It’s National Cherry Festival Time
If you’ve never been to Traverse City’s National Cherry Festival, are you even from Michigan?
This year’s event takes place June 29 – July 6 and features more than 150 events and activities for families to enjoy. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan is proud to present a number of national-caliber entertainment acts performing on the Pepsi Bay Side Stage. Find a full list of events here.
Although there will be plenty of opportunities to indulge in flavorful food, there are also plenty of opportunities for healthy and active fun. Check out our recommendations below:
Saturday, June 29
- Farmers Market Brunch: Brunch made with fresh, local products directly sourced from farmers at the Sara Hardy Downtown Farmers Market? Sign us up, please!
- Zumba! Dance up a sweat and burn off that brunch. Check out how this newbie’s Cherry Festival Zumba experience turned out. Hint: it was a ton of fun.
- Sara Hardy Farmers Market: Stock up on locally grown fruit and vegetables, and maybe even make an amazing dish with them!
Sunday, June 30
- Beach Volleyball Tournament: Round up three of your friends for this 4-person beach volleyball tournament played on the beautiful sand of West Grand Traverse Bay.
- NASA: Journey to Tomorrow Exhibit: Experience a 53-foot, interactive learning adventure showing off NASA’s ability to launch us into the future!
- Family Sand Sculpture Contest: Put your family’s creativity to the test with this sand sculpture competition for families, groups and individuals ages 13 and up.
Monday, July 1
- Cherry Pie Bike Ride: Earn a free slice of pie from Grand Traverse Pie Company by completing this 10-mile bike ride along the TART trail.
Tuesday, July 2
- Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias: Featured as one of The Hollywood Reporter’s Top 40 Comedy Players of 2018, Gabriel is a comedian bound to make you cry from laughter.
Wednesday, July 3
- Kids Cherry Town Fun Night: Packed with entertainment for all ages, hands-on activities and lots of food, this evening would be a great time for families.
Thursday, July 4
- Cornhole Tournament: 32 teams of 2. Single elimination. First to 21 or 20 minutes. 27 feet regulation distance. No outside bags permitted! Bring your A-game!
- Kids Cherry Pie Eating Contest: Kids from pre-school to 12 years old get to go all out in this contest, and they get to eat tons of cherry pie!
- Fireworks: It will be the 4th of July, after all. Create memories with family and friends at this fun-filled tradition. If you miss the show on the 4th, be sure to catch the festival finale fireworks on Saturday, July 6.
Friday, July 5
- Kids Sand Sculpture Contest: Kids can release their creativity in this fun competition. For ages 3 – 12 and separated into groups by age and time.
- Cherry Idol Auditions: You, the mic, the crowd. No music. Sixty seconds of a capella amazement. Open for all ages 8 and up (separated into groups based on age.)
Saturday, July 6
- Meijer Festival of Races: The original Traverse City Foot Race started in 1973 as a 10K and then in 1978 shifted to a 15K and finally in 1989 added Traverse City’s first 5K. Today you can participate in all three of those events and a half-marathon! This race series has seen over 50,000 participants cross the finish line. Lace up your shoes and join the fun!
- Festival Fireworks Finale: What better way to close out the festival than with a fireworks show. Who says you can’t see a firework show more than once for the holiday?
Are you heading to the National Cherry Festival? Tell us about your favorite memories in the comments.
If you enjoyed this post, you might also like:
- From Pie Filling to Super Fruit: Michigan Tart Cherries are the Next Big Thing
- Cherry Recipes and Delights Abloom in Michigan
- Cherry Meatballs
Photo credit: Benson Kua