Balloons Over Bavarian Inn | @the.bearded.photog
Set Your Sights On Our
Top Annual
Spring Festivals
Downtown Frankenmuth | @emilykurzer
April 1 - May 1
Bavarian Easter Celebration

Partake in the historic Osterbrunnen tradition, and experience rich displays of spring flowers, colored Easter eggs, and pine-branch garland decorating trees, buildings, and fountains all throughout Frankenmuth. The Osterbrunnen custom is more than 200 years old, and continues today as a feast for the eyes and ode to joy and color!

River Place Shops | @riverplaceshops

Banff Centre Mountain Film Festival World Tour (April 8 – 9) Celebrate adventurous folk and the lure of the mountains while this traveling festival is in town! Witness coveted mountain films that showcase the spirit of people who live in, play in, and love mountainous areas. Experience high adventure and a passion for the outdoors through each inspiring film.

Smetanka Spring Craft Show
(April 9) Gather a group of friends and spend the day browsing more than 100 booths with limitless gifts, home embellishments, jewelry, florals, yard decor, and more! This pre-Easter showing at Harvey Kern Pavilion in Frankenmuth will put a smile on your face and bring a touch of spring into your home.

Zehnder's Ragtime Festival
(April 20 – 23) Celebrate the sounds of energetic and colorful Ragtime music! Enjoy the blending of African rhythms with European classical harmonies at multiple concerts throughout this festival, from the Morning Rise & Shine show to Vaudeville Night, each with delicious menus served alongside your entertainment.

Bringin' Back the 80s Fest

Bringin' Back the 80s Fest (April 22 – 23) Tease your hair high, peg your stonewashed jeans, and dance your way through reliving the 80s! Go wild at this outrageous festival with live cover “hair bands”, best-dressed contests, and the Retro Rec Room — an 80s dream of games like Nintendo, Atari, and Sega, and displays including a “totally rad” DeLorean.

Freeland Walleye Festival (April 28 - May 1) With carnival rides all weekend, a large car show, festive parade, Bingo & Corn Hole, Beer Pong Tournament — and a music tent that blasts live tunes and serves cold beer — celebrate the 36th Annual Freeland Walleye Festival & Fishing Tournament with citywide garage sales and so much more!

Saginaw on Stage Music Festival (April 29) Experience live music and top-notch talent, including 19 bands performing on multiple stages throughout the historic Saginaw Club! With genres including bayou-folk-rock to electro-acoustic reggae-pop — partake in dance instruction sessions, performances by dancers, and a fabulous evening of entertainment!

Bringin' Back the 80s Fest

Shipshewana on the Road (April 30 - May 1) Shop with thousands of enthusiasts at this traveling show, and discover some of the most unique trinkets and treasures under the sun! Find interesting and creative clothing, gifts, goods, and foods — it’s all at Harvey Kern Pavilion in Frankenmuth for two days, and then it’s gone!

Rebel Co. Spring Market (May 7) Looking for Americana, Junk Gypsy, Boho? You’ll find it at this eclectic & soulful festival! Shop over 100 curated vendors, from boutique pop-ups to shoppable campers, and discover handmade, vintage, home decor, plants, antiques, and boutique treasures!

Cinco De Mayo Annual Parade & Festival
(May 7) Celebrate the largest Hispanic parade in Michigan, and enjoy family-friendly festivities at outdoor Huntington Event Park! Taste authentic tamales, tacos, burritos, enchiladas, and more, and experience live entertainment, Hispanic dancing, a Low Riders car show, and bounce houses and activities for kids!

Bavarian Inn Cluck Truck
May 12
Funtown Chowdown Food Truck Festival

With live music, craft beer, and activities for the whole family, taste your way through a lineup of 20 Michigan-based food trucks that are all notorious in these neighborhoods! The feast takes place each second Thursday, May - September, at Frankenmuth River Place Shops — and so do tap takeovers you won’t want to miss!

Funtown Chowdown Food Truck Festival | @riverplaceshops

Bay Heritage Quilters Guild Quilt Show (May 13 – 15) Peruse 150 quilts on display, shop the vendor mall, and try your luck in the raffle for the handmade quilt, "Rhapsody in Bloom". With special exhibits, foods, and favors, enjoy this exquisite experience!

Think Spring Makers Market
(May 14) Stretch your legs throughout the second-floor ballroom of SVRC Marketplace in Saginaw, and shop unique items from more than 70 local makers while sampling fresh flavors! Look for apparel and spring decor, handcrafted bath & body products, and more.

The Great Lakes Market at From Buds to Blooms
(May 14 – 15) Enjoy the “thrill of the hunt and discovery of new treasures” in “an organized maze of 12 x 12 experiences”! With more than 30 vendors, handmade goods, local food trucks and musicians, shop jewelry, art, crafts, clothing, and flowers at this “part salvage hunt, part maker center, part culinary adventure”.

World Expo of Beer

World Expo of Beer (May 20 – 21) With more than 350 beers from around the globe, the World Expo of Beer in Frankenmuth is Michigan's largest beer sampling event! Dance to live music and whet your whistle with selections from 50 breweries from across five continents. Held rain or shine, shuttle buses are hopping all throughout this festival, and admission includes a free souvenir beer sampling mug!

Friday FUN Nights
(May 27) Take part in festivities every Friday, late-May – September, as Main Street Frankenmuth comes alive with musicians and street performers! Discover local favorites and talent from around the state, and enjoy face painting, balloon twisting, magicians, and entertainment for all ages.

Balloons Over Bavarian Inn | @edisal_azar

Balloons Over Bavarian Inn (May 27 - 30) Experience twice-daily shows, morning and night. See surreal sunrise flights, with more than 25 hot air balloons taking to the sky. Attend nightly Balloon Glows to witness a spectacular display — the balloons are held from fully ascending to hang like huge lanterns magically glowing in the sky!

Frankenmuth Dog Bowl
(May 28 – 29) Attend a festival the whole family will enjoy — four-legged family members, too! All breeds are welcome to attend and compete in 29 events (22 events are open to guests’ pets) including DockDogs Competitions, Disc Dog Competitions, Police K-9 Demos, Weiner Dog Races, and the Pet Parade. Don’t miss the Annual Canine Cruise aboard the Bavarian Belle Riverboat!

Frankenmuth Memorial Day Parade
(May 30) Beginning at 10 a.m. at Kern's Sausages, watch this annual parade with floats, fire trucks, and marching bands as it proceeds down Main Street to the high school football field.

Pencil in
More Upcoming
Spring Events
State Theatre of Bay City | @kellyjomaldonado

Live Concerts + Entertainment

Sing out loud to classics like “Free Fallin’” at The Insiders - A Tom Petty Tribute, or play your cards right to enjoy The Gambler Returns: A Kenny Rogers Tribute, both inside the Art Deco gem State Theatre of Bay City.

Experience the lavish Temple Theatre while you sway to top-ten hits including "Sister Golden Hair" at the America: 50th Anniversary Tour, or watch where the night goes when “Weird Al” Yankovic takes the stage!

Step into Artrageous to experience live art creation, or fall in love with the thrilling energy of an Irish and international Riverdance performance at Midland Center for the Arts.

See what’s been described as an “explosive, inventive, provocative, witty, and utterly unique show” when the international percussion sensation, STOMP, rocks the stage at The Dow Event Center this spring!

Saginaw Art Museum | @theejustinlee

Art Exhibitions

Step inside a 1904 Georgian-Revival mansion, the Saginaw Art Museum, and discover From Africa to Eternity through July 1 — a vision of masks made by artist Lark Allen III, constructed from discarded and found objects that each tell a unique story.

Experience Harold Neal and Detroit African American Artists: 1945 through the Black Arts Movement — a compilation of artists’ responses through the Civil Rights, Black Power, and Black Arts Movements — at Marshall M. Fredericks Sculpture Museum through April 16. Or, through June 18, witness Tradition Interrupted — an international group exhibition of 11 artists weaving traditional craft with contemporary ideas.

Interact with Art Around the City, a year-round public art project and outdoor exhibition featuring 50 Artists of the Great Lakes Bay Region! Look for displays throughout Downtown Bay City, Uptown Bay City, Veterans Park, and Bigelow Park (around the Bay City Area Riverwalk/Railtrail).

Japanese Cultural Center | @you._can._call._me._al

Educational Workshops + Tours

Take a walk-in “Tea & Tour” at Japanese Cultural Center, Tea House, and Gardens of Saginaw, or reserve tickets for a one-hour, authentic Traditional Tea Ceremony — held the second Saturday of every month. Discover classes in traditional Japanese arts including origami and bonsai nurturing, and enjoy Ukiyo-e: The Art of Japanese Woodblock Prints.

Join a caring and inclusive community of instructors and artists for Express Yourself Artshop workshops at Creative 360 — including Wonderful Wood Art, Jazzed Up Jewelry, Watercolor, and many more!

Tour The Pines Home on Self-Guided Saturdays at Dow Gardens on the first Saturday of every month. Explore a National Historic Landmark, the 1899 home of Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow, filled with treasures and artifacts collected by the Dow family. Look into Floral Arranging Workshops and Wildflower Tours while you’re at Dow Gardens this spring!

Great Lakes Loons Baseball | @vickis_views
Spring Into
Opening-Day Celebrations

April 8 is Opening Day to catch a Great Lakes Loons Minor League Baseball game, and their season lasts into the summer! Look for Thirsty Thursdays (half-off draft beer), Feast Fridays for $2 hot dogs, Sunday games where kids eat free and can run the bases, Marvel character appearances, and Star Wars-themed nights. Watch the game from one of 5,200 stadium seats or bring a blanket and cheer from the lawn!

Speaking of “Opening Day”, when can you stroll through local farmers markets to purchase armloads of produce, fresh-cut flowers, and baked goods? When will the animals at Saginaw Children’s Zoo and Wilderness Trails make their seasonal debuts? And when (please, soon!) can we officially board boat tours for the season? Spring right over to our full list of upcoming events in the Great Lakes Bay & see!

Jen W. O'Deay

Jen is a Saginaw native and owner of Feel These Words, an independent copywriting studio & home to the free "5 Day Website MiniBoost". Jen specializes in writing that connects, delivered through website copy, branded content articles, and WingWoman writing services. You'll find Jen camping with her family, laughing, and at

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