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Michigan’s Leading Family Festival at the Marine City Maritime Days

When planning your next big family getaway, look no further than the scenic parks, great live entertainment and friendly faces of Marine City, Michigan.


With origins as a shipbuilding center dating back to the early-to-mid-19th century, Marine City is a historical location that has grown into one of Eastern Michigan's top vacation locations. The history of the city is easy to access and is on display at various sites like Marine City Pride and Heritage Museum, various restored homes, and historic City Hall. Another major draw to Marine City is shopping. From outlets to unique boutiques, you’ll find it here. Locations such as Good Natured Gardens and Vera Grace Emporium are great places to find unique mementos. If you're in the mood for live entertainment, the city has multiple choices. The Riverbank Theater is ideal for watching a play or musical. Snug Theater offers live comedy, speakers and puppet shows. The Mariner is perfect for seeing art or documentary movies. To get the full Marine City experience, you need to visit during a big local event like the Marine City Maritime Days.


Proudly heading into its 37th year, Marine City Maritime Days has established itself as one of the top community events in the region. Expecting over 20,000 people this year, the only thing bigger than the crowds, is the number of activities, vendors and food options. During the three days of this event there will be hundreds of things to do including everything from cooking competitions to hula hoop shows. If you're traveling with your kids, this event is perfect. All ages of children will love the great live entertainment, games, rides and treats. Not only is the event fun, but the beautiful city, great parks, and friendly residents really make this a special experience. Start planning your next defining family vacation and head to Marine City for Maritime Days. got the chance to interview Melisa Blanchard, President of Marine City Festival Inc., to talk about this great family experience.


RAL: Tell me a little bit about the event.

MB: This is the 37th  year of the annual Marine City Maritime Days.


RAL: How many annual participants do you draw and who they are demographically?

MB: This year we are expecting between 20,000 and 30,000 people in attendance. Our event caters to people of all ages. We have multiple family-friendly activities in addition to many events that are more targeted to adults, seniors, and couples.


RAL: What makes this event unique?

MB: We feel it is one of the last true community events. We have something for everyone plus it's located right along the St. Clair River so that’s a great bonus.


RAL: Take me through a day at the event, what can attendees expect to find for activities?

MB: We have so many activities, that I can't list them all. For a complete list, please visit our website. From BBQ cooking and fireworks, to chili dog eating contests and a 5K River Run, there are a wide range of things to do during the event.


RAL: Will there be any guest appearances?

MB: We have some great local performers, as well as the Detroit Circus (new event this year) doing a show in the park on Friday from 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm.


RAL: What dining options will there be?

MB: In addition to our wonderful downtown restaurants, we also have some of the festival favorite food vendors.


RAL: What is the overall environment like?

MB: It depends on the day/time. Some of the time it is very casual and laid back, just enjoying the arts and crafts, tractor, car, and motorcycle shows. Other times it is very busy with the International Kinetic Energy Races, Ribs on the River, two stages with live entertainment, contests, food, vendors, and small children's rides.


RAL: What can an attendee expect to find for local lodging?

MB: We are lucky to be five miles north of the Algonac State Park, an area that’s great for camping. We also have the Heather House Bed and Breakfast, and a nice cozy motel (Anchor Inn Motel).


RAL: What does the event mean to the community?

MB: This is a tradition that is filled with old and new memories. Our festival is also a great place for our local organizations, businesses, and community to showcase, fundraise, and create awareness alike.


RAL: Does this drive business to your local economy?

MB: Yes, definitely. We have many people that stroll through and realize all the great things our small town has to offer. Quite often they choose to come back to visit those businesses just because they didn't expect to be so busy that day.


RAL: Does the event support a special cause in the community?

MB: The festival offers all of our local non-profits, churches, schools, and clubs an opportunity to get involved, fundraiser, adopt an event, and set up a booth. The festival is actually organized by an all volunteer non-profit organization, Marine City Festival Inc., and all the profits from the festival are used to keep the festival going for future years.


RAL: Why should people come to your event?

MB: Because it is just a great experience to see a small town come together to build such a great event with so much for everyone to do. And who doesn't like fireworks, parade, great food, and awesome people, and again the beautiful river :)

For more information about the Marine City Maritime Days, please visit their website.