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City Guide

Annual Events


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Highlights of Ann Arbor's yearly calendar. For comprehensive current events, use the Observer Daily Calendar link below.

NOTE: This listing spans two years--always check the year as well as the date.


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AACME: Ann Arbor Creativity and Making Expo

Free family-friendly showcase of local invention, creativity, and resourcefulness. Exhibits include robotics, radio, rocketry, machines, tools, STEAM & STEM projects, whimsical creations, participatory activities & more. Volunteers welcome. May, 2020 date TBA. a2geeks.org/aacme

downtown library, 343 S. 5th Ave. [map]


African American Downtown Festival

Crafts, merchandise, food, and kids' activities at N. Fourth Ave. and E. Ann St. Musical, theatrical, and dance performances. First Sat. in June 9 a.m.-8 p.m. June 6, 2020. cwpfestival@gmail.com


(734) 858-9121


Ann Arbor Antiquarian Book Fair

Forty antiquarian book dealers sell 1st editions, old and collectible books, children's books, Americana, prints, and more. May 17, 2020 jplatt@provide.net, annarborbookfair.com

Michigan Union ballroom, 530 S. State [map]
Jay Platt, (734) 995-1891


Ann Arbor Art Fair

Four independent fairs with more than 1,000 artists. The Ann Arbor Street Art Fair, the Original (734-994-5260, artfair.org), is on Ingalls Mall, North University, and E. Washington. The Ann Arbor's State Street Art Fair (734-646-1500, statestreetdistrict.org) is in the shopping districts around State and Liberty. The Ann Arbor Summer Art Fair (734-662-3382, theguild.org) has a downtown section on Main and Liberty and a campus section on S. State. Ann Arbor's South University Art Fair (734-663-5300, a2southu.com) runs from State St. to the South University business district, with branches on East University and Church. Includes entertainment stages, artist demonstrations, art activities, and food and drink vendors. Preceded on July 13 by the Dart for Art community race (734-994-5260 and the Townie Street Party (towniestreetparty.com), with free live music and art activities, a Youth Art Fair, and food and drinks for sale. Art Fair Dates and Times: July 16-19, 2020,Thurs.-Sat. 10 a.m.-9 p.m., Sun. noon-6 p.m.




Ann Arbor Film Festival

The longest-running independent and experimental film series in North America celebrates film as art with screenings of all lengths and genres over six days in March. Also panels, workshops, multimedia installations, and parties. Mar. 24-29, 2020. info@aafilmfest.org, aafilmfest.org

Michigan Theater, 603 E. Liberty; office: 230 Collingwood, #160B [map]
(734) 995-5356


Ann Arbor Folk Festival

Two concerts of roots and acoustic music to benefit The Ark. Features well-known acts along with musicians on the rise. Jan. 31 & Feb. 1, 2020. feedback@theark.org, theark.org

Hill Auditorium, 825 North University [map]
(734) 761-1800. Tickets: (734) 763-8587


Ann Arbor JCC Book and Arts Festival

Brings in authors and other forms of artistic expression. Movies, music, and visual arts plus author talks. Some events are off-site. Each November karenfreedland@jccfed.org, jccannarbor.org

Jewish Community Center, 2935 Birch Hollow [map]
(734) 971-0990


Ann Arbor Pride

Kerrytown District. Celebrates the diversity of gender identity, sexual orientation, and the LGBTQ community. All are welcome. Live music, dancing, food, substance-free spaces and events, family-friendly programming, resource connecting, and other events. Follow Jim Toy Center on Facebook for more information. August 1st. & 2nd., 2020 annarborpride.com




Ann Arbor Summer Festival & Top of the Park

Presents 170+ events over nearly 4 weeks each summer, 90 percent of which are admission-free. The Mainstage ticketed series features performances by marquee talent in music, public radio, circus, dance, and comedy in a variety of venues. The admission-free Top of the Park series, held outdoors on Ingalls Mall at 915 E. Washington St., offers concerts, movies, kids activities, wellness classes, and open-air spectacles with local food vendors. Top of the Park takes place 6 nights a week (except Mondays) starting at 5 p.m. June 12-July 5, 2020. a2sf.org


(734) 994-5999. Tickets: (734) 764-2538


Apples and Honey & Lots, Lots More!

Annual family event celebrating the Jewish fall holidays of Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, and Simcah Torah. Hands-on crafts, games, inflatables, snacks and food for purchase, baked goods for purchase, and more. Apple and honey tasting. Open to all. Sun. Sept. 22, 2019, 3-5 p.m. jessicagillespie@jccannarbor.org, jccannarbor.org

Jewish Community Center, 2935 Birch Hollow [map]
(734) 971-0990


Benefit Concert for The Breakfast Program at St. Andrews

Local and top name musical entertainment to benefit St. Andrews daily meal program. March. breakfastatstandrews.org/home/benefit-concert

316 S. Main, The Ark [map]
(734) 761-1800


Cinetopia International Film Festival

Starting 2019, partnered with the Jewish Film Festival in Ann Arbor. Eleven-day festival with feature-length dramas, comedies, and documentaries from the world's top film festivals, including Sundance, Toronto, and Cannes. Screenings at the Michigan Theatre, the State Theatre, the Detroit Film Theatre, and other Detroit metro locations. 2020 May dates TBA. cinetopiafestival.org


(734) 668-8397


Dancing in the Streets

An afternoon of dancing to live music, including swing, square, contra & more, as well as concerts, performance dance groups, and children's activities. Held outdoors at the corner of Main & Washington. Sponsored by AACTMAD, the Ann Arbor Community of Traditional Music and Dance. 1:30-6:30 p.m. Labor Day Sunday. info@aactmad.org, aactmad.org/dits


(734) 786-8380


Dawn Farm Jamboree

Family-friendly event with activities for all ages: music and entertainment, live and silent auctions, a gift table, a children's tent and midway, hayrides, farm animals, food and beverages. All proceeds support Dawn Farm's care for people with addictions. Free admission. Sept. 8, 2019. jamboree@dawnfarm.org, dawnfarm.org

6633 Stony Creek Rd. [map]
(734) 485-8725


Dawn Farm Ride for Recovery

Family fun and fitness event with four bike rides to choose from, a run/walk, and a Recovery Celebration lunch. All proceeds support Dawn Farm's care for people with addictions. April 26, 2020. info@dawnfarm.org, dawnfarm.org

6633 Stony Creek Rd. [map]
(734) 485-8725


Earth Day Festival

2020 is the 50th anniversary. Celebration with environmental education displays from local-area non-profits, live music, hands-on activities, guided hikes, live-animal presentations, wind-energy demonstrations, learning presentations, and more. Participants are encouraged to wear costumes representing plants and animals. Apr. 19, 2020. Noon-4 p.m. aaearthday@gmail.com, a2earthday.org

Leslie Science & Nature Center, 1831 Traver


Edgefest

One of North America's premier alternative music festivals, featuring jazz and experimental new music at Kerrytown Concert House, 415 N. Fourth Ave., and other locations. Oct. 16-19, 2019. kch@kerrytownconcerthouse.com, kerrytownconcerthouse.com


(734) 769-2999


FestiFools

A downtown spectacle of larger-than-life puppetry and pageantry, accompanied by musical entertainment, which everyone is invited to help create and operate. Apr. 5, 2020. 4-5 p.m. At Fool Moon, two days earlier, processions carrying hand-made luminary sculptures converge on Washington and Ashley streets downtown for interactive art installations, laser shows, beer tent, DJs, street dancing, and more. Dusk to 10 p.m. April 3, 2020. wonderfoolproductions@gmail.com, wonderfoolproductions.org




Green Fair

Downtown exhibits promoting Washtenaw County nonprofits, local environmental groups, products, and sustainability issues. Clean energy, alternative fuel vehicles, energy saving appliances & green building materials. Green commute/alternative transportation, live music, organic fare, live birds of prey, and activities for children. June 12, 2020. 6-9 p.m. cschopieray@a2gov.org, a2gov.org/greenfair

Main Street from William to Huron
(734) 794-6161, ext. 41602


Grillin' for Food Gatherers

This festive barbecue blowout fundraiser features live music, food from more than 50 local restaurants, beer and wine, kids' games, and a silent auction of food-related items. Rain or shine. 3-8 p.m. June 14, 2020. foodgatherers.org, (click on events)

Washtenaw Farm Council Grounds, 5055 Ann Arbor-Saline Rd., Saline [map]
(734) 761-2796


Huron River Day

River exhibits, discounted canoe and kayak rentals, live music, food vendors, fishing, and a children's activity tent. May 30, 2020. Noon-4 p.m. csaam@a2gov.org, a2gov.org/hrd

Gallup Park, 3000 Fuller [map]
(734) 794-6240


Juneteenth

Commemorates the announcement of the end of slavery in Texas and the Southwest on June 19, 1865. Performances by local talent, games, health and nonprofit information, food concessions, vendors, cake walk and a children's area. June 20, 2020 wvhamp@comcast.net, a2naacp.org

Wheeler Park [map]
(734) 761-9084


Kerrytown NashBash

Outdoor concert featuring musicians from Ann Arbor and Nashville. Beer, wine, barbecue & food truck offerings. 5-9:30 p.m. Open-mic afterparty at Braun Court, 9:30-11 p.m. Third Thurs. in Aug. Aug. 20, 2020. kerrytown.org/community-events

Ann Arbor Farmers Market


Marriage Equality Anniversary Celebration

Celebration of the "Day of Decision," when marriage equality became law. Champagne toast, family-friendly fun, including music, dancing, children's activities, treats, special guests, and more in the courtyard. Free. June 30, 2019. More on Facebook.

319 Braun Ct. [map]


Michigan A Cappella Festival (MACFest)

A showcase for all 15 U-M a cappella groups. 2019 fall date TBA. maccexec.wixsite.com/website

Rackham Auditorium [map]
(734) 763-1107


Minifest

The Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival presents concerts featuring internationally known artists and new chamber ensembles. June, 2020. kch@kerrytownconcerthouse.com, kerrytownconcerthouse.com

Kerrytown Concert House, 415 N. Fourth Ave [map]
(734) 769-2999


Rolling Sculpture Car Show

More than 300 antique, classic, and concept cars on display downtown. July 10, 2020. 2-10 p.m. sandra@mainstreetannarbor.org, mainstreetannarbor.org


(734) 668-7112


Shakespeare in the Arb

University students and local actors in an alfresco production of a Shakespeare play that moves through various settings in Nichols Arboretum. 2020 dates: June 11-14; 18-21; 25-28. mbgna.umich.edu

1610 Washington Hts. [map]
(734) 647-7600


Taste of Ann Arbor

Bite-sized samples from local restaurants and cafes, live music, and children's activities. Downtown. May 31, 2020. sandra@mainstreetannarbor.org, mainstreetannarbor.org


(734) 668-7112


The Ark's Storytelling Festival

International, national, and regional storytellers. Sat. 7:30 p.m. (aimed at adults) and Sun. 1 p.m. (aimed at kids). Feb. 22 & 23, 2020. feedback@theark.org, theark.org

316 S. Main [map]
(734) 761-1800


Week After Art Fair Song Fest

25th year of this event put on by the Ann Arbor Festival of Song at the Kerrytown Concert House. Guest artists, local favorites, and student and professional performers.Held late July, Tues.-Fri. after the annual Art Fair. rodgersjane@hotmail.com, facebook.com/a2fos




Wine, Women, and Song

Local, notable singer-actresses perform songs from musical theater to light opera, including some original numbers. Wine included in admission. Winter 2020. kch@kerrytownconcerthouse.com, kerrytownconcerthouse.com

Kerrytown Concert House, 415 N. Fourth Ave. [map]
(734) 769-2999


Ya'ssoo Greek Festival

Live Greek music, St. Nicholas Dancers, Agora Marketplace, bookstore, church presentations, raffle, homemade Greek food and pastries. June 7-9, 2019. annarborgreekfestival.org

St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church, 3109 Scio Church [map]
(734) 332-8200




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