Summer festival season begins


With Memorial Day out of the way, pools are open, summer camps are starting up and a range of festivals are gearing up to celebrate music, art and more throughout the summer. This weekend, there are a few festivals to kick things off as well as car shows, art displays, a triathlon and more.

For Friday evening’s live music, we have Mark Collins at Harrison Roadhouse in East Lansing at 6; Don Middlebrook and the Pearl Divers at Lake Lansing Park South, Tony Thompson at Red Cedar Spirits in East Lanisng and Grady Hall & the Disciples of Funk at UrbanBeat, all at 7; the Lansing Symphony Orchestra at the Wharton Center’s Cobb Great Hall at 7:30;  North of Five at The Peanut Barrel at 8; and Soulstice at The Green Door and The Cloud Hoppers at The Exchange, both at 9. Saturday evening, we have fingerstyle guitarist Hiroya Tsukamoto at Elderly Instruments at 6:30, Atomic Annie at Lansing Brewing Co. at 7 and the Powerlight Band at UrbanBeat at 8. Ending the weekend on Sunday is a Gospel Brunch with Sharrie Williams at UrbanBeat at noon, Pure Winds at UrbanBeat at 4 p.m., the weekly Sunday Jazz show at Red Cedar Spirits at 6 p.m. and Kung Fu Vampire at Mac’s Bar at 7 p.m.

For those who would like to try their hand at fingerstyle guitar, Tsukamoto is holding a workshop 3 p.m. Saturday at Elderly Instruments prior to his performance. He’ll demonstrate techniques, including chords and basic theory, and he’ll cover ways to practice on a daily basis so you can continue to improve your skills.

The Mid-Michigan Art Guild’s 16th Annual 12 x 12 Show is on display at Framer’s Edge in Okemos throughout June, featuring pieces by artists who work with a variety of mediums, including watercolor and acrylic paint, photography and collage. The gallery is open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Additional art displays include “The LGBTQ+ Artist in Michigan” at the Lansing Art Gallery, which is open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday; “Wild Florescence,” at The Peoples Church of East Lansing, which is open 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, and 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday; and “Blind Spot” and “DIGEST” at MSU’s Broad Art Museum, which is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

If you’d like to make some art of your own, the Grand Ledge Area District Library will have African paper bead take-home craft kits available 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday for pick up, and Keys to Manifestation is hosting a rain-stick-making workshop 3 p.m. Sunday.

For theater buffs, “Alabaster” continues at the Williamston Theatre 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 3 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday.

 If you’re looking to pick up some locally produced food items, there are a plethora of farmers markets open this weekend throughout Greater Lansing. For a full list, view our farmers market guide.

Bring your cars, trucks, bikes and anything else with wheels to the Holt Farmers Market parking lot 5 to 8 p.m. Friday for the weekly Cruise to Holt, where you can show off your ride and take a look at other community members’ unique vehicles. Jays Dogs food truck will serve burgers, coney dogs, fries and more, and Harmony Rythmz LLC will provide a DJ set.

Another event for car enthusiasts, the Capitol City Old Car Club’s 2nd Annual Benefit Car Show, will feature giveaways, food trucks, a DJ, tours of Lansing Community College’s auto lab and, of course, plenty of cars. The event takes place 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at LCC’s West Campus, and all proceeds will be donated to the club’s scholarship fund for automotive technologies program students at LCC.

The Karmanos Cancer Institute in McLaren Greater Lansing Hospital is hosting a National Cancer Survivors Day celebration 4 to 6 p.m. Friday, featuring cake and ice cream, rock painting, beading, tai chi, drumming, massage therapy, visits with Sparty and more.

ArtPath 6 will have its kickoff event 5 to 9 p.m. Friday at Rotary Park, featuring art sales, live music, face painting, magic and juggling performances, caricatures, food, chances to meet the ArtPath artists and more.

To view even more local art, visit Old Town on Saturday for the annual Chalk of the Town event, where you can watch local artists create pieces with sidewalk chalk from noon to 2:30 p.m.

Afterward, head to BAD Brewing Co. in Mason from 1 to 8 p.m. for its Summer Block Party, featuring an array of beverages, Peruvian food from Tantay and music with Be Kind Rewind and Pinter Whitnick.

Potter Park Zoo is celebrating World Migratory Bird Day 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday with a host of activity stations throughout the zoo. This year’s theme focuses on water and its significance for migratory birds.

The beginner-friendly Hawk Island Triathlon at Hawk Island County Park welcomes all ages, fitness levels and abilities. The races begin 7 a.m. Sunday for adults and 10:30 a.m. Sunday for kids. There are also relay options if you don’t think you can complete the entire event.

Finally, there are a few events this weekend to kick off the summer festival season, including Weavers of the Web’s Welcome Summer Festival 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday at Lake Lansing Park South, the St. Johns Pride Fest noon to 4 p.m. Saturday in downtown St. Johns, the Pumpstock 2023 Festival of American Roots Music 2 to 8 p.m. Saturday at Bailey Park in East Lansing and the Magical Realm Fantasy Faire 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Eaton County Fairgrounds in Charlotte.

Whatever you choose to do, I wish you the best of weekends.

(Have an event? Be sure to list it free at Think it’s worth at least a short story? Send a news release to for consideration.)


No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here

Connect with us