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May Fairs & Festivals in Southeast Michigan

Late spring means family fun season is revving up in Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties. See what's in store for you and the kids in 2013.

Warm weather is most definitely in the air. And that means festival season is upon us! In May 2013, there's oodles to get you and the brood off to the right start, from eco awareness, cultural fun and Victorian times to unique delights like butterflies, Polish grub, techno tunes and Civil War re-enactments. And once that concluding Memorial Day weekend hits, get ready – the fair faucet turns on full-blast.

Pontiac Regional Chamber Carnival

April 25-May 5, 2013

  • Times: 4-10 p.m. Thursdays, Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays; noon-11 p.m. Friday and Saturdays, noon-9 p.m. Sundays
  • Address: Oakland Pointe Shopping Center, 402 N. Telegraph Road, Pontiac (across from Summit Place Mall)
  • Phone: 248-335-9600
  • Cost: free general entry, $20/ride wristband

It touts itself as one of the first big outdoor carnivals of the year for southeast Michigan – and, at a whopping 11 days, the story checks out! Rides, food and games are the hallmarks of this family fun annual event.

Downriver Fair & Expo

May 3-19, 2013

  • Address: Gibraltar Trade Center, 15525 Racho Road, Taylor
  • Times: 4-11 p.m. Wednesdays-Fridays, noon-midnight Saturdays-Sundays
  • Phone: 734-287-2000
  • Cost: free/general, $20/unlimited wristband on site

It's three full weeks of fun, including rides, a petting zoo, live music, free shows and classic midway fun. Plenty of popcorn, candy apples, corn dogs and funnel cakes, too.

Art Birmingham

May 11-12, 2013

  • Times: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday
  • Address: Shain Park, South Bates and West Merrill streets, downtown Birmingham
  • Phone: 734-662-3382
  • Cost: free general entry

The classic boasts more than 175 juried artists dealing fine works in painting, ceramics, jewelry, glass, sculpture, mixed media, fiber, metal and more. The Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center has art fun for kids, too.

Romeo Turns 175

May 18, 2013

  • Times: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and 7-9:30 p.m.
  • Address: Lion's Field, West St. Clair and South streets, Romeo
  • Phone: 586-752-3565
  • Cost: free

The village has a big birthday; celebrate with music, art, crafts, re-enactors, a kids zone and old-fashioned family fun. Stick around later for the laser light show.

Butterfly Festival

May 19, 2013

  • Time: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
  • Address: Exhibit Museum of Natural History, U of M campus, 1109 Geddes Ave., Ann Arbor
  • Phone: 734-764-0478
  • Cost: free

Watch live monarchs in the museum's butterfly sanctuary, use microscopes to see what the wings are made of – and even transform into a butterfly yourself by making your own wings! Pitch in, too, by helping the crew plant perennials in the butterfly garden, weather permitting.

Sumpter Township Country Fest

May 23-27, 2013

  • Times: midnight-11 p.m.
  • Address: Sumpter Fairgrounds, 23501 Sumpter Road, Belleville
  • Phone: 734-461-6201
  • Cost: free general entry, fees for rides/etc.

This blowout includes clowns, pony rides, magicians and kids activities galore, plus bingo, a beer tent and casino for the adults.

 

St. Mary's Polish Country Fair

May 24-27, 2013

  • Times: 5-11 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday
  • Address: campus of Orchard Lake St. Mary
  • Cost: free general entry, fees for rides/etc., $10/parking

It's pure family entertainment for a 42nd year, complete with carnival rides, dancing, Polish and American fare. Vegas tent and kids activities like wax hands, mosaics, pottery painting and "squirt the shirt."

Macomb Fair & Expo

May 24-June 9, 2013

  • Times: 3-11 p.m. Wednesdays-Thursdays, 3 p.m.-midnight Fridays, noon-midnight Saturdays, noon-11 p.m. Sundays; also open noon-11 p.m. Memorial Day, May 27
  • Address: Gibraltar Trade Center, 237 N. River Road, Mount Clemens
  • Phone: 586-465-6440
  • Cost: free/general, $22/unlimited wristband on site

The midway fun includes fun rides, music, free shows, banana derby monkey jockeys, a petting zoo and lots more fun.

Greater Rochester Heritage Days

May 25-26, 2013

  • Times: 10 a.m-6 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday
  • Address: Rochester Municipal Park, 816 Ludlow Ave., Rochester
  • Phone: 248-656-0999
  • Cost: free general entry

Lumberjack log rolling, axe throwing and chainsaw carving: It's all here, plus arts and crafts and Civil War reenactors. Check out custom cars here on Saturday – and antique cars for the Sunday crowd.

Movement Electronic Music Festival

May 25-27, 2013

  • Times: about noon-midnight Saturday-Monday
  • Address: Hart Plaza, 1 Hart Plaza, Detroit
  • Phone: 800-594-TIXX (8499)
  • Cost: $49/ticket, presale

Techno tunes have tough roots here in the D, and this annual music fest captures and continues that spirit. Packing in five stages, this Hart Plaza season-opener features Big Gigantic, a MOBY DJ set, Andy C, ADULT. and others. Best for older fan kids and parents who are fans of the genre.

Civil War Remembrance

May 25-27, 2013

  • Times: 9:30 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday-Monday
  • Address: The Henry Ford, Greenfield Village, 20900 Oakwood Blvd., Dearborn
  • Phone: 313-982-6001
  • Cost: free with admission: $24/ages 13-plus, $17.50/ages 5-12, free/4 and under

It's the ultimate Memorial Day weekend commemoration at southeast Michigan's foremost historic spot. This annual summer kick-off honors veterans with 450-plus military re-enactors creating an authentic era encampment for an observance filled with parades, artillery demos and 19th century music. Lots of hands-on activities, too.

Milan Community Fair

May 30-June 1, 2013

  • Times: 4-11 p.m. Thursday-Friday, noon-11 p.m. Saturday
  • Address: downtown Milan
  • Phone: 734-368-3812
  • Cost: Free general entry, $1/each ride tickets, $20/wristbands

It all started in 1949 as the Milan Free Fair, and the party hasn't let up yet. Swing by for artisans, tons of food and a parade Friday (6 p.m.), Backstreet CruiZers Thursday and Friday and a petting zoo plus fireworks over Ford Lake Friday. Saturday is kids' day!

Birmingham Village Fair

May 30-June 2, 2013

  • Times: noon-9 p.m. Thursday, noon-11 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturday, noon-9 p.m. Sunday
  • Address: streets surrounding Shain Park, downtown Birmingham
  • Phone: 248-644-1700
  • Cost: free general entry, $20/ride wristbands

It's a classic community fair, celebrating its 50th anniversary with rides, food booths and carnival games.

Chevrolet Belle Isle Grand Prix

May 31-June 2, 2013

  • Times: 8 a.m.-7:15 p.m. Friday, 8 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Saturday-Sunday
  • Address: Raceway at Belle Isle Park, Detroit
  • Phone: 866-464-PRIX (7749)
  • Cost: $45-$155/adults, $25-$110/unders age 12

Fast cars in three series – including the IZOD IndyCar, GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car and Pirelli World Challenge – zip along a 2.3-mile track.

Grosse Ile Islandfest

May 31-June 2, 2013

  • Times: 4-11 p.m. Friday, 7 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturday, 7 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday
  • Address: Grosse Ile Municipal Airport area, 9601 Groh Road, Grosse Ile
  • Phone: 734-675-2364
  • Cost: free/general

There's a Saturday parade, classic car cruise and show, airport activities, historical island tour, craft mart, food and more in store.

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