November Family Fun Fairs & Festivals in Southeast Michigan


This month, visions of turkey, football and parades are dancing in many metro Detroit parents' heads (not to mention that delicious hour of sleep we gain when we "fall back" in the wee hours of Sunday, Nov. 2!). And small wonder, too. November is a season rife with tradition and family fun here in southeast Michigan. From stage shows and nature fun to festive trees and several parades (including the Nov. 27 show stopper on Woodward Avenue in Detroit), here's a little list of kid-pleasing delights sure to create a few memories this season.

Day of the Dead Celebration in Southwest Detroit

Oct. 13-Nov. 9, 2014

  • Address: Near the Southwest Detroit Business Association, 7752 Vernor Highway, Detroit
  • Time: Noon-3 p.m. daily
  • Phone: 313-842-0986
  • Cost: free

The exploration of this holiday continues. Kids can learn about Dia de los Muertos through a self-guided family tour of ofrendas, or altars honoring deceased loved ones, in the Mexicantown area. Be sure to visit the Mexicantown Fiesta Center Oct. 30-Nov. 4, too, for more (read about that in our Day of the Dead feature).

Christmas Caroled at the Encore Musical Theatre Company in Dexter

Nov. 20-Dec. 21, 2014

  • Address: 3126 Broad St., Suite A, Dexter
  • Time: 7 p.m. Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays, 3 and 8 p.m. Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays (a few exceptions apply; see description below)
  • Phone: 734-268-6200
  • Cost: $18-$32/tickets

This spin on holiday musicals takes a classic tale and wraps it around an old-fashioned Christmas concert for sure-fire festive fun. Note: There is no show on Thanksgiving. Also, on Thursday, Dec. 11, there are shows at both 3 and 7 p.m.

Holiday Lighted Parade in Northville

Nov. 21, 2014

  • Address: downtown area
  • Time: 6:30 p.m. step off, Friday
  • Phone: 248-349-7640
  • Cost: free

Twinkling lights are not only on the streets but also in them at this downtown Northville community favorite. This year's theme is "All I Want for Christmas Is."

Thanksgiving for Nature at the Farmington Hills Nature Center

Nov. 22, 2014

  • Address: 24915 Farmington Road, Farmington Hills
  • Time: 1-4 p.m. Saturday
  • Phone: 248-477-1135
  • Cost: $5/per person $15/ family of four

Families can take a self-guided scavenger hunt – then listen to stories, play games and enjoy a campfire.

Downtown Rochester Festival of Trees at Rochester Community House

Nov. 22-23, 2014

  • Address: 816 Ludlow Ave., Rochester
  • Phone: 248-656-0060
  • Time: 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday
  • Cost: $5/person, free/ages 10 and under

Explore a variety of festively decorated 4-foot-tall trees, plus enjoy live entertainment, kids activities and Santa visits.

Holiday Magic Parade in Royal Oak

Nov. 23, 2014

  • Address: Starts at Lincoln and Washington streets, downtown Royal Oak
  • Time: 2-3 p.m./parade, 3-5 p.m./meet Santa, Sunday
  • Phone: 248-246-3180
  • Cost: free

Back for lucky year No. 13, this tradition features more than 80 units, from marching bands and floats to circus floats. There's also a chance to donate toys to kids in need and meet Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Festival of Trees at Ford Community & Performing Arts Center

Nov. 23-Nov. 30, 2014

  • Address: 15801 Michigan Ave., Dearborn
  • Times: 2-7 p.m. Sunday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Tuesday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Wednesday, closed Thursday (Thanksgiving), 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday
  • Phone: 248-336-2331
  • Cost: $5/adults, $3/kids, free/under 2

Get in the seasonal spirit with professionally decorated trees, wreaths and gingerbread houses, plus Santa and kids activities. It all supports the Children's Hospital of Michigan Foundation.

America's Thanksgiving Parade

Nov. 27, 2014

  • Address: Woodward Avenue from Kirby to Congress streets, downtown Detroit
  • Time: 9 a.m. step off, Thursday
  • Phone: 313-923-7400
  • Cost: free/general, $35-$55/grandstand seating (must secure in advance; act early, as it sells out fast!)

For its 88th romp, this big-time Detroit tradition takes on a "Walking on Sunshine" theme as floats, balloons, Big Head Corps and, of course, Santa head down Woodward. Catch it live on WDIV-Local 4 (9-10 a.m.), too.

Grosse Pointe Santa Claus Parade

Nov. 28, 2014

  • Address: Kercheval Avenue from Lewiston to Cadieux roads
  • Time: 10 a.m. Friday
  • Phone: 313-881-4722
  • Cost: free

It's a local tradition, now 39 years strong, that brings the community together with floats, balloons and tons of fun.

Holly Dickens Festival

Nov. 29-Dec. 14, 2014

  • Address: Battle Alley area, downtown Holly
  • Time: 1-5 p.m. Saturdays-Sundays (Nov. 29-30, Dec. 6-7 and 13-14)
  • Phone: 248-431-1894
  • Cost: free

Inspired by the Charles Dickens classic tale A Christmas Carol, this 41st annual festival revels in the writer's era, compete with four stages of entertainment, festive food and more – even Scrooge himself.


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