November Family Fun Fairs & Festivals in Southeast Michigan

Thanksgiving is coming up! Kick off the 2017 holiday season with these events for kids and families in Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties.

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. 5!). 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. 23 show stopper on Woodward Avenue in Detroit), here’s a little list of kid-pleasing delights in metro Detroit and beyond, sure to create a few memories this season.

Wayne County Lightfest

Nov. 11-Dec. 31, 2017

  • Address: Merriman Road between Warren Ave. and Ann Arbor Trail, Westland
  • Time: 7-10 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, 6-10 p.m. Fridays-Sundays, closed on Christmas Day
  • Phone: 734-261-1990
  • Cost: $5/vehicle

Drive through this family-favorite to check out more than 47 giant animated lighted holiday displays.

Holiday Lighted Parade in Northville

Nov. 17, 2017

  • 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.

Downtown Rochester Festival of Trees at Rochester Community House

Nov. 17-19, 2017

  • 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: free/Saturday-Sunday $50/adult cocktail preview on Friday

Tons of 4-feet, 6-feet and even 7-feet-tall trees are festively decorated for families to explore. There’s live entertainment, kids’ activities and visits with Santa, too.

Thanksgiving for Nature at the Farmington Hills Nature Center

Nov. 18, 2017

  • Address: 24915 Farmington Road, Farmington Hills
  • Time: 1-3 p.m. Saturday
  • Phone: 248-477-1135
  • Cost: $5/person

Families enjoy a self-guided scavenger hunt around the grounds followed by stories, games and a campfire.

Southfield International Festival at the Southfield Pavilion

Nov. 18-19, 2017

  • Address: 26000 Evergreen Road, Southfield
  • Phone: 248-796-5130
  • Time: noon-6 p.m. Saturday-Sunday
  • Cost: call for admission

Since 1926, this annual has been bringing folks together to experience Polish, Indian, African, Chinese, Irish and tons of other cultures through authentic food, dance, crafts and more.

Festival of Trees at Ford Community & Performing Arts Center

Nov. 19-Nov. 26, 2017

  • Address: 15801 Michigan Ave., Dearborn
  • Times: 2-7 p.m. opening day, 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Tuesday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Wednesday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday, closed Thanksgiving
  • Phone: 734-748-3822
  • Cost: $5/adults, $3/ages 3-16, free/under 2

Support the Children’s Hospital of Michigan Foundation and get in the holiday spirit at this family-favorite, which features professionally decorated trees, wreaths and gingerbread houses, visits with Santa, kids’ activities and more.

America’s Thanksgiving Parade

Nov. 23, 2017

  • Address: Woodward Avenue between Kirby and Congress streets, Detroit
  • Time: 8:50 a.m./step off, 10 a.m.-noon/TV time Thursday
  • Phone: 313-923-7400
  • Cost: free/general, $40-$65/grandstand seating (must secure in advance; act early, as it sells out fast!)

For its 91st romp, this big-time Detroit tradition features a procession of floats, balloons, Big Head Corps and, of course, Santa on Woodward Avenue. Catch it live on WDIV-Local 4, too.

Holly Dickens Festival

Nov. 24-26, Dec. 2-3 and 9-10, 2017

  • Address: Downtown area, Holly
  • Time: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 24, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturdays, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sundays
  • Phone: 248-431-1894
  • Cost: free

Inspired by the Charles Dickens classic tale A Christmas Carol, this 44th annual festival revels in the writer’s era, compete with four stages of entertainment, festive food and more – even Scrooge himself.

Classic Cartoon Festival at the Redford Theatre

Nov. 25, 2017

  • Address: Redford Theatre, 17360 Lahser Road, Detroit
  • Time: 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday
  • Phone: 313-537-2560
  • Cost: $5

See some of your favorite classic cartoons like Popeye, Superman, Tom and Jerry, Bugs Bunny and many others – all on the big screen again. Rated G.

Winter Fantasyland

Nov. 25-Dec. 24, 2017

  • Address: Kennedy Memorial Building, 3240 Ferris Ave., Lincoln Park
  • Time:4-8 p.m. Wednesdays-Fridays, 2-8 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Christmas Eve, closed Mondays-Tuesdays.
  • Phone: 313-386-0140
  • Cost: $1/person, $3/photo with Santa, $5/two photos

Watch how Santa’s elves work to make Christmas a success, and visit with the big guy himself at this annual community event.

This post was originally published in 2012 and is updated regularly.