Thursday, August 28, 2008

Detroit Staycation: Labor Day Weekend Festivals

Summer's almost over, but Labor Day Weekend offers lots of fairs, festivals, concerts, and family-fun activities in and around Detroit. Don't tell your boss I said so, but you might as well take Friday off, too--so much to do and see!

The Michigan State Fair
Last week, I posted about the Michigan State Fair, which began on August 22. It continues this weekend through Labor Day.

Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix
Belle Isle roars again this year with the 2008 Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix Race, with proceeds to support the beautification and maintenance of Belle Isle. Every year, Detroit families participate in "Free Prix Day", where festival goers can observe qualifying races, see the drivers and cars up close, and enjoy food, beverages, and rides. There is no parking on Belle Isle during the Grand Prix. This year's racing activities begin on Friday, August 29, and culminate with the big race of the American Le Mans Series, the IndyCar Series, and the SCAA SPEED World Challenge GT Championship on Sunday, August 31. The Grand prix is run by a subsidiary of the Downtown Detroit Partnership, chaired by Roger Penske. For further event and ticket information, visit the Grand Prix Website.

Chrysler Arts, Beats and Eats
Over 200 musical performances, 155 artist exhibits, and 50 restaurants will be featured at the 11th Annual Chrysler Arts, Beats, and Eats in Pontiac. Starting Friday August 29 at 4 pm, and continuing through Labor Day at 8 pm, the Arts, Beats, and Eats Festival will also feature "Recycle and Bicycle": making a difference by Going Green. Festival-goers will also have a chance to become amateur bloggers at the "Blogin Cafe'" equipped with 50 computer stations and guest celebrity bloggers. Local bands and musicians will be featured on several stages representing various music genres: smooth soul, jazz, r&b, rock, alternative, rockabilly, and techno. A complete listing of the cuisine, music, and art activities is available here.

Ravi Coltrane
Detroit International Jazzfest
The 29th Annual Jazzfest (formerly known as "Detroit Montreux) will take place from Friday, August 29 through Monday, September 1 downtown at Hart Plaza. This year's theme is "A Love Supreme: the Philly-Detroit Summit", featuring artists from both Philadelphia and Detroit. From Philly, artists include Benny Golson, Jimmy Heath, pat marino, and Christian McBride, the 2008 Artist-in-Residence. Detroit music legends Barry harris, Geri Allen, Kenny Burrell, and Gerald Wilson will appear. Lalah Hathaway, Ravi Coltrane, and Brandon Lee are just a few headliners. Full information is available on the website.

Shameless Plug: Please read my husband's blog, The "D" Spot...

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