The Ultimate 2021 Guide of October Michigan Events and Best Things to Do in Michigan This Weekend

The ULTIMATE SOURCE of 2021 October Michigan events and fun things to do in Michigan for families, couples and friends! Grab our 21 Boredom Zapping Ideas! 

Destinations: DetroitTraverse CityFrankenmuthAnn ArborKalamazooPetoskeyCharlevoixMidland, South Haven, St. JosephGrand Rapids, Upper Peninsula and more!  

October Michigan events are full swing!  Scary haunted houses, visiting haunted places in Michigan, squash and pumpkin picking, changing leaves, bon fires and wine tasting is just a few of October events to look forward to!

Traveling Michigan in October is absolutely stunning as our nights are cool but our days are sunny and perfect for discovering forest walks! 

Let's travel Michigan together!

Join us on Instagram where I've posted all of our October Michigan adventures!  We hope you enjoy our October Michigan events and fun things to do!

And as always, if you have October Michigan events that you would like listed, let us know here!

Get ready to pick squash and pumpkins in October!!

THE BEST October Michigan Events-2021

  • PROJECT 1 by ArtPrize, 2020 CANCELLED, The creators of ArtPrize are launching another world-class art experience in Grand Rapids. Project 1 by ArtPrize is the first in a series of citywide exhibitions of public art taking place in the years between biennial ArtPrize competitions.
  • Frankenmuth Corn Maze Weekends, 5450 Weiss Rd, Frankenmuth, MI,  7:00 pm - 10:00 pm.  Open September 25-Oct 31, 2020. Fridays: 7-10 pm, Saturday: noon-10 pm
    Sundays: Noon-7 pm 

Admission: $8-$12. Voted Mid-Michigan’s #1 corn maze several years in a row!  Five acres of towering corn stalks, two miles of twisted trails, and strategically located observation bridges within three interconnected mazes await you at the Frankenmuth Corn Maze. Enjoy hayrides to the dairy farm Saturdays and Sundays from 1-5 pm.

  • Wein and Stein, October 1, 2020, Frankenmuth. Come on out and sample beer, wine and snacks at a variety of pubs, waterparks, quaint wine bars, breweries and more.  Purchase your tickets at the Visitor Center on Main Street.
  • 2021 Midland/Saginaw Fall Parade of Homes-October 1 - 9, 2021 | Fridays + Saturdays 1pm - 8pm, Monday - Thursday 4pm - 8pm
  • Empire Hops and Harvest Festival, October 2-3, 2020, Empire, MI.  Featuring Northern Michigan food and drinks, live performances and more to celebrate the awesome hop plant!
  • Fall Harvest Festival, October 3, 2020, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Chippewa Nature Center, Midland, MI. One of Chippewa Nature Center's largest events of the year! Demonstrations and programs will focus on autumn traditions of the 19th century.
  • Huron Township Apple Festival - October 3-4, 2020, Saturday 9 am – 8 pm, Sunday 10 am – 6 pm. 37283 Huron River Dr. Huron Township, Check out handmade quality craft vendors, food vendors, apple pies, entertainment. Festival is held in the downtown area of New Boston.
  • Michigan Antique Festival - October 3-4, 2020. Saturday 8 am-6 pm & Sunday 9 am-4 pm, $6 per person – 11 & under free! Free Parking. 12451 Andersonville Rd. Davisburg. About 1000 Vendors selling Antiques, Folk Art, Crafts, and unique items.  Check out the auto & truck show, parts & accessories swap meet, and huge auto for sale lot. Indoor and outdoor event held rain or shine.

  • Red Flannel Festival, Cedar Springs - October 3, 2020.  Live music, craft fair and carnival.  Saturday is the grand parade, art fair, car show and High School Marching Band Competition

  • Monster Mash Street Bash, October 3, 2020, Downtown Mackinaw City Mackinaw City, Come wake the Dead! 
  • Oktober-fest (21+) CANCELLED THIS YEAR. 6:00 – 8:30 PM, Downtown Market Grand Rapids, 435 Ionia Ave SW, Grand Rapids, MI.  Kick off Oktoberfest with a class all about beer and food! Start off with a beer cheese spread, followed by schnitzel topped with a caper brown butter sauce. Get tickets early!
  • Fall Festival at Kensington Metropark, Saturday, Oct 3, 2020 at 12:00 pm. Come enjoy a fun-filled weekend of harvest-themed activities for the whole family. Tour the farm, view traditional demonstrations, check out the food and craft vendors at the Festival Market, and be entertained by Rosco the Clown. The Kensington Living History Village will be open, showcasing early pioneer skills. Ride the horse-drawn hayride to and from the pumpkin patch.  12 p.m – 4 p.m. Cost: Free (hayrides and pumpkins not included) Super fun October Michigan event!
  • Hess-Hathaway Harvest Happening, Sunday, October 4, 2020, 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM. 825 S. Williams Lake Road. Exciting event for the entire family! Come enjoy the hayrides, pony rides, bouncers, children’s contests and crafts, entertainment for adults and children, crafters, bake sale, food concessions, historical house tours and games, pumpkin patch and more! 
  • Bruckelaufe (Bridge Race), October 7, 2020. The Frankenmuth Jaycee's sponsor the Brukelaufe Half Marathon and 5K.  The Bruckelaufe crosses 13 scenic bridges during its 13.1 mile course.
  • Flints Festival of Quilts, October 2020 CANCELLED, 816 Saginaw St., Flint. This annual event showcases quilters with exhibitions, workshops and social events.
  • Toughest Monster Trucks in Saginaw, Dow Event Center, Rescheduled from March to October 8-10, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. at Van Andel Arena.  Cheer on your favorite Monster Truck at this perfect Michigan event for kids!
  • Charlevoix's Applefest, October 9-11, 2020. East Park Tavern, 307 Bridge Street, Charlevoix
  • Greater Detroit Gem, Mineral, Fossil and Jewelry Show, 2020 CANCELLED.  October 8-10, 2021. Macomb community college south campus expo center, 14500 E. 12 Mile Road, Warren.  One of the Midwest’s largest collection of gems, minerals, fossils, and jewelry shown under one roof! Amazing displays and attractions from world-renowned universities and institutions.
  • Annual New Buffalo Harvest & Wine Festival,  October 2020 Dates TBD, Lions Pavilion Park, New Buffalo, 12–9 p.m.
  • Bonteboktoberfest, Binder Park Zoo,October 2020 CANCELLED, Battle Creek,  6–10 pm
  • Annual Garden City Chili Cook Off, October 10, 2020, 12 - 5 p.m., 5805 Central / Farmers Market Lot, Garden City, A community driven chili cook off where crocks of chili are created on site, tasted, and judged. Samples are available for purchase.  Hay rides and petting zoo accompany the day-long event along with a Hot Rod Car and Motorcycle Show displaying some of the best muscle on the streets.
  • Michigan International Alpaca Fest, October 17-18, 2020, Saturday 9:00 am-4:00 pm, Sunday 9:00 am-1:00 pm, Summit Sports Complex Dimondale, Large halter show, silent auction, alpaca product sales. Public event, FREE admission.
  • 26th Annual Appleumpkin Festival, October 10-11, 2020, 9 am – 6 am Saturday 10 am- 5 pm Sunday, Tecumseh, MI. Fun for the entire family!  Antiques Street Fair, Arts & Crafts Show, Midway Rides & Games, Food, Haunted House, Corn Box & Straw Maze, Make-It-Take-It Scarecrows, Antique Tractor Show (Saturday), Monster Truck Rides and more! Super fun October Michigan event!
  • Harvest Moon Festival 2020, Oct TBD, Grant, MI. Old Iron Bar & Grill, 189 S Maple St, Grant, MI.  Activities for the whole family!  BBQ Cooking Contest, The Great Pumpkin decorating contest and Auto Show!
  • Halloween at Greenfield Village - October 8-11, 15-18 , 22-25, 29-31, 2020 4:00 - 9:30 p.m. (Timed Entry)
  • Tahquamenon Falls State Park Harvest Festival, Saturday, October 10, 2020, 10 a.m. -7 p.m. . 41382 W M-123, Paradise, MI Annual autumn event at the Lower Falls campgrounds. Activities include pumpkin decorating contest, chili cook off, costume contest, trick-or-treating and more! Fun for the whole family! 
  • Michigan's Big Country Fest-Fri, October 16-17, 2020, 1:00 – 7:59 PM, Heritage Park, 601 Weiss St, Frankenmuth, MI. Stop in for awesome bands, a mechanical bull, bloody Mary bar, craft beer flights, food trucks, free line dancing lessons, cornhole tournament, Iron Pour, pumpkin stacking world championship, human bubble games, football, bowling, and more! Indoors. $5 admission, free parking, handicap accessible.
  • Michigan Festival of Sacred Music, October 2020 dates TBD, Festival of concerts, workshops and presentations, representing many faiths. The idea is to bring sacred music and associated cultural tenets to Southwestern Michigan and promote mutual understanding and respect among persons of different religious persuasions.
  • Scarecrow Fest, South Main St. Frankenmuth, October 17-18, 2020. Special scarecrows are displayed throughout downtown with a family-friendly festival at Frankenmuth River Place Shops! We love this October Michigan event!
  • Michigan Brewers Guild Detroit Fall Beer Festival, October 24, 2020 - 1pm to 6pm ($50 in advance; $55 day of the event. 2934 Russel St. - Eastern Market Detroit. This is one of the largest all-Michigan beer tastings in the area.  Enjoy some incredible food from Detroit area restaurants while listing to music.  Sample any of the 600 craft beers from over 75 Michigan breweries.
  • Kalamazoo Craft Fair Kalamazoo Expo Center, October 24, 2020, 9 am–3 pm Free!
  • Lightsaber Pub Crawls, October 23, 2020, Locations in Ann Arbor, Detroit and Grand Rapids. $15,000 costume contest!
  • Kalamazoo's Ultimate Indoor Garage Sale, October 24, 2020 8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Kalamazoo Expo Center
  • Saugatuck’s Annual Halloween Kids & Pet Parade, Oct 2020 date tbd, Wicks Park, Saugatuck, 3:30 pm, Free

Have you Ever Picked Chestnuts?  

Kastanu Farms has U Pick Chestnuts usually ready in October for you to pick on the weekends.  Check their Facebook Page for info! What an awesome October Michigan event!

The address to check in for U-Pick is: 11943 Campbell Rd., Kewadin, MI 49648

Michigan Farms to Visit in October (Can You Say DONUTS?!)

Gull Meadow Farms-Richland, MI. Pumpkins, delicious donuts and a corn maze.  We used to go there weekly when we lived in the area.  There is a train for kids and a tractor drawn hay wagon for the whole family.  Great place!! What a fun October Michigan event! We love it!

Uncle Johns Cider Mill-8614 US-127, St Johns, MI.  Gorgeous barn with hard ciders and treats!

Grandma's Pumpkin Patch-4277 N Eastman Rd, Midland, MI 48642

Leaman's Green Applebarn-7475 N. River Road, Freeland, MI.  Cider and donuts are a must. Baked goods are outstanding!

Baynes Apple Valley-5395 Midland Road, Freeland, MI Awarded Mid-Michigan's Best Orchard 3 years in a row! Great homemade baked goods and fresh pressed pure apple cider. We love grabbing a sandwich in the cute shop and grabbing some fresh cider on the way out! Great place to meet friends during October Michigan afternoons!

Coveyou Scenic Farms-4160 US-131, Petoskey, MI We loved our stop at Coveyou Scenic Farm market, the owners are super friendly and the market has so many great things! We purchased bottles of syrup and a pumpkin!

Pond Hill Farms-5699 S Lake Shore Dr, Harbor Springs, MI.  If you are out and about for Michigan fall color tours, be sure to stop at Pond Hill Farms to enjoy fresh warm donuts and cider around their bon fire!  There's a cafe and pumpkin launching too! Super fun October Michigan things to do!

When Will the Fall Colors Peek in Michigan?

Click here for the estimated dates!

Embark on Michigan Fall Color Tours by Train!

UPDATE: In accordance with both local and state health officials, the Steam Railroading Institute (SRI) has decided to not operate any excursions in 2020. This includes the annual Fall Color Tours and North Pole Express.

Pere-Marquette 1225 Color Tour Train-October 2020 dates CANCELLED DUE TO COVID. 190 W. Cass Street, Cadillac, MI.  The Steam Railroading Institute will be commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the Michigan State University Railroad Club and their initial restoration of the 1225 with an all-day excursion behind the world-famous steam locomotive.

Northern Arrow Fall Color Tour-October 2020 dates CANCELLED DUE TO COVID. Departing from Kalkaska, MI. The Northern Arrow will depart at 10:00am each day from the railroad depot at the Kalkaska Historical Museum for a roundtrip, all-day excursion to Petoskey. Awesome chance to see the colors and relax with friends and family along the way! 

Clare Countryside Fall Color Tour-CANCELLED Clare, 2:00 p.m.

Here is a link for reservations!

Planning Ahead...

In accordance with both local and state health officials, the Steam Railroading Institute (SRI) has decided to not operate any excursions in 2020. This includes the annual Fall Color Tours and North Pole Express.

North Pole Express (FOR PLANNING AHEAD PURPOSES AS IT SELLS OUT VERY QUICKLY)-Saturdays and Sundays, November 16th to December 21st. Departing from Owosso, MI. Embark on a nostalgic journey back in time to the Christmas of yesteryear when you climb aboard the North Pole Express, pulled by the world-famous Pere Marquette 1225! Depart from the Steam Railroading Institute for a four-hour, round trip excursion to the Village of Ashley’s Country Christmas. 

We hope you enjoy our exciting October Michigan events and ideas of fun things to do!

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Need More Inspiration! Check out my posts about these destinations for more FUN THINGS TO DO IN MICHIGAN!

Disclaimer: Please be sure to visit a particular event's website to verify dates, times, happenings and details.  We make every possible effort to be verify these the event details but as we are human, mistakes can occur and event dates/times can change.  If you see an error below, PLEASE let us know and we will correct it.

Event Centers in Michigan

Still bored? Don't forget to check these Michigan event centers/theaters/auditoriums across Michigan for concerts, events, shows or comedy entertainment! 

Here are a few Michigan event centers to inspire you!  

  • Cobo Hall-Detroit
  • Midland Center for the Arts-Midland
  • Dow Gardens-Midland
  • Kalamazoo State Theatre
  • Fire Keepers Casino
  • Soaring Eagle Casino-Mt. Pleasant
  • Wings Event Center-Kalamazoo
  • Miller Auditorium-Kalamazoo
  • Civic Auditorium-Kalamazoo
  • Chenery Auditorium-Kalamazoo
  • Kellogg Arena-Battle Creek
  • LMC Mendel Center-Benton Harbor
  • Franke Center for the Arts-Marshall
  • The Bob-Grand Rapids
  • Van Andel-Grand Rapids
  • Devos Place-Grand Rapids
  • Dow Event Center-Saginaw

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Butterflies will soon be blooming! Don't miss out! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ So guys, I'M SUPER EXCITED for Frederik Meijer Gardens in Grand Rapids (March 1- April 30, 2019) and Dow Gardens in Midland (March 1-April 21, 2019) to open their butterfly houses! So mark your calendars! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ It's such a great break from our cold blustery winter to enjoy these little fluttery beings!! I like to visit several times as the light changes and different species of butterflies have emerged!⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ HUGE TIPS FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS: I always call ahead to see if there is a school group scheduled for the day of my visit...just sayin'. Also, I like to get there first thing in the morning when it's quiet and hopefully less traffic. Some places won't let you bring tripods so check ahead. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Please let me know of any other butterfly houses in MI that you love as I would like to check out some new locations this year!⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #liveauthentic #beauty #nature #Michigan #puremichigan #greatlakesstate #travelingmichigan #michiganders #mittensmitten #butterflies #butterflies_lovers #butterfliesofinstagram #buterfliesandflowers #butterflieseverywhere #loving_butterflies #butterflyhouse #welivetoexplore #colorful #naturelovers #getoutdoors #adventure #instaphotographer #landscape #wanderlust #outdoors #keepitwild #fredrikmeyergardens⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #simplyadventure #lifeofadventure

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