Bay City Tall Ships Festival is a Must-See Family Event!

By Sherry Trautman | Traveling Michigan

Bay City Tall Ships Celebration is an absolute must-see fun family event.  Enjoy maritime-themed music as you tour vintage sailing ships on both sides of the Saginaw River, wave to the spirited pirate stilt walkers, learn about life on a tall ship and grab a photo as you steer the ship!

Every July, the waterfront city of Bay City gears up for its much-anticipated Tall Ship Celebration.  The festival draws thousands of pirate and ship loving fans. It's a festival we never miss!  

My friend Allison and I are considering the pirate life after donning our pirate hats and taking control of the wheel!

"You can always trust the untrustworthy because you can always trust that they will be untrustworthy. Its the trustworthy you can’t trust."
– Captain Jack Sparrow

Climb Aboard Matey! 

There's a fee of approximately $10 per person to enter the festival grounds and few the ships from the ground. 

If you wish to tour the ships, you will need to obtain a passport book that is $10 at the time of this writing.  This passport book allows you to tour all of the ships.  

Bay City Tall Ships Tips and Know Before You Go

  • We highly recommend that you arrive early as the heat is usually quite intense in the afternoons.
  • The ships are positioned on both sides of the river so you will need to walk over the bridge to tour the other ships.  Be mindful of traffic on the bridge as it is not closed to vehicles during the festival. 
  • Again, arrive early as the lines to board the ships get very long by noon.
  • You must stand in line for each ship so pick your top 4 favorites and start there. You may find it's too hot to see all of them and you won't want to miss your favorites.
  • There are vendors for food available on the festival grounds
  • Porta-Johns are available
  • There are white tents available for shade and rain relief.
  • Your purses and bags will be searched before entering the festival grounds.
  • We brought in water bottles but glass is not allowed.

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Had the funniest conversation with this talented artist at the Bay City Tall Ships Celebration yesterday. He said all the good artists were down further and when I balked at that statement, he says, "WELL I guess that's the only way I can get a complement!" LOL! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ There were several artists painting the gorgeous tall ships. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ I loved watching them work! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ All of the paintings produced are for sale at Studio 23 in Bay City. How cool is that?!⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #tallship #baycitymi #baycitytallships #baycitymichigan #tallships #michigan #michigander #visitbaycitymi #onlyinmichigan #michigansummers #summer #laketown #lakehuron #michiganfestivals #puremi #puremichiganders #puremichigan #michigantravel #greatlakesstate #michiganstate #travelingmichigan #greatlakesstateofmind #puremittenpride #lovemichigan #exploremichigan #puremittigan #greatlakeslocals ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #midwestmoment #oilpainters #michiganart

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There are so many things to do and see in Bay City, Michigan and nearby Midland, Michigan.  Plan to spend the weekend so you can relax and enjoy the beautiful region!  No reason to hurry home after the festival!

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