Weko Beach in Bridgman is the place to be June 11, from 1-9 p.m. with the return of one of the favorite annual events. The Southwestern Michigan Tourist Council has announced the return of the Makers Trail Festival, the beach party that highlights the beverages of Michigan’s Great Southwest.
Guests can try new and go-to-favorites from local Southwest Michigan craft beer, wine, cider and spirit makers using beverage tickets purchased when they arrive. The organizers have also stacked the lineup with beach music to dance and chill out to. Listen by the lake to these four bands pumping out their playlists all festival long: Pablo’s Great Revenge, The Tribute Band, Red Deluxe Band and Top Secret.
But it doesn’t stop there. Guests can try local favorite food trucks which will be dishing out fresh, summer flavors that taste great with their wine, brew, cider and spirit choices. There will also be water, soda and juices for designated drivers, younger festival goers and people who want to party but opt out of drinking.
“Our local makers have loved welcoming visitors back to their locations as the pandemic threat lessens,” Millicent Huminsky, executive director of the Tourist Council, said. “We’re excited to enjoy and share that company collectively at our third annual Makers Trail Festival.”
Those interested in attending should buy tickets ahead of time. Advanced entry tickets are $10 each for ages 10 and up. Tickets purchased at the gate on festival day are $20 each. Children under 10 years old get in free, making this a perfect event for the family.
This is a cash-only event. So guests should bring cash money to buy drink tasting tickets ($1 each) and food from vendors. There will be free parking with free shuttles. Shuttles will run frequently throughout the event for guests to come and go when they want. Parking locations will be just a couple miles away from Weko Beach and will be posted closer to the event. There will be no parking available at Weko Beach.
Come rain or shine — there will be plenty of room for everyone under the big tents. Guests are welcome to bring their own camping chairs, too. However, pets, coolers, drinks and food should be left outside the gates – they’re not allowed on the festival grounds. No smoking is permitted, either.
“We anticipate a big crowd with the return of this popular festival. The more volunteers the merrier,” Colleen Ryan, event coordinator, said. “Volunteers get free entry to the festival so they can still enjoy the event, too.”
Those interested in volunteering should fill out the volunteer form on the Makers Trail website. The deadline is mid-May, but sign up NOW to get preferred shifts. Festival shifts will be from 1-5 p.m. and 5-9 p.m. Volunteers need to check in 15 minutes prior to their shift starting.
For more information, visit makerstrailfestival.org or call 269-925-6301. For current news and updates, please “Like” the Makers Trail Facebook page and check “Interested” or “Going” on the Makers Trail Festival event.
The Southwestern Michigan Tourist Council connects visitors and locals alike with things to do in Berrien, Cass and Van Buren Counties. View their curated itineraries, Makers Trail and Creative Connections destinations, blogs, trail guides, newsletters and more online. For more information, visit https://swmichigan.org or https://www.facebook.com/swmtc/, or call 269-925-6301.