PETOSKEY — Northern Michigan can celebrate summer’s waning days as the Petoskey Regional Chamber of Commerce presents the 17th annual Festival on the Bay.
The event kicked off Thursday, and continues through Saturday evening with live music, kids activities and more.
“Festival on the Bay is intended to be that one of a kind festival that gives you the opportunity for live music, great food and family fun,” said Petoskey Chamber events and communications director Nikki Devitt. “It is a waterfront, fun festival for everyone.”
While the chamber will be heading the event, several different groups will be collaborating to make the festival as special as possible.
“We team up with several different organizations throughout as well that do different independent events,” Devitt said.
Examples of those outside organziations include the YMCA, which is offering a fun run, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northwestern Michigan, with an art contest; and the City of Petoskey, hosting a cornhole tournament.
While there will be plenty to do during the days of the festival, there is always one component that stands out.
“The signature part of the festival is all the live entertainment under the big tent in the ball field on Thursday, Friday and Saturday,” Devitt said.
The entrance fee for the entertainment tent is $5. Devitt said that drink and food prices are also reasonable, as the chamber stresses affordability as a feature of the festival. The children’s area involves a $2 fee to participate and there are free shuttles running from North Central Michigan College to the festival, so issues with parking are minimized.
Festival on the Bay is a little different than many of the carnival-style events commonly thrown in Northern Michigan. With events like a duck drop, a cardboard boat race and much more, this festival is unique.
“It’s not a fair type (of event),” Devitt said. “It’s more about music and community and enjoying all our waterfront has to offer.”
Throughout the three days of the festival, there will be vendors on the waterfront midway selling food and an assortment of other goods. Examples of the participating organizations include Chillbean, which will offer inflatable hammocks for sale; Sink or Swim, selling apparel; the Petoskey District Library, selling used books.
More than anything, Devitt said she hopes to see Festival on the Bay bring people together.
“This is a great way to take your family and friends together and take some time and celebrate,” she said.