Ann Arbor Activities


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First Street Garden Inn Boutique B & B in Downtown Ann Arbor

We have gathered information on things to see and do in Ann Arbor or within day-trip distance of the inn. We love visitors. Share it with your friends and loved ones, and if you do come to town, give us a call.

Note:  All information in this resource has been gathered from outside sources and may not be current. Before going to any locations listed here, please call or email to confirm hours and locations. First Street Garden Inn is providing this information as a service to our guests and cannot be held responsible for incorrect or changing information.

Ann Arbor Area Events/Activities/Sights coming up soon

Oct.—Dec. 2016 +

FALL COLOR TOUR      Jackson – Ann Arbor – Monroe

For a dose of Michigan history with your fall color tour, take this 195-mile trip through southeast Lower Peninsula and follow old Indian trails and territorial roads, an early tavern, a battlefield, the hometown of an infamous general, and even a winery or two. The colors along the mostly two-lane highway route are usually best from mid-to-late October.

The Brass Tacks Ensemble Presenting  NO EXIT

a biting and sometimes comic revelation that “relationships are hell.”

November 4-20, 2016, at the Children’s Creative Center, 1600 Pauline Blvd, Ann Arbor, MI 48103.

Shows Times: 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and 2 p.m. on Sundays.  $15 general admission/$5 students. Call/text for reservations 734. 926.5376 or email: Group tickets available. Mature content: discretion is advised.


Since 1999, with their inaugural production of King Lear, The Brass Tacks Ensemble has been dedicated to producing shows that strip away the excess and focus on the essentials of theater: Actor. Text. Audience. The Brass Tacks Ensemble is devoted to connecting to the audience through the essential elements of theater to spark the imagination; presenting established and original works with a focus on clarity, universality, and entertainment; and providing actors, directors, designers, and writers the opportunity to develop as artists. Actors and Directors interested in being a part of the Season Ensemble can fill out an application available at our website.  People interested in being involved in both an acting and a directing capacity should fill out both applications. Take a look at the description and materials to audition for the 2017 Season Ensemble, featuring William Shakespeare. Applications are due via email by October 30, 2016.  For questions contact

College Student Food Stars Comes to Ann Arbor

Sunday, November 13, At the Holiday Inn Near the University of Michigan and Guy Hollerin’s Ann Arbor Bar & Grill. The heat is on as Michigan students chop, slice, melt, and microwave their way to the top spot in the second annual College Student Food Stars! One college student. One cooking appliance. Three ingredients. A $10 budget and a cooking time of 10 minutes or less. This is the challenge presented to college students to prepare a best tasting dish, if they choose to accept it. Eight finalists will prepare their dishes in front of a live audience and a panel of judges consisting of well-known media and industry folks.

The Business of Graphic Design Boot Camp

Friday, November 11   8:30am-4:00pm  Morris Lawrence Building, ML101     FREE to WCC Students   Click To Register      Download the flyer

U of M Lecture:  Distinguished University Professor Lecture: June Manning Thomas  Mary Frances Berry Distinguished University Professor of Urban Planning

Friday, Nov. 11, 2016 at 6:00 p.m. at U of M Art & Architecture Bldg Auditorium, Rm. 2104. Centennial Professor of Urban and Regional Planning, June Manning Thomas will give the Mary Frances Berry Distinguished University of Michigan Professor of Urban Planning Lecture at Taubman College. As one of nine faculty members university-wide to receive this top faculty honor this year, Professor Thomas is also the first faculty member at Taubman College to receive this prestigious designation.

50 Years of Civil Rights Leadership: A U-M Symposium in honor of Rev. Jesse Jackson

Wednesday, November 16, 2016, 10:00 am, at Rackham Building, 915 E Washington St., Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (link is external)  TICKET REQUIRED FOR KEYNOTE  FREE! TICKETS REQUIRED FOR THE 4:00 PM KEYNOTE EVENT WITH REVEREND JESSE JACKSON. TICKETS MUST BE PICKED UP IN PERSON AT THE MICHIGAN UNION TICKET OFFICE BEGINNING TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2016.  The event takes place just days after the presidential election: come hear America’s foremost civil rights leader reflect on the campaigns–and on the future of the struggle for economic, political, and social justice and peace.  Join in on the conversation: #RevJacksonLegacy

Opportunity in Michigan: Lessons from leading education states.  Amber Arellano (Mpp ’03), Executive Director Of The Education Trust-Midwest

Free and open to the public. Wednesday, November 09, 2016, 11:30 am to 1:00 pm  at Weill Hall, Betty Ford Classroom (1110) 735 S. State Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (link is external) Sponsored by: The Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy (CLOSUP). For more information call 734-647-4091.  Follow on Twitter @closup   Amber Arellano (MPP ’03) is the executive director of The Education Trust-Midwest(link is external). She oversees the organization’s direction on Michigan education policy and research, public engagement, external relations and operations.

University of Michigan Museum of Art  

(within walking distance of First Street Garden Inn)

Exhibition: Catie Newell: Overnight 

Date(s): 06/11/16 – 11/06/16  University of Michigan – Museum of Art   (734) 764-3731  or  (734) 764-0395

Detroit-based architect Catie Newell’s work is focused on the tactile, sensory qualities of the materials we use to build things: their texture, density, or malleability.

Moving Image: Landscape 

Date(s): 07/30/16 – 11/27/16   University of Michigan – Museum of Art    (734) 764-3731

Throughout the next year, UMMA will present three exhibitions drawn from the Borusan Contemporary Art Collection in Istanbul. The Borusan’s 30-year-old collection includes significant works across a variety of genres.

In Focus: Modern Japanese Folk Ceramics

Date(s): 08/09/16 – 10/30/16  University of Michigan – Museum of Art  (734) 764-3731   Type: Exhibits & Shows.

Artist and poet Ann Holmes first encountered Japanese folk ceramics while living in Tokyo in the late 1960s. Fascinated by the simple aesthetic, the craftsmanship, and the makers’ unassuming personalities and ways of life.

Europe on Paper: The Ernst Pulgram and Frances McSparran Collection

Date(s): 10/15/16 – 01/29/17  University of Michigan – Museum of Art (734) 764-3731       Type: Exhibits & Shows. Visually stunning, thought-provoking, and wide-ranging, Europe on Paper: The Ernst Pulgram and Frances McSparran Collection features 47 works on paperdrawings, prints, and watercolors from the eighteenth to the twentieth century.

Japanese Prints of Kabuki Theater from the Collection of the University of Michigan Museum of Art     (734) 764-3731

Date(s): 10/15/16 – 01/29/17   University of Michigan – Museum of Art

Type: Exhibits & Shows.  Kabuki actors were superstars in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Japan. They were admired by passionate fans with an insatiable appetite for images of them, fed by a publishing industry that mass-produced colorful woodblock prints.

Traces: Reconstructing the History of a Chokwe Mask

Date(s): 10/22/16 – 01/22/17     University of Michigan – Museum of Art    (734) 764-3731  Type: Exhibits & Shows.

The exhibition Traces focuses on one artwork from the Museum’s African holdings: a Chokwe mask that was collected in 1905 near the Angolan city of Dundo by the German explorer Leo Frobenius.

 The Aesthetic Movement: Artists of the Photo-Secession

Date(s): 10/29/16 – 03/12/17     Type: Exhibits & Shows   From: University of Michigan – Museum of Art  Phone: (734) 764-3731

Pictorialism was the first truly international photography movement, and its practitioners, among them Alfred Stieglitz, Edward Steichen and Gertrude Kasebier, sought to position photography as a legitimate aesthetic art form.

Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra

(Most performances within walking distance of First Street Garden Inn)

Tchaikovsky and Friends

Date: 11/11/16  Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra     Phone: (734) 994-4801       Type: Exhibits & Shows   Fri., Nov. 11, 2016 at 8:00 pm

Michigan Theater.   Daugherty Strut Shostakovich Violin Concerto Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 6 “Pathetique” Featuring: Aaron Berofsky, violin. Experience the rich heritage of your favorite Russian composers.

The Music of Harry Potter

Date: 11/12/16  Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra            Type: Exhibits & Shows     Phone: (734) 994-4801    Sat, Nov. 12, 2016,  8 pm

Michigan Theater 6:30- 7:30 The Music of Harry Potter.   Muggle Photo booth and Cocktails.   Journey through all the movie adventures of Harry Potter with these musical theme and more!

The Music of Harry Potter (Family Fun)

Date: 11/13/16 Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra    Phone: (734) 994-4801 Type: Exhibits & Shows.  Sun., Nov. 13, 2016. 4 pm

Pre-concert activities 2:30-3:30 pm.  Ann Arbor Hands on Museum.  The Music of Harry Potter.  Instrument Petting Zoo. Owls from the Leslie Science Center.  Sponsored by Toyota. Journey through all the movie adventures.

Holiday Pops

Date: 12/09/16   Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra    Friday, Dec 9, 2016, at 8:00 p.m.  Hill Auditorium  Phone: (734) 994-4801      Type: Exhibits & Shows, Holiday. Holiday Pops.  Featuring your holiday favorites! Special guests: Measure for Measure, Pioneer, Huron and Saline H.S. Choruses.  Start your weekend with a festive mix of orchestra and voice.

Saline Craft Show – Saline

Date(s): 11/12/16       Type: Antiques, Crafts & Collectibles, Exhibits & Shows

From: Ann Arbor Area Convention & Visitors Bureau    Phone: (734) 429-5922  The Saline Craft Show is rated as one of the top 10 shows in Michigan. This annual event is hosted at Saline Middle School, 7190 N. Maple Road, Saline. 270 craft persons will showcase their most recent and exceptional work.

 54th Annual Fall Coin Show – Livonia

Date(s): 11/06/16    Phone: (512) 522-3743

From: Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau   The Northwest Detroit Coin Club (NWDCC) is hosting it’s 54th Annual Fall Coin Show on Sunday – November 6, 2016. Parking is Free; Admission is Free; anyone interested in the hobby is welcome to attend.

 National Touring Season featuring Owen Campbell – Tecumseh

Date: 11/05/16   From: Tecumseh Center for the Arts   Phone: (517) 423-6617

When Owen Campbell’s bluesy vocals cut loose, his smoky delivery serves up images of a veteran blues guitarist and singer, with a touch of The Band’s Robbie Robertson mixed in. Campbell defies easy categorization. He’s a slide…

Dearborn Porcelain Artists Annual Show & Sale – Dearborn

Date: 11/19/16        From: Dearborn Chamber of Commerce
Phone: (313) 562-1386          Type: Antiques, Crafts & Collectibles

The Dearborn Porcelain Artists Annual Show & Sale, Saturday, November 19 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the historic McFadden Ross Museum in Dearborn, Michigan. Admission $2.

Novi Equestrian Expo – Novi

Date(s): 12/02/16 – 12/04/16        Type: Exhibits & Shows
From: Suburban Collection Showplace        Phone: (248) 348-5600

The 22nd Annual Novi Equestrian Expo is thrilled to welcome nationally renowned equine clinicians Stacey Westfall and Ken McNabb! The Expo features exciting riding exhibitions and breed demonstrations– plus an extensive shopping area.



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