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Christmas & Holiday Activities Up North

November-December, 2023


The holiday season in Northern Michigan begins Thanksgiving weekend. Unlike the big cities where Black Friday is a mad rush of people, the Christmas shopping season kicks off here with Christmas tree lightings, decorated stores, a holiday parade, merchant open houses, and smiles from shoppers and storekeepers. Shop local? Absolutely!

Christmas shopping in Northern Michigan is the way shopping is supposed to be. Friendly and knowledgeable shopkeepers can help you fulfill your gift list in a fun and enjoyable setting. Plan a weekend Christmas shopping get away to Northern Michigan and meander through Petoskey, Harbor Springs, Charlevoix, Boyne City, Mackinaw City, or Indian River.

Things to Do

Did we mention snow? Our ski resorts generally open on Thanksgiving weekend and skiers can’t wait to get fresh wax on the skis and hit the slopes.

Northern Michigan has three of the country’s best ski resorts right here so spend a day at each to them: Nub’s Nob, Boyne Highlands, and Boyne Mountain. Check the daily ski conditions and look at the webcams for a current look at action on the hills.

Northern Michigan has  a great line up of fabulous places to explore while cross country skiing and snowshoeing with choices near Harbor Springs, Petoskey, Boyne City, and Charlevoix. And with ice rinks and sledding hills in every community, skating and sledding is great way to spend the holidays Up North.

For those who enjoy snowmobiling, you’re in luck Up North. Trails, trails, trails! Bundle up and hit the snowmobile trails for a great time for the entire family.

Here are Events & Activities that Generally Take Place During the Holiday Season Up North:


  • Friday, November 24th, 2023 – Boyne City Parade & Open House
  • TBA – Walloon Lake Village Lighting
  • TBA – Christmas in Indian River
  • TBA – Charlevoix Merchant Open House, Holiday Parade, & Tree Lighting 
  • TBA – Petoskey Holiday Parade and Tree Lighting
  • TBA – Harbor Springs Tree Lighting


  • TBA – Petoskey’s Holiday Open House
  • TBA – Sleigh Rides to “the North Pole
  • TBA – Charlevoix Holiday Merchant Open House & Hot Cocoa Contest
  • TBA – Harbor Springs Merchants Holiday Open House
  • TBA – Alanson Community Open House
  • TBA – Mackinaw City Christmas in Mackinaw
  • TBA – Colonial Christmas at Fort Michilimackinac
  • TBA New Year’s Eve Celebration at Crooked Tree Art Center

Stay tuned for updated information on Christmas and holiday activities in Northern Michigan for 2023!

Current Events in Northern Michigan

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Activities & Attractions in Northern Michigan

Maple Syrup Time

Maple Syrup Season

Spring brings lots of outdoor activities to Northern Michigan but one often ends up on pancakes: making maple syrup.

Beaver Island

Beaver Island Up North

Beaver Island is located 32 miles offshore of Charlevoix, Michigan and is the largest island in Lake Michigan.

Up North Snowmobiling

With miles of scenic trails terrain and local snowmobile clubs, Northern Michigan is the place to bring the snow sleds in the winter.