Benzie County Kicks off Summer 2017 with a Better-than-Ever Vacation Getaway Package

Posted on April 17th, 2017

Benzonia, Michigan (April 17, 2017) – The Benzie County Visitors Bureau, located in the heart of Benzie County in Northwest Michigan, is offering a fantastic getaway package for visitors who stay for two consecutive nights at one of several participating lodging locations between Memorial Day Weekend (beginning May 27) and October 31, 2017. The summer and fall vacation package called “Benzie Treasure Trove” has a $300 value with over 24 free gifts and value priced offerings. The vacation package was created to help visitors explore more of Benzie County and have new experiences along the way. See visitbenzie.com for a complete list of all items. Some of the offers are listed below:

The “Benzie Treasure Trove” package includes the following free items:

  • A free slice of cherry pie from the historic Cherry Hut Restaurant,
  • A free Root Beer Float from the A&W Restaurant & Drive In,
  • Free logo pint glass from Lake Ann Brewing Company,
  • Free snack sausages from Port City Smokehouse,
  • Free breadsticks from A. Papano’s Pizza (three locations),
  • Free small coffee at Perks of Frankfort,
  • A free leather key chain or Frisbee from Rustic Resort.

Other free food items with purchase are being offered from Stormcloud Brewing Company, Iron Fish Distillery, The Garden Theater, Crescent Bakery, Cold Creek Inn, and Geno’s Sports Bar and Grill.

Buy-one-get-one offers in the package include:

  • Hot fudge sundaes from Hill Top Soda Shop,
  • Medium sized cones, sundaes or shakes from Dairy King,
  • Plant from Betsie River Centennial Lily Farm,
  • Daily admission to the new children’s activity center COGnition,
  • Tour of Point Betsie Lighthouse,
  • One hour kayak or tube rental at Hanmer’s Riverside Resort & Livery,
  • Float tube rental on the Lower Platte River at The Honor Trading Post,
  • Rides on the Crystal Coaster at Crystal Mountain, and golf at Crystal Mountain’s Betsie Valley Course.

Golf specials at Champion Hill or Pinecroft Golf Courses include Two -18 Holes w/ Cart for $80.
Conundrum Café is offering 4-hour bike rental for $16 (up to 4 bikes at this price per coupon).

All of the offer details and restrictions are listed at visitbenzie.com under “Benzie Treasure Trove”.

There are many lodging choices in Benzie County, including cottages, cabins, inns, motels and condos. For participating lodging locations in the “Benzie Treasure Trove” Vacation Package, as well as, an entire listing of all lodging see www.visitbenzie.com. For assistance with lodging choices, call the Benzie County Visitors Bureau at 800-882-5801.

Visitors can plan their getaway vacation to Benzie County and participate in the “Benzie Treasure Trove” by signing up online at www.visitbenzie.com *.

General Information about Benzie County

Benzie County is a perfect vacation getaway with friendly towns and villages such as Frankfort, Elberta, Honor, Thompsonville, Beulah, Benzonia, and Lake Ann plus the majestic Crystal Lake. Benzie County has spectacular beaches along the majestic Crystal Lake and Lake Michigan, over 100 miles of biking and hiking trails, and great restaurants and shops. Perfectly situated along the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Benzie County has nearly 30 miles of Lake Michigan coastline, 57 inland lakes, approximately 200 miles of rivers. Outdoors activities in the spring, summer and fall include fishing, golfing, biking, hiking, running, kayaking, paddle boarding and more.

Benzie County is only 130 miles north of Grand Rapids, 235 miles north of Detroit, 290 miles north of Chicago, 295 miles north of Fort Wayne and 380 miles north of Indianapolis. Plan a couple of days or more and get a true flavor of the relaxed pace and exquisite natural beauty of Benzie County.

Sports and Recreation in Benzie County

Benzie County is known as “the best place in Michigan for Outdoor Sports & Recreation.” Outdoor activities cater to a wide variety of sports and recreational interests including biking, hiking, running, golf, fishing, kite boarding, kayaking and more. Championship level to intermediate and beginning golfers have plenty of choices at area courses which boast natural beauty and magnificent scenic views. There are locations for renting golf clubs, bikes, kayaks and other recreational equipment, as well. Beaches along Lake Michigan and Crystal Lake, one of the largest inland lakes in Michigan, are among the most beautiful in the state of Michigan. Benzie County and Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore have over 100 miles of hiking and biking trails and wildlife habitats for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers. Among these, The Betsie Valley Trail that spans from Frankfort, in the North, through Beulah and Benzonia to Thompsonville, in the south, has 22 miles of paved and compacted aggregate trail.

Galleries, Antiques, and Art Festivals in Benzie County

From art galleries to antiques and home furnishings, Benzie County has many unique shops and shopping experiences. For the interior designer, art enthusiastic and home furnishing buyer, Benzie County has a large selection of showrooms and art galleries to explore. The modern Elizabeth Lane Oliver Art Center located in Frankfort was created in the former Coast Guard Station along the Betsie Bay and is just steps from Lake Michigan. Besides its picturesque setting, the Center is devoted to ongoing art exhibitions, special events, classes and art sales. Art Festivals include the Beulah Art Fair on July 8, and the Frankfort Art Fair on August 18 &19.

Family & Kids Activities in Benzie County

Warm weather months draw families with children to Benzie County due to the lovely beaches along Lake Michigan and beautiful Crystal Lake and the hometown charm of Benzie County’s friendly villages and towns. With over 50 lakes and two rivers in Benzie County, families can experience fishing, boating, kayaking, canoeing, and paddle boarding. Kids programs are offered at the Elizabeth Lane Oliver Art Center in Frankfort and the new children’s activity center COGnition in Beulah. Crystal Mountain in Thompsonville offers many children’s programs for guests who stay at the resort and to visitors who pay a fee for activities such as an elevated rope and zip line course, a large pool for older children, a wading pool for toddlers, and mountain biking, golf and paintball courses for teens. Visitors who are adventurous can try Crystal Mountain’s Crystal Coaster Alpine Slide, an action-packed thrill ride on one of its ski mountains. And the relaxing Crystal Spa is wonderful for parents who want to get away from the hustle and bustle and enjoy a luxurious spa service.

Winery, Breweries, and Distillery tastings and Culinary Offerings

Four unique beverage producers are excited to share their products with visitors to Benzie County. The popular Stormcloud Brewing Company in Frankfort offers their own unique award-winning selection of Belgian-style craft beer, select ciders from the region, as well as, great food. St. Ambrose Cellars in Beulah offers award winning wines and meads and antipasto plates to enjoy them. Iron Fish Distillery in Thompsonville that opened in fall 2016 is Michigan’s first dedicated full line distillery located on a working farm offering a line of locally produced spirits including bourbon finished in maple syrup barrels, Michigan wheat white whiskey, Michigan white rum made with a touch of Benzie County produced honey, and Michigan winter wheat vodka. Lake Ann Brewing Co. in Lake Ann, the casual rustic “upnorth” brewery, focuses on making ales using American ale yeast & Pacific Northwest hops. They specialize in craft beers, as well as local ciders, mead & wine. They have a light snack menu, but you can order from the eatery just steps away & have it delivered to your table at the brewery. All four places are a unique tasting experience and worth the exploration across beautiful natural areas of Benzie County to wet your whistle.

After a day outdoors in whatever activity suits one’s fancy, enjoy one of many unique restaurants in Benzie County to make the experience complete. Among many locally owned restaurants, food is hearty at Stormcloud Brewing Company, Coho Café, Villa Marine Food and Spirits, The Hotel Frankfort and Dinghy’s Restaurant and Bar in Frankfort, The Cabbage Shed in Elberta, The Cherry Hut, L’Chayim Delicatessen, Cold Creek Inn and Hungry Tummy Restaurant and Bar in Beulah, Crystal Café and Roadhouse Mexican Bar and Grill in Benzonia, Platte River Inn and Papa J’s in Honor, the Thistle Pub and Grille at Crystal Mountain, and Geno’s Sports Bar and Grill in Thompsonville. Benzie County also has two food trucks – Grow Benzie and Mary’s Asian Cuisine that travel to various locations throughout the summer and fall.

MAY

12th Annual Michigan Beer & Brat Festival
Crystal Mountain, Thompsonville
Saturday May 27, 2017

Enjoy a Memorial Day weekend tradition at Crystal Mountain at the Michigan Beer and Brat Festival. The event features live entertainment slope side while sampling over 75 of Michigan’s finest microbrews, local hard cider and mead, and gourmet brats from northwest Michigan markets. Participating breweries include Stormcloud, Bell’s, North Peak, Founders, Shorts, Right Brain and more. For more information see www.crystalmountain.com/events/beerfest or call (844) 584-2733.

4th Annual North Mitten Half Marathon & 10k
Crystal Mountain, Thompsonville
Sunday – May 28, 2017

The North Mitten Half Marathon and 10K & 5k are a combination of paved roads, dirt roads and trails. The North Mitten route consists of primarily flat, open trails on Crystal Mountain property and will not climb the mountain. The races will start and finish near Crystal’s Clipper chairlift. This is a great spring race for beginners, as well as, experienced runners! Runners must register online (registration now open) and is limited to the first 750 runners. Entry fee is non-refundable. For more information see http://www.crystalmountain.com/events/north-mitten or call the Park at Water’s Edge, 888.968.7686, ext. 7000.

JUNE

Bike Benzie Tour & Fondo
Crystal Mountain, Thompsonville
Saturday, June 3, 2017

Bike Benzie Tour offers three rides through beautiful terrain in Benzie County. The tour offers 30, 62 and 100-mile options that will challenge riders of all ages and abilities. There are food stops along the way featuring regional snacks and more. Riders looking to challenge themselves against the clock can take part in the Bike Benzie Fondo. Register online at crystalmountain.com/events/bike-benzie-tour or call (844) 584-2733 for more information.

Watervale Inn Home Walking Tour
Saturday, June 10, 2017

Watervale Inn will host an historic home tour that will benefit the Benzie Historical Society.  This is a self-guided walking tour of Watervale Inn’s cottages and grounds with a cocktail reception on the terrace from 4-7.  Tickets are $20.00. For more information contact Watervale Inn at Admin@Watervaleinn.com or call 231-352-9083.

Frankfort 48
Frankfort
June 22-24, 2017

Aspiring filmmakers and those with photography and film interests are invited come to Frankfort, Michigan on June 22nd to create a 3-to-5 minute film celebrating the beauty of northern Michigan. Participants will have 48 hours to conceive their ideas, scout locations, film, edit, and present their masterpieces. Prizes will be awarded to the top three filmmakers. The public is invited to attend the film showing featuring the winning films on Saturday, June 24 starting at 6:30 pm – $10 fee to attend. For more information about participating in this competition see www.Frankfort48.com.

Michigan PGA Women’s Open Pro-Am
Thompsonville – Crystal Mountain
June 23-25, 2017

One of the premier Michigan golfing events, The Michigan PGA Women’s Open features some of the best professional and amateur women golfers from around Michigan and across the country. For more information see www.crystalmountain.com/events/michigan-pga-womens-open-pro-am or call (888) 968-7686 ext. 4000.

Michigan PGA Women’s Open Championship
Thompsonville – Crystal Mountain
June 26-28, 2017

Crystal Mountain is pleased to once again welcome some of the top players in women’s golf from throughout Michigan and around the country to the Mountain Ridge course for the Michigan PGA Women’s Open. For more information see www.crystalmountain.com/events/michigan-pga-womens-open-tournament or call (888) 968-7686 ext. 4000.

JULY

Old-Fashioned Fourth of July
Thompsonville – Crystal Mountain
Frankfort & Beulah

July 1 – July 4, 2017

Fourth of July celebrations are taking place all over Benzie County – in Frankfort, Beulah and beautiful Crystal Mountain in Thompsonville. Activities in many locations include fireworks, parades, a Firecracker 5K Footrace and other fun-filled activities. For more information see www.visitbenzie.com or call (800) 882-5801.

Fire Cracker Race
Beulah

July 4, 2017

Fourth of July celebrations include fireworks, a parade, a Firecracker 5K Footrace and other fun- filled activities. Call (800) 882-5801 for more information.

Beulah Art Fair
Beulah
July 8, 2017

Artisans from the region gather in the quaint Northern Michigan village of Beulah. Call (800) 882-5801 for more information.

Port City Run
Frankfort
July 15, 2017

The Port City Running Events include a 5K Run and 5K Walk as well as a 1 Mile Fun Run. The races start at 8AM. The entire course is flat and fast along the Betsie Bay on the Betsie Valley Trail. For more information see www.Frankfort-elberta.com or call (231) 352-7251.

Up North Stand Up Paddleboard Classic
Beulah on Crystal Lake & Frankfort on Lake Michigan
July 15, 2017

These two events, the Crystal Lake South Challenge and Lake Michigan Down Wind Duel, are both challenging and fun! The Crystal Lake Stand Up Classic will consist of an elite 6 mile – 2 laps, 3 mile – 1 lap and a kid’s 1.5-mile challenge held on one of the most pristine lakes in Michigan. This race will have will have an open water start and finish. The Lake Michigan 4.6 Downwind Duel paddle will start at Pt. Betsie Lighthouse beach and finish on Frankfort Beach. This race will have a beach start and finish. All races are held under WPA rules. All racers must have a leash and a personal floatation device on board. Each race will be limited to 100 racers. To pre-register and to learn more about the courses and rules see www.upnorthsup.com or call (231) 882-2527.

AUGUST

Frankfort Art Fair

Frankfort

August 18-19, 2017

This fine arts juried fair includes the works of over 175 artists. For more information see www.Frankfort-elberta.com or call (231) 352-7251.

Honor Coho Salmon Festival

Honor

August 25-27, 2017

The 50th annual Coho Festival, one of the most unique Michigan fishing events is a three-day event centralized in Honor, Michigan. The festival, which began in 1967, celebrates the ‘salmon run’ up the Benzie County Rivers. Benzie County’s Platte River was the first river for salmon planting in Michigan. Festivities include entertainment, fireworks, car show, parade, softball tournaments, games, and more. For more information see www.visitbenzie.com or Call (800) 882- 5801 for more information.

Collector Car Show
Frankfort

August 18, 2017

This Collector Car Show in Frankfort brings out the best in vintage automobiles. For more information see www.Frankfort-elberta.com or call (231) 352-7251.

Benzie Fishing Frenzy
Frankfort

August 26-28, 2017

With over $25,000 in cash and prizes, this fishing contest at Mineral Springs Park is open to anyone. There are three Divisions with a Ladies Classic on Friday and Big Fish Only, Amateur Division, and Pro Division on Saturday. For more information see www.Frankfort-elberta.com or call (231) 352-7251.

SEPTEMBER

Taste of Benzie
Frankfort 
Mineral Springs Park

September 9, 2017

Come with an appetite and bring the entire family for this lively and delicious afternoon festival. Many of Benzie County restaurants, cafes and caterers will feature their house specialties for $1 – $3 per sample. Beer and wine tastes will be $2 for a sample and $5 for full pours. Live music and many children’s activities are all a part of the fun. For more information see www.FrankfortElberta.com or call (231) 352-7251.

OCTOBER

Beulah / Benzonia Fall Festival
October 7, 2017

Throughout the day, enjoy the experience of a small town festival within a beautiful setting. Activities in Beulah and Beulah Village Park include a cookie bake sale, pumpkin decorating, carvings by Pat Harrison, “Lord of the Gourd”, sidewalk art contest, a fall soup contest, hula hoop contest, horse drawn wagon rides, and a classic vehicle & motorcycle “Park & Shine” show. Children will also be entertained with children’s stories and activities, face painting, a climbing wall and a bounce house. Adults can enjoy complimentary food tasting & wine sampling, plus antiques galore, at Myers Granary Antique Market. There will also be an historical walking tour in Benzonia with narrator and guide, as well as, free admission to the Benzie Area Historical Museum in Benzonia. Times for activities are featured online at www.visitbenzie.com/events/22/506/

Chairlift Rides with Live Entertainment
Crystal Mountain (weather permitting)
Every Saturday in October (10/7, 10/14, 10/21, 10/28) – Check for times per date.

Enjoy panoramic views of three counties and top-of-the-mountain attractions including live musical entertainment. Ride the Crystal Clipper Quad Chairlift to the top of the mountain to enjoy the music. Chairlift rides are $7 per person. Children 8 & under are free with a paying adult. Guests staying at Crystal Mountain can ride for free.

For more information see www.crystalmountain.com/about/events or call the Park at Water’s Edge at 888.968.7686 ext. 7000.