Category Archives: Special Events

Wreath laying, lighted parade, Santa top Farmington Holly Days

Farmington residents paid tribute to fallen war heroes, lit up Grand River, and welcomed Santa Claus during Saturday’s Holly Days event.

American Legion Post #346 hosted a wreath-laying ceremony at the War Memorial in Farmington’s Memorial Park, to honor those who lost their lives in battle, as well those on active duty during the holiday season:

The Farmington Farmers and Artisans Market offered a one-day Gifts & Greens Market at the Walter E. Sundquist Farmington Pavilion, where shoppers found wreaths and other greens, along with unique gift items:

Gifts and Greens

Santa made several appearances, in the afternoon at Farmington Garage, where Focal Point Studios offered families free photos with him:

Santa Claus
Eight-year-old Sarita Govindaraj shared her Christmas wishes with Santa December 3, at Farmington Garage. Her birthday also falls on Christmas Day.

The Jolly Old Elf also capped off the Light Up the Grand parade, which moved from Grand River and Warner Street to the Governor Warner Mansion:

LightUpTheGrand
Marcia Rodeheffer of the Greater Farmington Area Chamber directed Saturday’s Light Up the Grand parade route.
LightUpTheGrand
Boy Scouts from Troop 45 led Saturday’s Light Up the Grand parade.
LightUpTheGrand
Miss Farmington 2016 Grace Murphy
LightUpTheGrand
The Riley Park Ice Rink float, featuring a skating Snoopy, was the winning entry in this year’s Light Up the Grand parade.
LightUpTheGrand
Sunflour Bakehaus put their Light Up the Grand entry on wheels.
LightUpTheGrand
Lights covered much of this City of Farmington Department of Public Works truck during Saturday’s Light Up the Grand parade.

 

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Farmington Winter Market celebrates the holiday season

The Farmington Winter Artisans Market will feature plenty of holiday music and spirit Saturday, in its new home at the Masonic Hall, 23715 Farmington Rd. in downtown Farmington.

Open 10 a.m.-3 p.m., the weekly market will feature local vendors with holiday gifts and ideas. This week, the market features Farmington-based Bunchy’s Chicken and Pizza.

To learn more, follow the market on Facebook.

Holly Days: Gifts and Greens Market, Santa, movies and more

Santa arrives in downtown Farmington December 3, during the annual Holly Days celebration hosted by the Greater Farmington Area Chamber of Commerce. Here’s what you’ll find during this holiday season kick-off:

Santa Claus
Santa heard Christmas wishes last year from Levi Nelson, 6, of Farmington Hills.
Gifts & Greens Market

The day begins with a special holiday farmers market, open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Walter E. Sundquist Farmington Pavilion. Michigan farmers will offer fresh made wreaths, greens, roping, holiday centerpieces and firewood bundles, and local artisans will offer Michigan-made products. A donation to Farmington/Farmington Hills Neighborhood House will get you a free cup of fresh house-made chili from Page’s Food & Spirits.

Free movies

Support the Farmington Area Goodfellows’ drive to ensure no child or senior in our community goes without a Christmas when you attend a free moving showing at the Farmington Civic Theater. “Miracle on 34th Street” shows at 10 a.m. and noon, and “Shrek the Halls” plays hourly starting at 10:15 a.m. and ending with the last showing at 1:15 p.m. Bring an unwrapped toy, pantry goods or monetary donation; in addition, half of all concession stand sales will benefit the local charity.

Santa and Mrs. Santa visits

Santa will listen to children’s wishes from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m., by the fireplace at the Farmington Garage on Grand River just east of Grove St. Focal Point Photography Studios will offer free professional photos to take home.

Also during that time, find “Storytime with Mrs. Claus” at the Farmington Community Library Farmington branch, 23500 Liberty St., and an “Elf Workshop” for kids, at the Greater Farmington Chamber of Commerce, 33425 Grand River. (Be on the lookout for live reindeer!)

Santa at Governor Warner Mansion
Santa stops at the Governor Warner Mansion during Holly Days 2015.
Light Up the Grand

At 6 p.m., a lighted parade will step off from Warner Street and Grand River, featuring music, dancing and floats. Free hot chocolate will be served by Pathways Christian Counseling of Farmington Hills at the Masonic Temple, starting at 5:30 p.m. Follow the parade to the Governor Warner Mansion for the annual tree lighting ceremony with Santa. Free tours of the mansion will be yours with a donation to the Salvation Army bell ringers.

Halloween in Farmington and Farmington Hills

Farmington Public Safety Halloween
Trick-or-treaters Chase, 7, and Caden, 3, are pictured in front of Fresh Thyme Farmer’s Market in downtown Farmington. The store donated the snacks that officers will hand out Halloween night. (contributed photo)

Halloween isn’t just a one-day event in Farmington and Farmington Hills. Here’s what you should know about the holiday and related events:

Haunted Market

Kids can trick-or-treat during the weekly farmers market held October 29 in downtown Farmington’s Walter E. Sundquist Farmington Pavilion and Riley Park. Activities starting at 9:30 a.m. will include a bounce house and free pumpkin decorating hosted by the Greater Farmington Energy Prize. From 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., the ventriloquist team of Boytoe and Lazareth will entertain with puppet shows and free balloon art. Trick-or-treating all day. Learn more at farmingtonfarmersmarket.com.

Halloween Fun Fest

This annual downtown Farmington event, held October 29, includes an 11 a.m. story time at the Farmington Community Library Farmington branch, a free 12 p.m. showing of “Toy Story” at the Farmington Civic Theater, Halloween Fun House at Earned Not Give Crossfit from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., and trick-or-treating at local businesses from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Learn more at downtownfarmington.org.

Trunk or Treat events

First Presbyterian Church of Farmington, 26165 Farmington Road in Farmington Hills: October 30, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Enjoy a spook-tacular coffee hour of cider and donuts, mingle with friends, and pick up treats at open car trunks. Costumes welcome.

Faith Covenant Church, 35415 W. 14 Mile Rd., in Farmington Hills: October 30, 6 p.m.-9 p.m. Games, food, a trunk decorating contest, hot cider, tractor rides. Trunk-or-treating from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., a movie showing follows.

Farmington Community Band Spooktacular concert

The October 30, 3 p.m., concert theme is “Area 51”, and the program features several musical selections with an “outer space” theme. This free concert event gives kids an opportunity to show off their Halloween fashions in a costume parade on stage with the band. Everyone is encouraged to attend wearing their favorite outer space costume. Farmington Public Schools band students will appear on stage as special emcees, telling jokes and introducing musical selections. For information, visit fcbmusic.org.

On Halloween night, start out any time you’re ready.

Neither city has established specific hours for trick-or-treating. Generally speaking, folks who welcome costumed characters leave an outside light on.

Look for Farmington Public Safety officers delivering Halloween night treats.

Two members of the Farmington Public Safety Department will be out starting at 6 p.m. Halloween night to hand trick-or-treaters glow necklaces and bags of snacks. The 22-year-old program is designed to give children a positive first impression of police officers. The department also plans extra patrols in neighborhoods that night.

Trick or treat with the Farmington Hills Police Department

The Farmington Hills Police Department will give away Halloween candy on October 31, 6 p.m.-9 p.m. at the front desk. In addition, uniformed officers will distribute candy from their marked vehicles, while on subdivision patrols.

Parents and trick-or-treaters are reminded to stay safe this Halloween. The Police Department recommends the following tips:

  • Stay in a group and make sure a parent is nearby.
  • Look both ways when crossing the street.
  • Wear reflective tape for visibility on costumes.
  • Carry flash lights.
  • Wait until children are home to sort out all candy and remove any treats that are unwrapped or appear suspicious.

Celebrate Fall in Farmington at Harvest Moon

The 11th annual Harvest Moon Celebration will bring craft beers and fine wines, live music, and gourmet food to downtown Farmington September 15-16, from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. both nights.

Harvest Moon

The weekend event, hosted by the Downtown Development Authority (DDA), kicks off Thursday with a beer and wine tasting, paired with harvest fare from Edward’s Catering. Kate Hinote & the Disasters will provide live music. Friday’s Harvest Moon Dance will feature Bugs Beddow & the Good Stuff, along with local fare from downtown Farmington restaurants.

“Friday night’s dance of fellowship and fun mark a time of thankfulness for a wonderful harvest and the end of the summer work and a Taste of Farmington celebrating local DDA restaurants” said DDA board member Agnes Skrzycki.

Tickets for the Harvest Moon Celebration, which is open only to adults 21 and older, can be purchased at the door for $8 or in advance for $6 at John Cowley & Sons, The Vines, Merle Norman Cosmetics and the Meadows Fine Wine & Liquor, or at the Saturday Farmers Market.

The weekend concludes with the largest Farmington Farmers and Artisans Market of the season. The Harvest Market will be held at the Village Commons shopping center on Grand River, just east of the Market’s traditional home at the Walter E. Sundquist Farmington Pavilion, with fun events geared toward the younger population. The Farmington Jaycees will host a pancake breakfast from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in Riley Park.

Learn more at downtownfarmington.org.

Harvest Moon volunteers gear up at August 16 pep rally

Harvest MoonDowntown Farmington’s signature fall event is just around the corner, and the Downtown Development Authority is hosting a pep rally August 16 for anyone interested in helping out.

Held September 15 and 16, the award-winning Harvest Moon Celebration includes a Thursday beer and wine tasting event with music by Kate Hinote & the Disasters, and Harvest Moon dance on Friday, featuring the music of Bugs Beddow & the Good Stuff. Both events take place at the Walter E. Sundquist Farmington Pavilion and Riley Park.

Volunteers may sign up for various shifts and duties during the rally, held at the Pavilion from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Hot dogs and soft drinks will be served.

“Simply put, Harvest Moon would not be possible without the engagement of so many devoted volunteers,” said Annette Knowles, Assistant to the City Manager and DDA Executive Director.

RSVP for the rally by writing to volunteer@downtownfarmington.org or by calling 248-473-7276. There’s more information about Harvest Moon at downtownfarmington.org.

 

Tickets for the Harvest Moon Celebration will be on sale starting August 13 and can be purchased any time at John Cowley & Sons, The Vines, Merle Norman Cosmetics or the Meadows Fine Wine & Liquor, and on Saturdays, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., at the Farmington Farmers & Artisans Market.

Greater Farmington Founders Festival Fireworks Finale

The Greater Farmington Founders Festival continues today with a pancake breakfast hosted by the Harrison High School Football Boosters, entertainment on the Meijer Kids  Zone stage, Elks Pig Roast and Challenge Butter Old Fashioned Corn Roast, and Dream Raffle drawing. Learn more at foundersfestival.com.

In case you missed it, here’s the finale from Saturday’s fireworks display, sponsored by Brightside Dental:

Streets close today for Founders Festival Run, Grand Parade

The Greater Farmington Founders Festival Grand Parade, with the theme “Disco Fever: I Love the Night Life,” steps off at 10 a.m. today and moves west on Grand River through downtown Farmington.

Pre-parade activities include a local business mascot race starting at 9:20 a.m. on Grand River. In addition, Founders Festival runners will come through Grand River on their way to the finish line in Shiawassee Park.

Grand River will be closed to traffic from 8:45 a.m. to 12 p.m. for the run and the parade.

Entertainment begins on the Meijer Kids Zone stage in Riley Park after the parade, as does a performance by the Peace Jubilee Civil War Band on the lawn at Farmington City Hall on Grand River, near the History Booth.

For a full list of Saturday activities, visit foundersfestival.com.

Earth Angels marks 30 years with Founders Festival appearance

In 1986, Lisa Campos-Dewitt began teaching neighborhood kids to dance in her backyard, a hobby that would become a life-long vocation.

Earth Angels

Earth Angels will mark its 30th year with a July 16 performance on the Meijer Kids Zone stage at noon, immediately after the Greater Farmington Founders Festival Grand Parade. The 26 members, boys and girls ranging in age from 8 to 18, will perform dance routines to “Oldies” from the 1950s and 1960s, with authentic costumes from the era, all choreographed by Campos-Dewitt. The show is fast moving, comedic at times and involves a lot of audience participation, enjoyed by young and old.

Campos-Dewitt’s goal for three decades has been to teach kids how to give back with just a song and a dance, and her passion and dedication has drawn not only kids, but their parents, into the Earth Angels family. Bonnie Murphy got involved in late 1990’s when her then 9-year-old daughter, Cari, joined. She stayed on with the group long after her daughter left, and helps wherever she can.

“It is a magical combination of parent volunteers, Lisa’s donation of time and talent, very dedicated boys and girls and a lot of sweat equity that keeps the group going,” Murphy said. “We are self-funded, so all of the revenue that the group brings in goes towards replenishing worn-out costumes, props and sound equipment. The group members are taken on a trip after the summer performing season in appreciation for their hard work.”

“Lisa’s method is tried and true,” said Steve Palizzi, father of members Nick and Sophia. “The older members mentor the younger ones and help them learn the routines. There is a bond that is created in this process and they all look after each other as a result.

“People like Lisa are few and far between,” Murphy added. “She has devoted the last thirty years of her life for the benefit of others.”

The Earth Angels’ 30th anniversary also marks the introduction of the Earth Angel Juniors, comprised of kids who are younger than the group’s regular members. Campos-Dewitt’s son, Marco, and daughter, Sofi, have joined, as has Murphy’s granddaughter, Lana.

“The group has truly come full circle now,” Campos-Dewitt said, “and hopefully the meaning and the message will carry on for generations to come.”

The Meijer Kids Zone stage is located in Riley Park at Grand River and Grove Street in downtown Farmington. For more information about the group, visit theearthangels.org.