Coast Boutique Natural Wonders History


This is the signature festival for the Manistee Area Chamber of Commerce.  Hosted every year over the 4th of July/Independence Day Holiday, the Manistee National Forest Festival is a Manistee County tradition stretching back over 80 years. 

Drawing thousands of tourists to the area along with many residents returning with ties to the community, the festival embodies the idea of "Community" that so many love about this area.  Each year, the Forest Festival highlights events such as the Manistee World of Arts & Crafts, Independence Day Parade, Fireworks over Lake Michigan, Festival Marketplace, carnival and much more!

For Application Forms & Contracts: Visit Here

Presenting & Fireworks Sponsor: Little River Casino Resort - website

Festival Supporters: 
Ludington Beverage Company - website
Martin Marietta Magnesia Specialties - website
Alliance Beverage - website
Top Line Electric - website

Event Sponsors:
Scottville Clown Band Sponsor – Manistee Ford
Independence Day Parade Presenting Sponsor – Manistee World of Arts & Crafts & Snyder's Shoes
Sandcastle Contest - Sports Ink & Lucky Lizard Awards & Gifts
High School Band - Manistee World of Arts & Crafts & Ferrelgas
Whispering Pines Animal Kingdom – Morton Salt & Best Drug Rehabilitation Center & Meijer
Rubber Duck Race – Best Drug Rehab & Manistee County Deputy Sheriff's Association
Kids Day – West Shore Medical Center & Watson's Manistee Chrysler & Meijer & Filer Credit Union
Tittabawasee Valley Fife & Drum Corp. – Charles A. Boyer
Rockin' With the 80's Concert - Custom Sheet Metal & Heating & Hybza Chiropractic & Water's Edge Dentistry
Entertainment Area - Ramsdell Inn/TJ's Pub  & Up North Live 7&4 / 29&8
Mock Rock - Patrick Swidorski Trucking, LLC
Golf Outing - Manistee Rotary Club
Pancake Breakfast - MAPS Community Track Committee



2017 Update Coming Soon.....

June 30th
Business after Hours at the Beach - 5:30pm - 7:30pm - Admission $10
Kicking off the festival with this fun event. Enjoy great food, music by Awesome Distraction, and beach games at the Festival Entertainment Area. Prizes & Cash bar available.

July 3rd
CPR Marathon Hosted by the Manistee Fire Department - 10:00am - 6:00pm - Free Event
Our goal is to train as many people as possible to administer "Hands Only CPR" with this short 10-15 minute training. "Hands Only CPR" is not a certification from the AHA. It emphazises calling 911 for an adult or child victim of cardiac arrest and starting compressions immediately. Manistee Fire Hall, 281 First Street.

July 4th
That's Entertainment: A History of Local Entertainment 10:00am - 5:00pm - $1 Students / $3 Adults / $6 Couples / $8 Family
Manistee County Historical Museum

June 30th
Douglas Valley GPS Hike & Poker Run - 12Noon - 4:00pm - $5 per person
Its an electronic treasure hunt and 5 card poker rolled into one! Use your GPS unit or smart phone to find several caches throughout Douglas Valley Winery, 5375 Douglas Valley Drive. At each location pick up a playing card; collect 5 cards to make a hand. Turn in your hand by 4pm. Prizes are awarded for 1st, 2nd & 3rd.

July 1st
Chalk Art - 4:00pm - (Registration begins at 3:30pm) - Free Event
River Street and Water Street in the fountain triangle (across from Municipal Marina)

July 1st, 2nd & 3rd
"Free to Be, You and Me" - Musical - July 1st & 2nd - 7:30pm - July 3rd - 2:00pm Admission $16-$20
Ramsdell Theatre and Cultural Arts Center, 101 Maple Street
Based on the classic children's book conceived and written by Marlo Thomas and Friends. Life-enhancing themes are imaginatively blended with music and humor to expand children's lives, enabling them to invent their own futures without limitations. Order tickets: 800.836.0717 or

July 1st
Forest Festival Golf Outing - 8:30am
Please contact Manistee National Golf & Resort for reservations, 231.723.8874. Manistee National Golf & Resort, 4797 US 31.

July 1st
Forest Festival Book Sale - 9:00am - 5:00pm
The friends of the Manistee County Library will hold a giant sale of used books. This event takes place indoors and outdoors at the Book House behind the library, 95 Maple Street.

July 1st
Wine in the Vines Tour - 10:30am, 12:30pm, 2:30pm, 4:30pm - $20 per person 21 and Over (weather permitting)
An educational tour and tasting throughout the vineyard and farm. Tour is approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes and is outside. Includes wine and cider tastings, tour and light snacks. Douglas Valley Winery, 5375 Douglas Valley Drive.

July 1st
Manistee Lions Club Fish Boil - 4:30pm - 7:00pm $12 per meal
Lions Pavilion, First Street Beach.

July 2nd - 3rd
Manistee World of Arts & Crafts 44th Annual Art Fair - 9:00am - 5:00pm
Juried arts and crafts show in a beautiful tree lined park. Red Szymarek Park on Fifth Avenue.

July 1st
Forest Bus Tour - 10:00am - 1:00pm - Free Event
Take a scenic ride through the Manistee National Forest, learn about forest practices and see recreational sites throughout the County.  Meet at Veterans Memorial parking lot across from Manistee County Transportation, 180 Memorial Drive. Reservations required as seats are limited, contact the USDA Forest Service, 231.723.2211, Participants are encouraged to bring lunch and water.

July 1st
Beach Buddies Kids Parade & Activities - 11:00am - 2:00pm - Free Event
Calling all kiddos, dress up as your favorite beach buddy character and meet at First Street North Softball Field. Free lunch provided by Manistee Area Public Schools Satellite Program until noon. West Shore Bank will be onsite with their ice cream cart for the kids, mingle with special guest mascots, gifts from USDA Forest Service, face painting, Balloon Man and a duck pond. At 1pm, the Forest Festival Prince & Princess will be crowned and will lead the parade immediately following. Prizes will be awarded for best costumes, open to all children and fun for all! Rain location: Manistee Area Public Schools Commons, 425 12th Street

July 1st
Prince & Princess Pageant Crowning Ceremony - 1:00pm - Free Event
First Street North Softball Field. The Forest Festival Prince and Princess will be crowned for all to see the new royalty will then lead the parade immediately following.

July 1st
Mock Rock-Back to the 80's - 7:00pm - 9:00pm 
A new addition to the Forest Festival this year, this event will feature music and costumes from the 80's, DJ Cole Black and emcee from 7&4 and 29&8. Bring down a chair to the Forest Festival Entertainment Area and watch as twenty groups go head for the cash prize and trophy. Don't forget to dig up your 80's outfit and rock it out at this event.

July 2nd
Journey Tribute Concert - Gates open at 7:00pm - Admission $15 at the gate, Advanced Purchase $13 each or 2 for $25
Enjoy a tribute to Journey's music featuring The Journey Tribute Band, along with local favorites The Lou Thunder. The concert is presented by the Salt City Rock and Blues Committee and will be held in the open air at the Festival Entertainment Area. Proceeds from the event will benefit Homeward Bound Animal Shelter. Tickets can be purchased at Sports Ink Screen Printing, Manistee Area Chamber of Commerce, Manistee Inn & Marina, Happy Hippie. The Ramsdell Inn/TJ's Pub, Jackpine Business Centers, Port City Organics, LLC and Visible Changes. Cash Bar will be available. Don't forget to dig up your favorite 80's outfit and rock it out at this event!

July 2nd
Firecracker 5k Run/Walk & 1k Fun Run - 8:00am - 2:00pm
Manistee Middle/High School, 525 12th Street Registration Fee

July 4th
Flag Raising Ceremony - 9:45am
Corner of Division Street & River Street Veterans will raise the flag as the National Anthem is sung. All Veterans and active duty are invited. Thank you for your service!

July 4th
Independence Day Parade - 10:00am
This fantastic one of a kind parade highlights our Veterans, Manistee County's rich history, the Manistee National Forest and all the creative entries! Travels west on River Street from Division Street to First Street by the Armory parking lot.

July 2nd & 3rd
Wine Tasting & Live Music - 1:30pm - 4:30pm - Free Event
Enjoy live music, wine tasting and wine by the glass. On Friday Don Rabinette on Guitar and Saturday, Awesome Distraction - Folk/Bluegrass/Easy Listening. Shop the Bodega to find everything you need for a picnic, with over 100 Made in Michigan food products! Douglas Valley Winery, 5375 Douglas Valley Drive.

July 2nd
Port City Pet Pageant - 1:30pm - 4:00pm (Registration 1pm) - Free Event
Your pet does have what it takes to be a champion! Come see your pets strut their stuff for a chance to win a trophy. Is your pet the cutest? The best dressed? The smallest? The oldest? The most patriotic? Do you and your pet look like twins? Enter to find out! Registration is on site and is free. For more information call Parkdale Animal Hospital 231.723.8998. See you There!

July 1st
Customs-N-Classics Car Club Cruise Night - 4:00pm - 8:00pm - Free Event
Meet at VFW Hall located on 28th Street. Awards will be given by VFW #4499. Music by Mr. D's and food will be available.

July 1st
Rocking with the 80's Concert - 9:00pm - 12:00am- Admission $5, 21 & Over
This 80's themed concert will feature music by the bands Wild Card and Clear Heels. The event will take place at the Forest Festival Entertainment Area. Ages 21 and over only. Cash bar, food and non-alcoholic beverages available. Don't forget to dig up your favorite 80's outfit and rock it out at this event.

July 3rd
Fireworks Over Lake Michigan - 10:30pm
Spectacular display, best viewing from First Street Beach, Fifth Avenue Beach or from the Forest Festival Entertainment Area. 

July 2nd & 3rd
21st Annual Jiingtamok (Pow Wow) - 11:00am - Free Event
"Little River Band of Ottawa Indians Jiingtamok is a contest Jiingtamok held at the Gathering Grounds (across from the Casino behind the Trading Post). Grand entries at 1 pm and 7 pm on Saturday and 1 pm on Sunday. There will be vendors offering native foods and native crafted items. Everyone is welcome, fun for the entire family as you share in the colors, dances, and songs."

July 3rd
Pancake Breakfast - 7:00am - 1:00pm - Advance Tickets: Adults $7, 5-12 years $5, Children under 5 Free.
Tickets at the door: Adults $7, children under 5 Free. Pancake Breakfast will be at the Manistee Middle/High School, 525 12th Street.  A Manistee and Forest Festival tradition for over 50 years.  Advance tickets available from MHS Office, Manistee Community Track Committee members and the Manistee Area Chamber of Commerce. Proceeds from this event benefit the Community Track.

July 2nd
Customs-N-Classics Car Club 24th Annual Car Show - 8:00am - 2:00pm - Free Event
Douglas Park, First Street Beach

July 3rd
Sandcastle Contest - 9:00am - 3:00pm - Free Event
Gather your family and friends and build your masterpiece! This family fun event will take place at the beach at Douglas Park, First Street Beach. Judging will take place at 3pm; 1st place will receive a trophy and their picture on the Manistee National Forest Festival Facebook Page.

July 4th
Duck Race - 1:00pm
Presented by the Chamber Ambassadors, the Manistee County Child Advocacy Center and the mascot Ducky. 100's of ducks will be released into the river from the Maple Street Bridge  they race to the finish line by the Elk's Lodge #250 and are scooped up by the Marine Patrol. Raffle tickets are $5 each or 5 for $20. 1st Prize $500, 2nd Prize $100, 3rd Prize $50  last place $25. Tickets are available at: Manistee Area Chamber of Commerce, Manistee County Visitors Bureau and Knizacky Insurance.

July 3rd
Scottville Clown Band - 4:00pm - 6:00pm - Free Event
A festival tradition! Enjoy a fun concert in the open air, so bring your beach chairs, blankets and be ready to dance at the Festival Entertainment Area!

Festival Market Place - June 30th, July 1st, 2nd & 3rd, 10:00am - Dusk; July 4th 10:00am - 5:00pm
A festival favorite, the marketplace offers great bargains, unique merchandise and of course delicious festival food!

TJ Schmidt Carnival - June 30th, 2:00pm - Dusk; July 1, 2 & 3 12:00pm - Dusk ; July 4th 12:00pm - 5:00pm
A family owned and operated traveling carnival serving the state of Michigan. Traveling Theme Park with thrilling rides, tasty carnival fare and games of skill combine with superior customer amenities!

Whispering Pines Animal Kingdom - July 1-3 10:00am - Dusk, Free Event
A mobile exhibit that has a variety of animals from around the world from farm animals to exotic animals - it's a zoo on wheels that's fun for everyone!