Hot Off The Press: Grand Traverse Scene Explores Destination Bay Harbor

Brian Chermside and his wife regularly traveled from the Saginaw area to northern Michigan for winter sports. Then they stayed put. Chermside said they fell in love with the area and decided to buy a condo at the Village at Bay Harbor, a resort community in Petoskey, about 20 years ago.“We started to explore our retirement destination and found Bay Harbor to be a perfect match,” he said. “The views are awesome.”

The village at Bay Harbor in Petoskey includes a few retail businesses, shops and restaurants that are open to visitors throughout the year.

Chermside said the nearby bike trail — which connects Bay Harbor to Charlevoix— helps blend nature with the town setting. Visitors can stay at one of the two hotels and walk to the shops and restaurants downtown. Businesses include a hair salon, photography studio, women’s clothing stores and more.“It’s a great way to meet people and get engaged,” he said. “It’s a really nice lifestyle. It’s relaxed and it’s energizing.”

Recurring summer activities include a concert series, car and boat shows and the 18th Bay Harbor Arts Festival, which occurs from July 28-29.

Abbey Neerken, a festival coordinator, said they usually host 50-60 artists and are capping participation at 75 this year. The public can view international and national artwork along the village’s main street and near the marina during the two-day festival.Additionally, people can search for stamps to fill an “art passport.” Neerken said a different artist each day will have stamps, so people should visit as many booths as possible to find them.

The Bay Harbor Golf Club offers golfers a view of Lake Michigan and the residential neighborhoods at Bay Harbor in Petoskey.

The Bay Harbor Art Festival will feature live music both days and a magician on Saturday. One of the artists from last year will be performing, Neerken said.The public will later have access to the Great Lakes Center for the Arts, which is currently under construction. The facility is set to host its first performances in the summer of 2018, with the grand opening in July.

“It’s designed to bring all kinds of diversified entertainment into northern Michigan.” Chermside said.  “We’re all really excited because it’s right here in our backyard.”

Published by Stephanie Brzezinski. Check out Grand Traverse Scene Summer 2017 Part 2

Copyright 2017 GT Scene, Edition 7/26/2017