Lifestyle & Parenting

All for Ann Arbor

August 13, 2015

ann arborFly into Detroit and continue on to lovely Ann Arbor, Michigan, for a unique blend of Midwestern U.S. charm, including a lively theater scene, stellar art galleries, great boutique shopping, excellent restaurants and many many (many!) microbreweries.

stay: With free Wi-Fi, a fitness room and pool, a lobby bar that serves local craft beer and large, luxe rooms, the Courtyard Ann Arbor is a solid choice (with plenty of things-to-do-on-site-between-sightseeing options) for those who aren’t keen on a bed-and-breakfast experience. Courtyard Ann Arbor,  3205 Boardwalk, Ann Arbor, 734-995-5900,

ann arborsee: Dance, theatrical and musical performances are frequently on at the University of Michigan, with the on-campus Museum of Art boasting a collection of sculptures that includes Maya Lin’s famous Wave. Other excellent arts venues to consider: the Performance Network Theater and Jeff Daniels’ Purple Rose Theatre, plus museums like the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Kelsey Museum of Archaeology. University of Michigan Museum of Art, 525 S State St., Ann Arbor, 734-764-0395,

ann arborshop: While you walk the streets of Ann Arbor, look for little "fairy doors" sprinkled around town as installation art. There are several, for instance, in Kerrytown, along with fresh oysters at Monahan’s Seafood Market, taste-worthy wines at Everyday Wines and fashion at V2V. Nearby, the city’s farmers’ market is full of area produce and artisan treasures—or head downtown to the recently opened Shinola for locally made hand-assembled watches, bicycles and leather goods from Detroit. Shinola, 301 S Main St., Ann Arbor, Michigan, 734-389-7013,

ann arboreat: With more than 250 restaurants to choose from, no wonder Midwest Living mag placed this city among the "Best Midwest Food Towns." Try Zingerman’s, a family of food companies in the Ann Arbor area including a deli, roadhouse, creamery, farm, bakehouse and candy maker, or check out the Slurping Turtle for Hamachi fish tacos, duck-fat fried chicken and sake bombs. Last but not least, at Mani Osteria & Bar, be sure to order the chicken liver mousse and meatballs. Mani Osteria & Bar, 341 E Liberty St., 734-769-6700,

ann arbordrink: Start sipping at one of two Arbor Brewing Company locations, where stellar ale and a great menu are served. Jolly Pumpkin is a must for lunchtime brews and chews, while nearby Chelsea boasts both the aptly named Chelsea Alehouse Brewery and, for those who prefer vodka, the Ugly Dog Distillery (where you can actually meet Ruger, the distillery’s namesake who’s more cute than uncouth). Grizzly Peak, Original Gravity and Wolverine State Brewing, which specializes in lager, are also musts for craft-beer lovers. Local wines are featured at VinBar on West Liberty, and tea lovers ought to visit TeaHaus for a different sort of brew—after all, you can’t live on alcohol alone … or can you? —Cassandra Anderton


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