Although the Tri-City area’s summer events calendar is packed pretty full, it’s pretty obvious that the festivities don’t come to a halt when the calendar turns to September. In fact, this month is growing to become one of the area’s busiest seasons for community gatherings.

Some of the heartiest among us—outdoor enthusiasts—converged on Imlay City earlier this month for the 36th Annual Woods-N-Water News Outdoor Weekend. The show serves as a great reminder that we live in a diverse and beautiful state that has so much to offer.

This past weekend, three events were on the docket—classic car enthusiasts and community groups gathered in Almont for the Heritage Festival; the Great Lakes Emergency Preparedness Expo made its debut at the Eastern Michigan State Fairgrounds and Art in the Rough returned to downtown Imlay City.

In Almont, the Heritage Festival’s schedule was filled with a nice mix of music, refreshments and fun on four wheels and all centered around the village’s beautiful downtown and community park.

It was great to see attendees interacting with local emergency responders—and those from further afield—at the Emergency Preparedness Expo. Most who had the chance to see response vehicles and chat with the men and women who operate them likely came away with a renewed sense of trust in these services and sense of security in knowing that highly trained and dedicated individuals are ready to come to their aid should they ever need it.

Art in the Rough offers a nice blend of fine and performing arts and good eats. It was especially encouraging to see many kids and teens and their families in attendance on Saturday. Events like Art in the Rough can be great vehicles for letting the next generation of creators and artisans interact with those already immersed in the arts either as a hobby or profession. It’s also stirring to be reminded of the local talent that surrounds us.

Next weekend, Scholz Autofest is due to return to Capac after a few years’ absence, giving the village and surrounding area a chance to reconnect with old acquaintances in the 2022 calendar year.

Before the darker days and longer nights of winter descend, it’s great to have so many opportunities to get out and about, connect with our friends and neighbors and be reminded of how much more alike than different we are.