Imlay City is the place for family
fun this Friday and Saturday


IMLAY CITY — Two days of family fun, mouthwatering food and lively entertainment are on tap with the 2nd Annual Imlay City Summer Fest this Friday and Saturday, August 11-12. Hosted by the Imlay City Area Chamber of Commerce, this year’s Western-themed Summer Fest offers a variety of activities and events for people of all ages.

“Put on those cowboy hats and boots and enjoy favorites from the past to bring back some of your favorite memories while making new memories with some new and exciting events,” says Chamber Director Chris Bishop.

The Summer Fest Parade winds through downtown Imlay City at last year’s event. This year’s parade takes place at 4 p.m. on Saturday, August 12.

The festival kicks off at noon at the Main Stage located at the Farmers Market area on Third and Main Streets. From there, guests can enjoy burgers, hot dogs, sweet treats and more from a wide variety of popular food trucks located nearby. As always, kids can take part in old fashioned games, play on the inflatables, and skate at the Skate Park at the pool parking lot from noon to 9 p.m. The pool’s Splash Pad will be open from 1-5 p.m. All children’s activities are free of charge.

Friday’s eating contests include pickle eating at 12:45 p.m.; pie eating at 2 p.m. and slider eating at 5 p.m. All contests take place at the Lamb-Steele Park.

If you’re looking for historic displays, you’ll find them at the Imlay City Historical Museum, which will be open both days. Due to unforeseen circumstances, there will be no pie, ice cream, water or other food items for sale.

The Beverage Tent opens at 4 p.m. on Friday, and remains open until 1 a.m. Saturday. New this year and in keeping with the western theme, a variety of moonshine beverages will also be available. All beverages are just $3.

Vendors will offer their wares in the Lamb-Steele parking lot from noon to 9 p.m.

Check out local talent in this year’s Talent Show, which begins at 6 p.m. at the gazebo at Lamb-Steel Park. Also at Lamb-Steele Park, a new Calf-Roping Interactive takes place from 7-8 p.m. The ever popular Pet Parade steps out from City Hall at 7 p.m.

A Truck Meet runs from 5 p.m.-midnight and Friday’s entertainment lineup includes Sonic Honey, a Janis Joplin Tribute Band, on the Main Stage at 7 p.m. The Tommy Steele Band hits the Main Stage at 9 p.m.

Fireworks will light up the sky at the Fairgrounds at dusk.

Saturday begins with a Pancake Breakfast from 8-11 a.m. at the Eagles Hall.

Kids games, the skate park and splash pad, inflatables and more are again open throughout the day. Giant board games from from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. and a Chalk Drawing Contest at the Main Street intersection begins at 1 p.m. An Open Mic Jam featuring a variety of local performers takes place at the Main Stage from 1-3:30 p.m.

Saturday’s eating contests include pickle eating at 11:30 a.m., pie eating at 12:30 p.m. and taco eating at 2 p.m. All contests take place at the Lamb-Steele Park.

The Beverage Tent opens at 1 p.m., and food trucks and vendors will be on hand throughout the day.

Highlights include a Tractor Display on Main Street all day long, as well as a car show on Third Street from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Bike night at Third and Main street runs from 3 p.m.-midnight.

Crowd favorites include the Summer Fest Parade at 4 p.m. Lineup begins at the Fairgrounds at 1 p.m. The popular Outhouse Races make a return at Bancroft Street beginning at 6 p.m.

Saturday’s entertainment includes Paisley Grace at 5:30 p.m., Mr. J and the Warriors at 7:15 p.m., and headliner Billy Gunther and the Midwest Riders at 9 p.m. All take place at the Main Stage.

A number of food trucks offering sweet and savory items, as well as unique festival/fair food will be on hand all weekend. Vendors include Kona Ice, Sweet Spinner Cotton Candy, Swanky Fox BBQ, Twisted Burger, Elephant Ear Truck, Kin Thai Cuisine, Liquid Gold Cider and Donuts and Motor City Hot Dogs.

Visitors can also stop in the traditional brick and mortar restaurants downtown including Pizza Machine, Botana’s El Piaza, Jalisco’s, and Dee’s Country Cafe. As always nearby restaurants such as Johnny’s Place, and LaFonda Mexican Restaurant on Old M-21, Silver Grill, Stevo’s, Bomb Burgers & Breakfast, Lucky’s and other eateries along M-53 will also welcome guests throughout the festival weekend.

This year’s Summer Fest began to take shape last September. A dedicated group of volunteers met weekly to create a festival filled with old-time favorites and exciting new events.

Chamber Board Vice President and Summer Fest Kids and Contests Chair Vicki Sefcovic says they’ve worked hard to pull everything together for a fun and entertaining weekend for all.

“As a lifetime resident of Imlay City, seeing all these peices coming warms our hearts and brings back memories we enjoyed from the festival as kids,” she says.

Now that she’s a mom, Sefcovic appreciates those memories in a different way—and is thrilled that all kids’ events this year are free.

“I’m most excited to be able to offer the children’s area free because 20 years ago, I avoided fairs and festivals with my children because I couldn’t afford to let them play, so this makes my young heart so happy,” she says.

Along with Bishop and Sefcovic, other festival committee volunteers include Alyssa Sefcovic, Julie Chrysler, Jaason Bishop, Missy and Lorraine Filer, John Powell, Sheryl Davis and the Creekside Cleaning crew, Gjon Marku, Kim Jorgensen, Rob Mette, Nikki Sherman and Lorraine, Dan Sr. and Missy Filer, Christine Exline and Dan Filer.