A Day for Dad

From historical tours to live music, celebrate Father’s Day by doing what he loves most // Illustrations by Fan Wu

For the Adventurer

A day with dad at one of the Metro Parks gives you the option of walking, running, biking, and more. In particular, Oakwoods Metropark is offering Father’s Day Canoe Tours that run along the backwaters of the Huron River (metroparks.com). Or, you can bring out your competitive side and sign up for the 39th annual Plymouth YMCA Father’s Day Run. The athletic event features one-mile, 5K, 10K, and kid’s races. Proceeds support the YMCA’s Annual Campaign (ymcadetroit.org). If your father is more of an urban explorer, rent a MoGo bike to venture along paths at the Detroit Riverfront or Dequindre Cut (mogodetroit.org).

For the Pop Culture Man

For those who never had the chance to see John, Paul, George, and Ringo’s electrifying live performances? On June 8, the Royal Oak Music Theatre will allow you to experience the mania with 1964: The Tribute, a musical group that has brought The Beatles’ greatest hits to live audiences for over 30 years (1964web.com). During Father’s Day weekend, the annual Jazz Spectacular will be held at the Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre at Freedom Hill, and Steve Miller Band and Peter Frampton will perform at DTE Energy Music Theatre (313presents.com). For a few laughs, the “Weirdo Whisperer,” Ed Hill, will perform standup sets at Mark Ridley’s Comedy Castle (comedycastle.com).

For the Drink Connoisseur

Motor City Brew Tours is hosting an afternoon of drinking on the Detroit River. Bring your father along for a relaxed ride on the Detroit Princess Riverboat for the Father’s Day Beer Tasting Boat Cruise. The three-hour excursion includes 30-plus seasonal beers and hard ciders from Michigan and beyond (motorcitybrewtours.com). For fans of distilled spirits, make a reservation to go on a walking tour of the Detroit City Distillery Whiskey Factory. It’s in a historic building built by Goebel Brewing Co. and later acquired by Stroh’s, and converted into a space to produce ice cream. Guests can also sample artisanal cocktails. The upstairs doubles as an event space and whiskey aging facility (detroitcitydistillery.com).

For the Gearhead

If dad is an auto enthusiast, there’s no better place to take him than the birthplace of a vehicular legend. The Ford Piquette Plant in Detroit gives tours to the public and teaches them about the factory where Henry Ford’s Model T was created (fordpiquetteavenueplant.org). In nearby Dearborn, you can also tour the Ford Rouge Factory for an inside look at the iconic Ford F-150. Or, visit the Greenfield Village Motor Muster event, which will feature hundreds of American cars. (thehenryford.org). If the sky is more your speed, head to Ann Arbor for an introductory flight lesson by a member of the Michigan Flyers (michiganflyers.org).

For the Grill Master

For great brisket and ribs, bring dad to Woodpile BBQ Shack in Clawson or Slows Bar BQ or Red Smoke Barbecue in Detroit. Offering a twist on typical grilling, The Whitney is also hosting a special event just for dad. The Detroit eatery’s annual Father’s Day Bar B Que will feature live entertainment, ribs, chicken, ice-cold lemonade, and a special gift for every father in attendance (thewhitney.com). For a more personalized approach, barbeque at home with a cut of lamb, beef, or pork from Eastern Market favorite Ronnie’s Meats (ronniesmeats.com), McClure’s pickles (mcclures.com), and Better Made potato chips (bettermadesnackfoods.com).

For the History Buff

Greenfield Village in Dearborn is holding Historic Base Ball 1867 Style on Saturdays and Sundays throughout the summer. The event features a game of gloves-optional, no pitcher’s mound, old-school baseball, which has its own unique rule book (thehenryford.org). To experience a first-hand look at history, stop by Historic Fort Wayne’s Civil War Days the weekend of and before Father’s Day. During the first weekend, historical interpreters take over the Detroit fort and teach guests about garrison living, wartime medicine, and cooking. The following week, join an after-dark tour at the fort for paranormal stories you won’t hear during the day (historicfortwaynecoalition.com).