2022 has been named the Year of the Lilac by the National Garden Bureau, and — as a point of pride for Michiganders — Mackinac Island just so happens to be home to more than 250 varieties of the purple plant. Next month, the city will celebrate this distinction when it hosts its 74th annual Lilac Festival.
“The blooming of the lilacs has been a signal that the summer season has officially begun on Mackinac Island for more than 150 years, and the Lilac Festival is a celebration we always look forward to hosting,” says Tim Hygh, executive director of the Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau, in a press release.
Spanning 10 days, this year’s event is honoring the theme Flower Peace: Peace, Love, Lilacs. The festivities begin on June 3 with the Coronation of the Lilac Festival Queen and the unveiling of the official poster for the 2022 festival in Marquette Park. Other highlights include the Lilac Festival 10K Run & Walk and Dancing on Market Street with West Michigan Bootscooters on June 4, the Michigan Cornhole Tournament on June 11, and the Mackinac Island Lilac Festival Parade and other closing events on June 12.
Guests can also enjoy complimentary admission to the Richard and Jane Manoogian Mackinac Art Museum and British Landing Nature Center, walking tours and planting classes with lilac expert Jeff Young, special tours of Fort Mackinac, Sip N’ Sail Cruises, live music, and art activities.
“…After a few years of modified festivals, we’re truly elated to bring the 74th Lilac Festival back in a big way with the return of the Grande Parade and other interactive activities,” Hygh says in a press release. “From Jeff Young’s historic walking tours to lilac painting and planting sessions, the Lilac Festival is a quintessential representation of the deep history and culture of the island.”
For more information, visit mackinacisland.org.