If you're interested in what's going on at the moment, Ann Arbor has it's own event discovery site at http://todoina2.com (started by some of my friends, who are UM grads). It's great because it gives you a wide range of options to consider every day.
Besides that, I'd definitely recommend Mark's Carts. They're food carts - mostly up during the summer - with really delicious locally-sorced food. It's usually a great atmosphere as well.
Hill is an acousitcally perfect venue that hosts a variety of musical talents. If you are in Ann Arbor try to get tickets to a show playing there. You won't be disappointed by the sound quality of the theatre.
If you are lucky enough to be there in October try and catch the Halloween Concert. The Music Students put on a classical concert with a musical theme of - you guessed it - Halloween. Don't forget to wear a costume!!
You're at the U, so why not act like a student and sit in on one of the athletic contests? The football games always sell out, but you can find hungry students looking to make a quick buck by selling their tickets (as well as more mature folks who will undoubtedly charge you a premium if they can get away with it) outside the Big House. If you're around during basketball season, it's great fun (and much cheaper - top ticket is $22) to see the hoopsters in action at Crisler Arena. Our hockey team, playing in the Yost Ice Arena, is usually in the Frozen Four. And the University fields a myriad of other sports teams at venues across the campus. Michael Phelps swam in our pool, and you can catch a meet and see the rising stars of the future, free of charge.
This is the latest information from the University's athletics website on tickets:
Tickets for volleyball, men's and women's gymnastics, and wrestling are $5 for adults and $3 for children and senior citizens. Tickets for baseball, softball, men's and women's soccer are $7 for reserved chairback seats and $5 for adults and $3 for children and senior citizens in the general admission bleachers. Children 5 and under are admitted free of charge. University students with a valid student ID will be admitted free of charge. Doors/gates open 1 hour prior to the event.
Admission is not regularly charged for regular-season competition in the following sports unless otherwise noted on the team's schedule: field hockey, rowing, men's and women's swimming and diving, men's and women's tennis, men's and women's track and field, and women's water polo.
This museum offers displays concerning dinosaurs, fossils, minerals, local wildlife and such. It also has a planetarium. Museum is open Mon-Sat 9-5; Sun noon-5. The Planetarium is only open Sat 10:30-3:30 and Sun 1:30-3:30. The museum is free. The planetarium is $3.
When people want to have a great time in Southeast Michigan while supporting a great cause, they head for the annual Dawn Farm Jamboree. The Jamboree is a family event held on the second Sunday of September every year. Admission and activities for all ages are FREE, including great live music all day by a popular local band, hayrides, animals to pet, pony rides, lots of games and activities for children, a rock climbing wall, tours of the 74 acre farm, and live and silent auctions and a gift table with a variety of donated goods and services, many at bargain prices! Dawn Farm welcomes all to join us and share in celebrating the tremendous power of hope, recovery and community in the lives of individuals, families, and our entire community - and have great fun and find terrific bargains in the process! Funds raised from teh auctions help defray treatment costs for individuals who have no other resources.
There's ample free parking, and the site is easily accessible from major highways.
Ann Arbor has three Episcopal congregations, and depending upon where you are staying or the style of worship which you prefer, one of the others may be more appropriate. But I'm a big fan of St. Andrew's Church, which is the oldest of the trio -- indeed, it was the second Episcopal parish in Michigan -- and which features really excellent music. (I once attended an 8:00 AM Easter service and was delighted to find that it included full choir, brass and bells. What a treat!) St. Andrew's has also recently undergone a major renovation, including re-installation of some marvelous Victorian stained glass. It's a friendly place, too -- the church has been feeding a Sunday breakfast to those who need one for more than thirty years.
Services are at 8:00 (generally no music), 9:15 (zippy 25-minute family-friendly Eucharist), and 10:00 (main choral mass); compline is sung on Sunday evenings at 8:00 PM. There are also weekday services on Wednesday (Eucharist at 7:00 AM, Evensong at 6:00 PM), Thursday (Eucharist with healing at 5:30 PM), and Friday (Eucharist at 12:15 PM).
The best in acoustical bluegrass music. The Greencards will be at The Ark on Saturday, July 14th, 8:00pm. Great music!! I have seen them 3 times before and they never fail to entertain the fans. Don't miss this great show!
If you are in Ann Arbor during football season, you must attend a football game at Michigan Stadium which is commonly known as "The Big House". It is the largest American football stadium in the world. Built in 1927, it has an official capacity of 107,501, though football game attendance often exceeds 111,000 when bands, stadium staff, and other people are added. They are working on expanding the bleachers and adding luxury boxes to fit even more people (there is much debate over whether or not this renovation should take place).
During home games, the town of Ann Arbor is like a ghost town. Everyone will be at the game. The student section is a mass of blue and maize and it’s not unusual to see people being tossed in the air after every touchdown.
The University of Michigan's sports teams are called the Wolverines, after the state's nickname. They participate in the NCAA's Division I-A and in the Big Ten Conference. Michigan's football program is among the most storied and successful in college football history. Michigan won the first Rose Bowl game in 1902, has won an NCAA-record 849 games through the 2005 season, and has an all-time winning percentage of .745, also an NCAA record. The Wolverine football program claims 11 national titles: 1901, 1902, 1903, 1904, 1918, 1923, 1932, 1933, 1947, 1948 and 1997. Most recently, Uof M football has produced three Heisman Trophy winners including Charles Woodson, the only primarily defensive player to win the award.
The Michigan Theater is a beautiful old movie theater that also occasionally holds concerts and other events. I usually like to watch a flick from the balcony. They also use real butter on their popcorn. Yum!
If interested in the college's sports and teams past and present, be sure to visit the University of Michigan Margaret Dow Towsley Sports Museum. It has a lot of exhibits and will leave you knowing more than you (or at least I) ever wanted to know about the Univeristy's athletes.
1. Anson Brown Building (1001-1007 Broadway). This block, once known as Lower Town, is the oldest commerical building in the city being built in the 1830s. Continue southwest on Broadway via the Broadway Bridge to Beakes Street.
2. Second Baptist Church (216 Beakes). This church was one of the first African American churches in the city, built in the 1890s. Continue down Beakes to Main Street.
3. Kellogg-Warden House (500 N. Main). This house, was built in 1835 by the Kellogg and Warden families. One of the oldest houses in the city. It was moved from Lower Town to its present site and now houses a museum. Continue south down N. Main to Huron Street. Turn left .
4. Silas Douglass House (502 East Huron). Built in 1848, this Gothic Revival was once owned by Silas Douglas, an early professor at the university and later the city mayor. Continue down Huron to State Street.
5. Unitarian Church (corner of Huron & State). This Romanesque style church was built in 1882. Quite unique. From Huron turn right on State Street walking past the edge of campus.
6. Newberry Hall (434 S. State). This building was once the U of M Student Christian Association in 1891. Today it's the Kelsey Museum (see other tips to do). Turn back on State Street . Turn left heading on E. William.
7. Deke Shant Building (611 E. William). Built in 1878 and designed by U of M architecture professor William LeBaron Jenney, it was the first fraternity on campus. It's still owned by Delta Kappa Epsilon. Continue down E. William turning right on S. Division.
8. Bennett-Kempf House (312 S. Division). This house was built in 1853 by postmaster Henry Bennett. Today it houses a museum.
Continue up Division to E. Liberty turning left. Walk down to S. Fourth and turn left.
9. Bethlehem Church (423 S. Fourth). Built in 1896 this beautiful stone church was built by the German community. Head back up S. 4th turning left on E. William and right on Main.
10. End your walk on Main Street enjoying the many buildings that look just as they did in the 1870s.
If you're traveling in Ann Arbor with children make sure to stop off at the Hands-On Museum. It has four floors featuring displays on the human body, the natural world and technology. Open Tues-Fri 10-5:30, Sat 10-5 and Sun 1-5. Admission $5, children under 12 $3.
Burton Memorial Tower, located on Central Campus, is home to a 55-bell Baird Carillon. You can climb to the top and hear the bells being played Mon-Fri from noon-12:30. It also offers nice views of Central Campus.
Rent a canoe or kayak and take a ride down the Huron River. Best time of year is in the spring or early summer when the water level is high. In the late autumn the water level can get so low that your canoe can hit the bottom in places, sometimes even causing you to have to get out and push your canoe into higher water.
A small museum which contains artifacts excavated at the university's Mediterranean and Near Eastern digs. Go and check the mummy ; it'll probably only take 10 minutes out of your day to visit.
Tuesday - Friday 9-4 Sat-Sunday 1-4