News

Behind the Scenes Tours

Get a behind the scenes look at some of West Michigan’s favorite breweries, distilleries, and historic attractions. 

Please note that the below was accurate at the time of publication. You are encouraged to confirm with locations before visiting, and make sure to adhere to local safety guidelines.

Breweries, Wineries, & Distilleries

Three Oaks

Journeyman Distillery in Three Oaks welcomes you to learn about their passion with a Distillers Tour. All tours have a maximum of 10 open spots. Tour the historic Featherbone Factory, see the grain-to-glass process, and taste Journeyman’s finest spirits in the Distillery Tour ($13 per person), or take a deeper dive with the Distillers Tour, a 90-minute tour of the history of the distillery, their process, plus samples of their spirit and four barrel tastings for $25 per person. Anyone who is over 21 years of age, needs to pay to learn, even if you are not going to sample the spirits. Those under 21 can take the tour at no charge.

Kalamazoo

West Michigan Beer Tours in Kalamazoo takes beer lovers on a one-of-a-kind journey that shows the process, the people, and the pride behind Michigan beer. These tours provide unique experiences, such as brewer meet-and-greets, exclusive tastings, and more.

Saugatuck

Many of the Saugatuck Area wineries, breweries, and cideries offer behind the scenes tours. Virtue Cider offers a guided walking tour for guests to learn about their history, operations, and cider making process. Guardian Brewing Co. offers a Beer School that educates participants about different styles of beer and the craft beer-making process. 

Ludington

Jamesport Brewing Company is Ludington’s first microbrewery to change the landscape of the downtown district. Meet the brewer and get an up-close look at how Ludington beer is made with a brewery tour, scheduled upon request.

Traverse City

Visit breweries in the Traverse City area with Traverse City Beer Week, November 13th-20th. It will be a little different for 2020, with a self-guided tour and a Beer Week app instead of the usual events. Participants will get a digital passport to use throughout the week to be entered to win prizes

Behind the Scenes Foodie Fun

New Era

Visit Western Michigan’s milk bottling facility, cheese factory, and the special cows who make it all happen at Country Dairy of New Era. The site also features a farm store and deli, where you can grab lunch and an ice cream cone before heading out to the playground.

Grand Rapids

Chef’s table is an opportunity to go back into the kitchen inside the JW Marriott Grand Rapids Margaux restaurant and work hand in hand with the culinary team. Some fun ways groups have done this is with an Iron Chef style event where attendees create meals which are judged by the restaurant chefs, showing the hustle of being in the kitchen and working with the ingredients and tools that their team uses on a daily basis. For further details contact jwgrinfo@ahchospitality.com

 

Historic Tours

Hickory Corners

The W.K. Kellogg Conference Center and Manor House is located on beautiful Gull Lake in Southwest Michigan nestled between Kalamazoo and Battle Creek in the town of Hickory Corners. The estate offers 32 acres of gorgeous grounds including champion trees, lush gardens, and lakefront access. During your visit you will feel like you have stepped back in time when life was more simple and the air more pure. Once the summer cottage of W.K. Kellogg, the Manor House and grounds offer self-guided tours where a story is told about a generous local philanthropist whose gifts continue to offer guests relaxation in a natural setting.

Lansing

Visit the State Capitol Building in Lansing for free tours six days a week and then walk a few blocks to the Michigan Historical Center which houses the Library of Michigan, the State Archives, and the Michigan History Museum.

Traverse City

Experience the “Escape to the Asylum” tour from the Village at Grand Traverse Commons in Traverse City. Available beginning November 1, this private tour offers two hours of learning the history of the former State Hospital. Explore the grounds, venture into unrenovated buildings, and even walk through the 1883 Steam Tunnel. Test your courage with the “Historical Ghost Lantern” tour from Haunted Traverse. This tour takes you through downtown on a “ghost walk” to hear the history, ghost stories, and paranormal happenings of the area. 

Mackinaw City

Step back in time and explore the historic sites of the Mackinac State Historic Parks and how early settlers, millers, fur traders, and soldiers lived and worked in Mackinaw City and Mackinac Island.