Warm up with some downhill action, then cool down with a beer
If you want to enjoy a brew with a view this weekend, make for Northern Michigan, where a combination suds- and snow–themed festival awaits at the Boyne Highlands Resort in Harbor Springs. The third annual Brew-Ski Festival will feature more than 100 craft brews (beers from Chicago’s Goose Island among them), live entertainment, and plenty of bratwurst. Party central will be two heated tents pitched for the weekend at the foot of some 435 acres of slopes. (No worries if the temperatures rise to melting level: Boyne has an arsenal of 384 snow guns.) The slopes will be open from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. on Saturday, March 10, and from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 11; the beer starts flowing at noon on Saturday. Should you weary of schussing, the resort has you covered: Snow tubing, cross-country skiing, zip lining, and dog sledding are also available. Should you crave a quieter outing, drive to the tiny town of Petoskey, across Little Traverse Bay. Petoskey offers many shopping pleasures, including the century-old Gaslight Shopping District, which hosts almost 200 independently owned antiques stores, artisan shops, and galleries.
GO Brew-Ski Festival at the Boyne Highlands Resort, 600 Highland Dr., Harbor Springs, Michigan; 800-462-6963, boyne.com. For more information about Petoskey’s Gaslight Shopping District, call the Petoskey Area Visitors Bureau at 231-348-2755.
Where to stay: Boyne Highlands Resort (600 Highland Dr., Harbor Springs; 800-462-6963, boyne.com)—the resort hosting the Brew-Ski Festival—is offering two-night packages for the festival weekend starting at $238 per person. This price includes Friday and Saturday night accommodations, unlimited lift tickets from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday, a welcome reception, a buffet breakfast, and tickets for five pours of beer. For a comparatively secluded stay, Stafford’s Bay View Inn (2011 Woodland Ave.; Petoskey, Michigan; 231-347-2771, staffords.com/bayview) is a historic hotel with modern luxuries and expansive views of Little Traverse Bay; rates range from $99 to $199 a night.
Where to eat: Stafford’s Weathervane Restaurant (106 Pine River Ln., Charlevoix, Michigan; 231-547-4311, staffords.com/weathervane) was built over a century ago as a gristmill but now offers waterfront views while serving oysters Rockefeller, escargot, steak, and fresh fish. Fun fact: The bar was built from the timbers of salvaged shipwrecks. At Terry’s Place (101 Antrim St., Charlevoix; 231-547-2799, terrysofcharlevoix.com), the menu includes award-winning whitefish as well as slow-roasted duckling steeped in Northern Michigan cherry sauce.
Photograph: Courtesy of Boyne Highlands Resort