National Cherry Festival

food festival cherry festival
Michigan grows more tart cherries than any other state.
  • Where: Traverse City, Mich.
  • When: July 4-11, 2015

This massive, eight-day event attracts half a million visitors to Traverse City, which is known for producing most of the tart cherries in the United States.

The fest is packed with activities, ranging from cherry pie eating contests to an air show featuring the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds.

For John Russell, who has been attending since 1948, the biggest attraction is the parade.

"It is one huge human experience. All of this to honor a fruit!," he said.

Traverse City is only a couple hours away from the wild Upper Peninsula of Michigan and Mackinac Island, one of the state's top tourist attractions in the summer.

For further information: National Cherry Festival

Related: 7 up-and-coming foodie destinations

First published February 26, 2015: 1:28 PM ET

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