10 Fun FREE Activities

Farm Market – Saturdays ~ May – October

This award-winning open-air market, sponsored by the City of Rockford, features fresh-grown produce from only Michigan farms. A variety of delicious fruits and vegetables are on display each week and the selection changes as the season progresses. Also available are flowers, homemade bread and honey, fresh from the hives.

United Bank Rogue River Blues Series ~ Tuesdays ~ June – mid- August

This free outdoor concert series is a huge hit among visitors and locals, alike. Attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, blankets and picnic baskets, sit back and enjoy some of the best blues bands in the area. Don’t have time to pack a dinner? – Just visit one of the many fine restaurants in the area and take it with you. The concerts take place in the heart of downtown Rockford in Garden Club Park. The setting is picture-perfect with the stage resting on the banks of the beautiful rolling waters of the Rogue River.

Fred Meijer White Pine Trail ~ All Year Long

This paved stretch of trail is part of the state’s Rails to Trails program. The conversion of rail beds to a paved path for bikers, walkers and rollerbladers  has allowed outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy the sights and sounds of nature along White Pine Trail. The path runs along the bank of the Rogue River and features bridges, picnic areas, a nature preserve, wooded acreage and a look at plenty of wildlife along the way.

Start of Summer Celebration – Second full weekend in June

Help us celebrate the end of the school year and the start of the hazy, crazy days of summer. The Rockford Chamber of Commerce’s celebration features fireworks, parade, children activities, a craft fair and plenty of food and fun. Also featured are carnival rides on the midway.

Rotary Reading Festival – June

Reading Rocks in Rockford – and this Rockford Rotary Club literacy festival shows it. A parade of favorite storybook characters kicks off this family-friendly event and ends in Garden Club Park. There are plays, entertainment and plenty of talented authors on hand at the park, autographing books and telling stories. It is a great way to teach your kids the value of the written word and that it can open up new adventures – and you don’t even have to leave home.

Art in the Park – Second Saturday in September

This open-air art show is a huge hit every year. It is a juried event that takes place along the banks of the Rogue River in Garden Club Park. The beautiful work of artists is on display in nature’s perfect setting and features artwork in clay, pen, oil, photography, sculpture and other mediums. This is another event hosted by the Rockford Area Arts Commission.

Harvest Festival – Last weekend in September

The Rockford Chamber of Commerce helps the community celebrate the Harvest each year in this two-weekend event. Take a step back in time and enjoy building a scarecrow, a hayride through the downtown streets, musical entertainment and a petting zoo. The event is host of a Chili Cook Off, Classic Car Show, Tractor Parade, Children’s Costume Contest and Kid’s Tractor Pull. There are demonstrations of weaving, soapmaking and wood carving and plenty of children’s activities – all free!

Holiday Lighting Ceremony – First Friday in December ~ the Rockford Chamber of Commerce and the City of Rockford kick off the holiday season with this beautiful event taking place in Peppler Park, right by the Rockford Dam. Christmas Carols, performed beautifully by the Rockford High School Choirs and the RHS Jazz Ensemble start the evening. A Message of Peace is then presented and the countdown begins amid darkness. When the crowd reaches zero, Rockford is illuminated by thousands of twinkling lights that are adorning every tree, light pole and bush along the dam and the downtown streets.

Santa Parade First Saturday in December~ the town of Rockford welcomes the jolly man in the red suit each year with a parade. Santa keeps coming back because Rockford is one of his favorite towns, and we are happy to have him. After the parade, Santa sets up shop in the Rotary Pavilion and visits with good little boys and girls and hears their wish lists.

Holiday Carriage RidesDecember (for dates and times, see Calendar of Events) ~ the Chamber sponsors horse-drawn carriage rides throughout the downtown streets of Rockford. It is a beautiful way to celebrate the Christmas season. The rides are completely FREE to the public and a great way to share this special time with family and friends.