I’m so excited to share with you all a fabulous tour I took this past week in my own hometown of Kalamazoo, Michigan. We definitely made some memories and even visited a store we’ve never been before.
We started our tour at The Union Cabaret and Grille. This popular restaurant located downtown on South Kalamazoo Mall is known for its entertainment, relaxed atmosphere and great food.
We got to decorate a gingerbread house while we were there. The houses are pre-built and come with unlimited candy and decorative icing. We got 2 tubes of white and 1 tube of green which was plenty. There was a wide variety of candy to choose from. The kids really enjoyed doing this activity together as a family.
The food was amazing. I chose the Hickory Pulled Chicken Wrap which was pulled chicken and veggies wrapped in whole wheat tortilla with herb cream cheese and a creamy dipping sauce. The girls chose the Cochon De Lait Po’Boy, a Louisiana- style slow-braised pork shoulder, shredded and tossed in gravy, served in a Mackenzie’s Bakery French Baguette, and topped with house picked sweet red onion and white cheddar cheese. My boys ate from the kid’s menu and really enjoyed their chicken fingers and fries.
After we ate dinner Santa made his appearance. It was awesome to see the kid’s faces around the room light up as he came around the corner. After Santa made his rounds he took a seat on the stage and everyone who wanted to see Santa, formed a line to sit on Santa’s lap and get their pictures taken. He even gave each kid a present which I thought was extra special.
If you’re interested in making a gingerbread house together as a family there’s one more for the season scheduled for Sunday, December 18th. Reservations are strongly recommended. There was a full house the day we visited.
After our lovely lunch and gingerbread making experience, we walked across the street to Spirit of Kalamazoo, where we were greeted by the owner, Andy. I’m almost ashamed to admit that I’ve lived in Kalamazoo for 11 years and this is the first time I’ve stepped into this adorable little shop.
The interior boasts Kalamazoo memorabilia, clothing as well as the State of Michigan, Western Michigan University and Kalamazoo merchandise. I don’t recall seeing this much Kalamazoo spirit in one place. It made me proud to call Kalamazoo my hometown.
Not only do they sell merchandise, you can also buy Plainwell Ice Cream year ’round here. They serve sundaes, milkshakes, malts, floats and up to 24 flavors in cones or dishes! If you’ve never had Plainwell Ice Cream you’re really missing out, let me tell you it’s amazing! I would highly recommend the Blue Moon and Cougar Tracks ice cream.
We all sat down to eat our ice cream and took in the view of the snow falling outside the windows. I believe each kid commented on the view, which was so relaxing. The owner is great and the people that work here are super friendly.
After we left Spirit of Kalamazoo we made our way to one of the Holly Jolly Trolley stops. The Holly Jolly Trolley is sponsored by DeNooyer Chevrolet and other local businesses and travels around downtown Kalamazoo to provide people with easy access to parking, stores, restaurants, and more.
The best part about riding the Holly Jolly Trolley is… it’s free to ride! It’s heated too! It runs from November 25th to December 31. You can view the schedule here.
Our last stop was Candy Cane Lane in Bronson Park. The park is so beautiful and festive this time of year. There’s so many photo ops, so make sure you bring your camera and your entire family when you visit! I’ll leave you with some pictures to enjoy since pictures speak louder than words.
A big thank you to Downtown Kalamazoo Incorporated, The Spirit of Kalamazoo and The Union Cabaret & Grille and all the participating businesses for hosting our family on this trip.
The Union Cabaret & Grille
125 S. Kalamazoo Mall
Kalamazoo, MI 49007
Phone: (269) 384-6756
The Spirit of Kalamazoo
154 S. Kalamazoo Mall
Kalamazoo, MI 49007
Phone: (269) 382-6249