Good art and good food make Pure Southwest Michigan experience

The artistry of fall colors, work by local artists and the food grown on area farms all are on display during the third annual Arts & Eats Pure Michigan Autumn Experiences tour.
 
The tour through Southwest Michigan's back roads, Oct. 19-20, features more than 55 artists' studios, restaurants serving locally grown food and farms that have the best in Michigan's specialty farm products. These venues, some of which are not normally open to the public, welcome visitors from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.
 
The free, self-guided tour has individual tour stops and four central venues where artists will be at work and information on the tour will be available. The central venues are Gilmore Car Museum, Pierce Cedar Creek Institute, Hastings Fourth Annual Downtown Sculpture Exhibit and Bay Pointe Inn
 
At individual stops, art galleries and studios will be the place to see potters, photographers, sculptors and other artisans in action. 
 
Some farms--those that raise fiber-producing animals like alpacas and sheep--provide additional opportunities for tours. Works are available for sale as well.
 
Tour-takers also will find farms where produce is grown, livestock is raised and artisanal foods are made. Restaurants featuring farm-to-table entrees can be found as well. Participating restaurants feature special menu items using local products by chefs using their creative culinary talents.
 
Participants on the tour are encouraged to request an “Arts and Eats Passport” from any of the participants. By collecting six stamps, tour-goers are eligible to win one of dozens of prizes donated by the artists, farmer and eateries.

And new this year is “A Taste of Arts and Eats Wine & Cheese Bus Tour” presented by the Thornapple Arts Council for $25 per person. (Call call 269-945-2002)
 
Writer: Kathy Jennings, Second Wave Media
Source: Dianna Stampfler, Promote Michigan
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