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Guidebook for Traverse City

Jim

Guidebook for Traverse City

Food Scene
It's "East meets Mid-West" at Gaijin! :) Serving Japanese comfort food for lunch and dinner, in a fun and casual environment. We recommend the bao, (steamed buns), you get 2 for $4 and they are yummy! Open 11am - 10pm, closed Monday.
Gaijin
136 E Front St
It's "East meets Mid-West" at Gaijin! :) Serving Japanese comfort food for lunch and dinner, in a fun and casual environment. We recommend the bao, (steamed buns), you get 2 for $4 and they are yummy! Open 11am - 10pm, closed Monday.
Located at an old train station, this place serves delicious flat bread & lots of great microbrew beers. Kayaking rental is available at this location too with easy access to Boardman lake & river.
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The Filling Station Microbrewery
642 Railroad Place
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Located at an old train station, this place serves delicious flat bread & lots of great microbrew beers. Kayaking rental is available at this location too with easy access to Boardman lake & river.
Need a late night bite? This local pizzeria, (opened in 1970), is open until 3am on Friday & Saturday, and 1am all other nights. Conveniently located, super friendly staff, and really yummy food! Very short walk from the apartment. Carry-out/delivery only.
Dino's Pizza
543 E Eighth St
Need a late night bite? This local pizzeria, (opened in 1970), is open until 3am on Friday & Saturday, and 1am all other nights. Conveniently located, super friendly staff, and really yummy food! Very short walk from the apartment. Carry-out/delivery only.
Fantastic food! Quaint French bistro offers house-made pastries to go, classic brunch fare & weekend dinner service.
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Patisserie Amie
237 Lake Avenue
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Fantastic food! Quaint French bistro offers house-made pastries to go, classic brunch fare & weekend dinner service.
This American cuisine restaurant (comfort food) usually has a line waiting during lunch or dinner time in the summer months. Fun atmosphere, a good line-up of local beer.
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Bubba's
428 East Front Street
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This American cuisine restaurant (comfort food) usually has a line waiting during lunch or dinner time in the summer months. Fun atmosphere, a good line-up of local beer.
European dining with indoor and outdoor seating, (heat lamps are on during colder months when the patio is open). This is our favorite restaurant in town, Lindsey's favorite dish is the baked acorn squash (fall dish). Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, (brunch on Sunday). Dinner time could be a wait so RSVP would be a good idea.
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amical
229 East Front Street
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European dining with indoor and outdoor seating, (heat lamps are on during colder months when the patio is open). This is our favorite restaurant in town, Lindsey's favorite dish is the baked acorn squash (fall dish). Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, (brunch on Sunday). Dinner time could be a wait so RSVP would be a good idea.
European Fusion! The menu changes each quarter, so it's always exciting and new. It's a higher end restaurant, with both indoor & outdoor seating, but has small plates available if you want just a nibble & a drink. The bar on the first floor is always active, be sure to check out the huge antique bar table!
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The Franklin
160 East Front Street
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European Fusion! The menu changes each quarter, so it's always exciting and new. It's a higher end restaurant, with both indoor & outdoor seating, but has small plates available if you want just a nibble & a drink. The bar on the first floor is always active, be sure to check out the huge antique bar table!
We frequent this restaurant which has a great cocktail menu and offers a nice view of the Boardman River from the outdoor seating area. It doesn't hurt the menu is extensive, (small plates, large plates, sushi, YUM!). Definitely a date night kind of place.
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Firefly Restaurant
310 North Cass Street
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We frequent this restaurant which has a great cocktail menu and offers a nice view of the Boardman River from the outdoor seating area. It doesn't hurt the menu is extensive, (small plates, large plates, sushi, YUM!). Definitely a date night kind of place.
Casual atmosphere with lots of seating, a large bar & good comfort food. Local Tip: There is a small outside balcony in the back with a view of the bay. The host/ess that seats you likey won't mention it, and most people are not aware of it. Ask if there is space and s/he will seat you there if the balcony is open. :)
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Mackinaw Brewing Company
161 East Front Street
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Casual atmosphere with lots of seating, a large bar & good comfort food. Local Tip: There is a small outside balcony in the back with a view of the bay. The host/ess that seats you likey won't mention it, and most people are not aware of it. Ask if there is space and s/he will seat you there if the balcony is open. :)
Opened in 1989 this is a favorite spot for locals. Great cocktail list, and a menu with great variety, (vegetarian, vegan, & gluten free offerings are marked on the menu). Live music on Friday nights. Open until 11pm Fri-Sat, 10pm all other nights, (sometimes stays open later during the Film Festival).
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Poppycocks
128 E Front St
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Opened in 1989 this is a favorite spot for locals. Great cocktail list, and a menu with great variety, (vegetarian, vegan, & gluten free offerings are marked on the menu). Live music on Friday nights. Open until 11pm Fri-Sat, 10pm all other nights, (sometimes stays open later during the Film Festival).
The oldest restaurant & bar in Michigan! Sleder's has been operating continuously since 1882. A local favorite, tourists have slowly been finding this place over the years. A wide variety of American fare. Open until 10pm Mon-Thurs, 11pm Fri, midnight Sat, and 9pm Sun. Don't be surprised if you see people "Smooch the Moose!" ;)
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Sleder's Family Tavern
717 Randolph Street
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The oldest restaurant & bar in Michigan! Sleder's has been operating continuously since 1882. A local favorite, tourists have slowly been finding this place over the years. A wide variety of American fare. Open until 10pm Mon-Thurs, 11pm Fri, midnight Sat, and 9pm Sun. Don't be surprised if you see people "Smooch the Moose!" ;)
Exceptional restaurant. Menu changes regularly using many locally grown & seasonal ingredients. Located at the old State Hospital, (an asylum), that closed in the early 90's. The hospital has since been renovated and now contains many restaurants & shops. Trattoria Stella's offers a very unique atmosphere that is hard to authentically replicate.
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Trattoria Stella
1200 West 11th Street
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Exceptional restaurant. Menu changes regularly using many locally grown & seasonal ingredients. Located at the old State Hospital, (an asylum), that closed in the early 90's. The hospital has since been renovated and now contains many restaurants & shops. Trattoria Stella's offers a very unique atmosphere that is hard to authentically replicate.
Upscale, chef-owned spot offers small plates of light Asian Fusion cuisine, as well as salads, main plates, & signature cocktails. Happy Hour is 3pm -5pm, (that's when we go!), during that time you get 1/2 off small plates & cocktails. Open until 11pm.
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Red Ginger
237 East Front Street
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Upscale, chef-owned spot offers small plates of light Asian Fusion cuisine, as well as salads, main plates, & signature cocktails. Happy Hour is 3pm -5pm, (that's when we go!), during that time you get 1/2 off small plates & cocktails. Open until 11pm.
This chef-owned restaurant is all about farm-to-fork. The menu offers soups, salads, appetizers, entrees, as well as a Tasting Menu, (5 course or 7 course). Guest Chef Dinners & Cooking classes are also offered, (see their website for times, prices, and chef list). Reservations are recommended.
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The Cook's House
115 Wellington Street
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This chef-owned restaurant is all about farm-to-fork. The menu offers soups, salads, appetizers, entrees, as well as a Tasting Menu, (5 course or 7 course). Guest Chef Dinners & Cooking classes are also offered, (see their website for times, prices, and chef list). Reservations are recommended.
Drinks & Nightlife
An open air bar with a food truck lot that features a variety of culinary offerings. The place is usually hopping in the summer & has live music on the weekends.
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The Little Fleet
448 East Front Street
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An open air bar with a food truck lot that features a variety of culinary offerings. The place is usually hopping in the summer & has live music on the weekends.
Gay-friendly bar & dance spot featuring DJs, music videos, karaoke nights & a patio.
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SideTraxx Dance Bar
520 Franklin St
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Gay-friendly bar & dance spot featuring DJs, music videos, karaoke nights & a patio.
Open until 2am on Fridays & Saturdays. Rustic, beer hall–style brewpub serving an array of craft beers with global appetizers & entrees.
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Rare Bird Brewpub
229 Lake Avenue
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Open until 2am on Fridays & Saturdays. Rustic, beer hall–style brewpub serving an array of craft beers with global appetizers & entrees.
Hip bar offering craft cocktails & American small plates in a warehouse space with exposed beams. Great atmosphere! Open until midnight.
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The Parlor TC
205 Lake Avenue
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Hip bar offering craft cocktails & American small plates in a warehouse space with exposed beams. Great atmosphere! Open until midnight.
A local hang-out, not touristy though tourists sometimes wander in. :) This place is known for their Gyros & Greek Pizza. Very friendly staff & great prices. Expect a dive-bar atmosphere. Open until 2am.
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U And I Lounge
214 East Front Street
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A local hang-out, not touristy though tourists sometimes wander in. :) This place is known for their Gyros & Greek Pizza. Very friendly staff & great prices. Expect a dive-bar atmosphere. Open until 2am.
Absolutely our most favorite place to go when we want to get a drink. Tucked away on the 16th St next to the Boardman Lake, it offers a huge selection of original brews, a small food menu, and a large lounge that is filled with games. Have a drink then go out for romantic walk along the lake. :)
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Right Brain Brewery
225 East Sixteenth Street
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Absolutely our most favorite place to go when we want to get a drink. Tucked away on the 16th St next to the Boardman Lake, it offers a huge selection of original brews, a small food menu, and a large lounge that is filled with games. Have a drink then go out for romantic walk along the lake. :)
Voted One of the Best 100 Beer Bars in America by `DRAFT` magazine in 2014, 2015, & 2016! Massive international beer menu, with 46 beers on tap! Has a great food menu as well, and often features live music in the summer. Open until midnight.
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7 Monks Taproom
128 South Union Street
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Voted One of the Best 100 Beer Bars in America by `DRAFT` magazine in 2014, 2015, & 2016! Massive international beer menu, with 46 beers on tap! Has a great food menu as well, and often features live music in the summer. Open until midnight.
Parks & Nature
Walk or bike along the scenic trail around Boardman lake.
Boardman Lake Trail
Walk or bike along the scenic trail around Boardman lake.
Sandy beach, park with splash-pad, public restrooms, and quick service foods.
Duncan L Clinch Marina
1011 E Grandview Pkwy
Sandy beach, park with splash-pad, public restrooms, and quick service foods.
Access to the Boardman Lake for kayaking & canoeing. Parking, public restrooms, and picnic areas available. Access to the Tart Trail for walking, running, and biking.
BLT Park & Kayak Launch
Access to the Boardman Lake for kayaking & canoeing. Parking, public restrooms, and picnic areas available. Access to the Tart Trail for walking, running, and biking.
Voted "Most Beautiful Place in America" on ABC's Good Morning America. Climb the sand dunes or just take in the gorgeous views.
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Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
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Voted "Most Beautiful Place in America" on ABC's Good Morning America. Climb the sand dunes or just take in the gorgeous views.
Arts & Culture
Opened in 1892, the theater now hosts musical performances as well as comedy acts, book readings, and theatrical plays. This location is also a venue for the Traverse City Film Festival.
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City Opera House
106 East Front Street
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Opened in 1892, the theater now hosts musical performances as well as comedy acts, book readings, and theatrical plays. This location is also a venue for the Traverse City Film Festival.
Historic volunteer-run theater showcases an array of classic & original performances, fall-spring. Also a venue for the Traverse City Film Festival.
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Old Town Playhouse
148 East Eighth Street
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Historic volunteer-run theater showcases an array of classic & original performances, fall-spring. Also a venue for the Traverse City Film Festival.
Traverse Area District Library. Books, music, movie, and game rentals. Free computer use.
Traverse Area District Library
610 Woodmere Ave
Traverse Area District Library. Books, music, movie, and game rentals. Free computer use.
On permanent display is the Inuit Gallery featuring Inuit stonecut, stencil, lithograph, etching, aquatint and chine-collé prints, tapestries, sculptures and artifacts. Different exhibitions are on display throughout the year. Check the Dennos website for current installations.
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Dennos Museum Center
1701 East Front Street
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On permanent display is the Inuit Gallery featuring Inuit stonecut, stencil, lithograph, etching, aquatint and chine-collé prints, tapestries, sculptures and artifacts. Different exhibitions are on display throughout the year. Check the Dennos website for current installations.
Essentials
Organic grocery and essentials. It has a diner and a coffee shop (Oryana Cafe).
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Oryana Community Co-op
260 East Tenth Street
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Organic grocery and essentials. It has a diner and a coffee shop (Oryana Cafe).
Laundromat next to Tom's Food Market.
Kardes Laundry
1301 S Division St
Laundromat next to Tom's Food Market.
Everyone should know where the nearest Target is located, this is where ours is. ;)
Target
3130 W South Airport Rd
Everyone should know where the nearest Target is located, this is where ours is. ;)
Gas station next door. :) Has wine, beer (by the can or in packs, both local & national brands, cold too!), ice, kitchen essentials, snacks (or course), medicine, & ready-made sandwiches. Oh...and gas, haha.
Marathon Gas
501 E Eighth St
Gas station next door. :) Has wine, beer (by the can or in packs, both local & national brands, cold too!), ice, kitchen essentials, snacks (or course), medicine, & ready-made sandwiches. Oh...and gas, haha.
Laundromat; it's easier to find parking in the back parking lot, front parking is very limited.
Eastfield Laundry
1122 E Eighth St
Laundromat; it's easier to find parking in the back parking lot, front parking is very limited.
Chain organic grocery store. Offers a lot of local brands, which are marked with a "Local" sign on the shelves.
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Lucky's Market
3587 Marketplace Cir
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Chain organic grocery store. Offers a lot of local brands, which are marked with a "Local" sign on the shelves.
Entertainment & Activities
Lovely local theater operated by volunteer staff. Best movie theater popcorn you'll ever have! This theater screens international films and limited release films normally only screened in very large cities. 25 cent kids movie matinees on Saturday mornings, and cheap midnight movies on Friday nights.
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State Theatre
233 East Front Street
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Lovely local theater operated by volunteer staff. Best movie theater popcorn you'll ever have! This theater screens international films and limited release films normally only screened in very large cities. 25 cent kids movie matinees on Saturday mornings, and cheap midnight movies on Friday nights.
Michael Moore spearheaded the renovation of this historic art house movie theater on the waterfront. Unlike the State Theater, this theater screens big block buster films. Bust just like the State Theater it is operated by a volunteer staff and has fantastic popcorn. :)
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Bijou by the Bay
181 East Grandview Parkway
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Michael Moore spearheaded the renovation of this historic art house movie theater on the waterfront. Unlike the State Theater, this theater screens big block buster films. Bust just like the State Theater it is operated by a volunteer staff and has fantastic popcorn. :)
New location is 346 East Front #7. Classic arcade game & pinball machine lounge. No need for quarters, all machines are set to 'free play'. Buy a pass for the day and play all you want! :) Open from noon - midnight Friday & Saturday, noon - 11pm all other days.
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The Coin Slot
275 Garland St
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New location is 346 East Front #7. Classic arcade game & pinball machine lounge. No need for quarters, all machines are set to 'free play'. Buy a pass for the day and play all you want! :) Open from noon - midnight Friday & Saturday, noon - 11pm all other days.
AMC chain theater. Stadium seating for all screens, IMAX is also available.
AMC CLASSIC Cherry Blossom 14
3825 Marketplace Cir
AMC chain theater. Stadium seating for all screens, IMAX is also available.
Bowling, Arcade Games, Laser Tag, and more! :) Food, various beverages, and alcohol served.
Lucky Jack's Bowling Center
1705 S Garfield Ave
Bowling, Arcade Games, Laser Tag, and more! :) Food, various beverages, and alcohol served.
Pirate's Cove is a chain park, but this is the ORIGINAL! :) Two mini golf courses, bumper boats, zip-line, rope course, go-charts, kiddie go-carts, and arcade. *Closed in the winter*.
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Pirate's Cove Adventure Park
1710 U.S. 31
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Pirate's Cove is a chain park, but this is the ORIGINAL! :) Two mini golf courses, bumper boats, zip-line, rope course, go-charts, kiddie go-carts, and arcade. *Closed in the winter*.
Getting Around
Bay Area Transportation hub location. There are BATA stops all around downtown, two stops within walking distance to our building location.
Bata
3233 Cass Rd
Bay Area Transportation hub location. There are BATA stops all around downtown, two stops within walking distance to our building location.
Bay Area Transportation hub location. There are BATA stops all around downtown, two stops within walking distance to our building location.
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BATA
115 Hall St
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Bay Area Transportation hub location. There are BATA stops all around downtown, two stops within walking distance to our building location.
Near-by location for bicycle rentals. Road & Mountain bike rentals include "Flat Kits".
McLain Cycle & Fitness on E. 8th St.
750 East Eighth Street
Near-by location for bicycle rentals. Road & Mountain bike rentals include "Flat Kits".
Near-by location for bicycle rentals & motor scooters rentals. Lots of different types & models to choose from.
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Brick Wheels
736 East Eighth Street
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Near-by location for bicycle rentals & motor scooters rentals. Lots of different types & models to choose from.
Lyft ride-sharing service is available in Traverse City. Just download the app to get a ride. :)
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Lyft
31-00 47th Ave
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Lyft ride-sharing service is available in Traverse City. Just download the app to get a ride. :)
Uber is a ride-sharing service is available in Traverse City. Just download the app to get a ride. :)
Uber Greenlight
1401 W North Ave
Uber is a ride-sharing service is available in Traverse City. Just download the app to get a ride. :)