Sick of winter temperatures? We may have a cure!
Meridian Winter Blast, presented by Quicken Loans, returns to downtown Detroit January 26-28 for winter time fun for all ages. From outdoor activities and cool music to warm treats and kid-friendly indoor activities, Winter Blast is sure to please! We’ve got all the details you need to make the most of this annual event!
There is a $3 per person fee which will be donated to Matrix Human Services. Children 3 and under are free. All guests under the age of 18 must be with a parent or guardian at all times during the festival. Dogs are not permitted at the festival.
If you’re looking for a free way to enter the festival, you can donate three cans of non-perishable food items at Southeast Michigan Chemical Bank branches in exchange for a free ticket. Since Winter Blast is happening the same weekend as the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), visitors of the NAIAS can get their hand stamped at Cobo before exiting and simply show the stamp at Winter Blast for free same-day admission.
Definitely bring cash with you, as some of the attractions are offered for a fee and you’ll want some cash on hand for snacks and beverages.
Meridian Winter Slide: At $3 per ride, the 30-ft. high slide located on Michigan Ave. will have riders going 20 mph down at a 40-degree angle or a 30-degree angle if 40 seems a bit too scary.
MetroPCS Zip Line Adventure: For $10 per ride, you can fly 300 feet across at 34 feet in the air for a thrilling experience in the heart of the city.
City Slopes: With the Olympics just around the corner, Michigan’s two largest ski resorts – Boyne Highlands and Boyne Mountain – will set up snow in Cadillac Square, using their proprietary snowmaking system to create beginner level slope terrain. Visitors can get fitted for ski or snowboard gear, take a 20-minute ski and snowboard lesson and receive special offers for resort visits.
Polar Plunge: For $10, take the plunge and jump into a polar pool to support the Special Olympics. Not only are you helping a great cause, you’ll also get a coupon for a free hot chocolate and a choice of coupon for a free ride on the Winter Slide or free skate rental. Pre-registration is encouraged.
Ice Garden: One of the most picturesque areas of the festival is the ice garden, where professional ice sculptors turn blocks of ice into beautiful carvings that will be lit so you can take fun family photos day or night.
Campus Martius Rink: It’s the only weekend you can ice skate for free (skate rental is $3)! You can also enjoy skating exhibitions from local professional and amateur figure skaters from the Detroit Skate Club, New Edge Figure Skate Club and Creative Edge Teams.
Enjoy music from 50 artists over the course of three days on three stages:
- Michigan Lottery Stage: Located on Monroe St., you can hear a variety of bands from R&B and Southern Rock to Alternative Pop and Singer/Songwriters.
- Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort Stage: Located on South Woodward, visitors can enjoy music from Techno and Hard Rock to Outlaw Country and Pop-Folk artists.
- DTE Energy Family Stage: Located on Michigan Ave., musical artists take the stage at 8:30 p.m. on both Friday and Saturday night.
Check out the full lineup of musical acts and performance times.
Take a break from the chilly temps in one of three Comfort Zones:
- The Atrium in One Campus Martius: Warm up, grab a bite to eat at the building’s restaurants and visit shops.
- The Taste of Detroit: Located on Monroe St., the tent offers local food for purchase and bands on the Michigan Lottery Stage.
- The Marketing Associates Family Tent: Located on Michigan Ave., the tent has family-friendly programming, crafts and activites during the day from the Michigan Science Center, Arts & Scraps and DTE Energy Foundation, with acoustic musical acts at night.
Food Truck Rally: Grab a bite to eat from some of the area’s most popular foodie places. Participants include: Beans & Cornbread, Bigalora Wood Fired Cucina, Crepe Day-Twah, Famous Dave’s, Hero or Villain Deli (Saturday & Sunday only), Imperial Ferndale, Mercurio Food Specialties, Nosh Pit, Poppin’ & Mixin’ and Sweetwater Tavern.
Marshmallow Roasting: For $3, you can buy a marshmallow and s’more kit to make gooey treats at the available roasters near the Hard Rock Café.
Parking & Transportation
Car: For $10, your best bet for parking downtown is at the 1 Campus Martius Building Parking Garage (1188 Farmer St.), the Z Deck (1234 Library St.), or the One Kennedy Square Parking Deck (719 Griswold). Or, check out our post about parking for downtown Detroit hot spots.
Bus: FAST is a new service from SMART that connects the city and suburbs and offers limited stops so you can get to your destination quickly. Running every 15-30 minutes, the FAST Gratiot and FAST Woodward operates from 5:00 a.m. – 1:00 a.m. and FAST Michigan operates 5:00 a.m. – midnight. Check out routes and schedules. You can also find additional public transit routes.
QLINE: Ride the D’s newest transportation option to the Campus Martius Station, which is right near the Winter Blast entrance gate.
People Mover: The best stop for Winter Blast is Cadillac Center. Special hours will be in effect: Friday and Saturday: 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 a.m. and Sunday: 11:00 a.m. – midnight.
Whether you’re visiting the D for the first time or the millionth, it’s a great time to bring friends and family to downtown Detroit for Winter Blast, the Auto Show and delicious restaurants and make warm memories for years to come. For more information visit WinterBlast.com.
Share your pics on social media using #MeridianWinterBlast and tag @OpportunityDET!