The annual Meridian Winter Blast (MWB) returns to downtown Detroit from Friday, January 20 – Sunday, January 22 for a lineup of fun winter activities, live entertainment and delicious local restaurants.
Chemical Bank and Matrix Human Services team up every year to donate to those in need by using the MWB admission as a donation to Matrix Human Services. The admission to the 2017 festival is three canned food items or $3.
From skating on Campus Martius Ice Rink to speeding down the signature snow slide, Winter Blast draws thousands of guests to the busy city streets every winter.
This year it’s happening a few weeks early to coincide with the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) so visitors from around the country and globe can enjoy mingling with locals while they’re in town. Courtesy of Bedrock Detroit, all NAIAS visitors to Winter Blast weekend will receive free admission. Just show your hand stamp from the auto show at any Winter Blast entrance for free festival admission.
We’ve got all the details you’ll need for winter fun in the D!
The Meridian Health Plan Winter Slide is redesigned for this year’s festival, featuring a 30-foot high slide that shoots its riders through a pitch-black tube, dropping at a steep, 40-degree angle.
According to the website, speeds rack up to about 20 mph, whisking the riders down its slippery slope.
For those who don’t like drops, the slide also features a 30-degree drop slide.
Skip the line with a Meridian Winter Slide Fast Pass. Visit the Meridian Health Plan Booth inside the Monroe Street Comfort Zone for more details.
Bedrock Ice Bar and Stage
Check out the newest attraction to Winter Blast: The Bedrock Ice Bar and Ice Bar Stage.
Located on Cadillac Street, south of Cadillac Square, take a seat and chill at the 16-foot ice-carved bar, tables and chairs and drink from a refreshing, frozen drink carafe.
From 6:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. on Sunday, adults 21 and up can sip drinks on the rocks while listening to music in this heated attraction.
Local DJs will take the Ice Bar Stage from 8:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. for a full music line up featuring DJ Thornstryker on Friday and DJ Ryan Richards on Saturday.
Sponsored by St. John Providence Health System, guests can enjoy free ice skating on the Campus Martius Rink. Bring your own skates or rent a pair for $3.
Ice skating exhibitions will feature local professional and amateur figure skaters during skating breaks at the rink, including performances by Detroit Skate Club, New Edge Figure Skating Club and Creative Edge Teams.
See the full lineup on the Winter Blast website.
Sponsored by Downtown Detroit Development Authority, cozy up by a warm fire and make a tasty treat from the marshmallow and s’mores kits, available for $3.
MetroPCS Zip Line
The MetroPCS Zip Line is back in action.
A staple of MWB, guests can soar through the air in Cadillac Square on the longest, fastest mobile zip line available.
Stretching at 300 feet long (the length of a football field), and 34 feet high, the ride lasts about 20 seconds. The ride also allows two people to zip simultaneously on two lines. Admission at $10 per person.
Food Truck Rally
Check out the Food Truck Rally, a dozen local restaurants and start-up food trucks offering a variety of cuisines for festivalgoers.
Check out the MWB website for a complete list of participating food trucks.
Located on the Woodward Circle, just south of the Winter Slide, take a walk through the Ice Garden, featuring a variety of expertly crafted and lighted ice sculptures.
This year, the Ice Garden pays tribute to Warner Bros. films with characters from LEGO Batman, Kong: Skull Island, and Wonder Woman.
The 2017 MWB music lineup will feature DJs in an outdoor ice bar, a new acoustic stage at night, as well as local Metro-Detroit bands throughout the weekend.
For a complete list of stages, locations, times and musical acts, check out the MWB website.
Marketing Associates Family Tent
MWB is fun for the whole family with festival programming for kids of all ages at the Marketing Associates Family Tent.
The Detroit Red Wings and the Detroit Pistons come together at the Detroit Interactive Sports Zone for fun games, raffles, photo and autograph opportunities.
The Michigan Science Center will be located in the kids tent throughout the weekend with free activities like toy tinkering, wind tubes and stage shows on the kid’s stage.
The kid’s tent is located just south of the Meridian Winter Slide and features performances on the DTE Energy Family Stage.
Comfort Zones can be found every 150 feet at Winter Blast, filled with great music, food and interactive exhibits.
The Taste of Detroit Comfort Zone is located at Monroe Street outside Quicken Loans headquarters (One Campus Martius) and features fun food and bands on the Michigan Lottery Stage.
The Atrium inside One Campus Martius is a chance to warm up and visit the shops.
The Cadillac Square Comfort Zone is just outside the Campus Martius Rink and features the Soaring Eagle Music Stage and fabulous food.
Marketing Associates Family Tent features kids programs, along with acoustic acts at night.
The Z Deck, located at 1234 Library Street, is home to an array of graffiti art, performed by artists all around the world and is a six-minute walk to Campus Martius.
The One Campus Martius visitor parking, is right across the street from the events and has a convenient one-minute walk to most attractions.
Kennedy Square Garage is located on Griswold Street, between Michigan Avenue and Fort Street at 777 Woodward Ave, and has the shortest walk to the excitement, clocked at one-minute.
The rates for all three garages are $3 for every 20 minutes, with a maximum rate of $20 per day. Between 4:00 p.m. – 4:00 a.m., rates are as low as $10. Weekend rates are $10.
For more information on parking downtown, check out our article on Parking In Detroit’s Popular Spots.
The Meridian Winter Blast is hosted in downtown Detroit Friday, January 20 from 4:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m., Saturday, January 21 from 11:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m. and Sunday, January 22 from 11:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Don’t forget to check out the 16 LuminoCITY sculptures that dot the downtown area with a spectacular array of lights, color and sound, now until February 18.
Follow the excitement on the Winter Blast official Twitter page and be sure to use #MeridianWinterBlast and #MWB2017Rocks in all your winter festival pics.
What festival attractions are you most excited for this year? Let us know in the comments!