St. Clair Shores says Good Bye to Summer in Style

Rockin' the Shores Sign | Photo Credit: Scott Whiteman (c) 2019

St. Clair Shores, MI — Towards the end of summer, there are signs that the season is coming to a close. The days get shorter, the afternoons are warm and summer-like but the night is cooler as the temperatures cool. The trees, with their luscious green leaves, reveal their fall colors that they have been hiding during the summer. Some may say, it is a time to give up on the fun of summer and get ready for the winter months that lie ahead in the state of Michigan.

Forget that, it time to have one more celebration to send summer off in style. One way to send off Summer in style is to have one last summer festival before the cooldown and one city that is sending summer off with style is the city of Saint Clair Shore, MI with the Rockin the Shores Festival. 

Tables set up, down the middle of the main street of St. Clair Shores, Photo credit: Scott Whiteman (c) 2019

The Rockin’ the Shores was hosted in Downtown Saint Clair Shores, Michigan and was held on September 21, 20019. Debuting in 2016, the Festival has been held in September, just before fall, since the debut. The festival has been through several changes, through the years. It has been a one-day event, then a two day and now it is back to a one-day event. Even though the number of days has changed over the years, the event has grown with attendees every year.

The approximately nine and half hour festival was filled with numerous items that make summer memorable such as good food to eat. At the festival was something that has grown in popularity over the years and that is the food truck craze …this festival had them. There were food trucks from Motor City Casino and Detroit Panzerotti Company. Both trucks/trailers were steady with customers. Both trucks/trailers were cooking up and serving good food for the customers. Can’t you just smell the food cooking on the grill?

Jeff Mrazek and his wife working at the Detroit Panzerotti food trailer. Photo Credit: Scott Whiteman (c) 2019

What would a festival be without beer and bourbon? The festival had a “cash bar”, where attendees could pick up a nice cold beer on a hot September day. The bar featured products from Bud Light, Roak, Blake’s Hard Cider, Baffin, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Coppercraft products, plus other brewers. But if you were looking to samples of the featured bourbons, then attendees had to purchase tickets. The ticket for the bourbon sampling could be purchased at the festival for thirty (USD) dollars (while they lasted). There were brands from Jim Beam, Makers Mark, Crown Royal, Basil Hayden, Knob Creek, Coopercraft to name a few. Ok, who’s thirsty?

Picture of Street vendors at the Rockin' the Shores Festival
Street vendor selling their crafts at the Rockin’ the Shores Festival 2019. Photo Credit: Scott Whiteman (c) 2019

However, there was more than just beer and bourbon at the Rockin’ the Shores Festival. On the west side of the street, was a section dedicated to some street vendors and their crafts. There were approximately 6-8 vendors selling a variety of products at the event. For example, one vendor selling rag dolls made by her own hand. The dolls were made from new, reclaimed and vintage materials. Another vendor selling food that their company made. Then there was an artist who was set up at a table and was selling canvas images. He had a few images on displayed and he was also creating many different works of art on canvases by using spray paint and a bowl…well that and his imagination as well.

Genga Station
On of the Jena station at the Shores Festival. Photo Credit: Scott Whiteman (c) 2019

Something else that was set up, was some games that everyone could play if they wanted to. There were Jenga and a Cornhole station setup up and down the street. Whenever you would walk up and down the street, attendees were playing these games. It was interesting to watch people playing these games, especially the Jenga game. It like a train wreck, you know it going to be messy but you can not help but watch. Well, watching attendees playing the Jenga game was like that. You know that the tower of blocks will fall when an attendee pulls the wrong block from the pile, but you cannot help but watch. Jena anyone?

Well let see, we mentioned the food, the games, and the vendors, what else is there to mention? What would send the summer of 2019 off in style? Oh yea, how about music. This event had it. The headlining band for the event was the 90’s band The Verve Pipe with Detroit’s favorite Sponge. But they were not the only band playing at the festival. There were many local bands playing as well. From approximately 2:00 pm till the end, there were bands playing on two stages. On the main stage, sponsored by the local car dealership, were bands like Visitor Music, The Lows, Eva Under Fire and of course Sponge (which have played the festival every year, if I am not mistaken) and The Verve Pipe.

As for the second stage, there were many local bands playing to the crowd. The stage was located on the other side of the festival and they would alternate with the main stage. When the band on the main stage would finish (in approximately forty-minute sets), the second stage would start-up and play for the audience. On the second stage were 7 Days a Year and Orbitsuns to name a couple. Between the two stages, an attendee could find something they could enjoy listening to.

The band Orbitsuns playing at the Rockin’ The Shores Festival 2019. Photo Credit: Scott Whiteman (c) 2019.

The Festival/event was just about perfect. The only event that spoiled it for the attendees was the weather. For most of the day, it was sunny and warm with a breeze. Some can argue it was a typical summer day in Michigan. The only fault I can find with the event and it not the Festivals fault, it is party crasher that decided to show up. Yep, we are talking about mother nature herself. Unfortunately towards the end of the mother nature got a bit huffy and decided to add some rain to the festival. For a brief moment, the skies opened up and a nice summer downpour came down. But the rain didn’t last too long and the festival was able to close with the major acts, maybe a bit wetter but still ready to rock. Thanks, mother nature…not

As mentioned earlier in the article, this was the fourth year of the festival. It has become a tradition in Saint Clair Shores, with everything that is needed to close out summer properly. The festival has good local music, food, cold drinks, games, and great location. Everything needed to tell summer, “Thank you summer for the memory, catch you next year.” What more can you ask for?