It's time to shake that cabin fever and experience the fresh outdoors during Zehnder's magical Snowfest. The art of snow and ice carving is on display throughout Frankenmuth, dressing the town in frosted embellishments; and you are invited to join in the frozen fun.
Here is a list of 25 tips that will help you not only survive Snowfest, but also make memories that will last you a lifetime!
1. Arrive prior to 11AM to find the best parking on the weekend.
2. Plan your route and desired parking before you leave. Parking areas and alternate routes for Northbound 1-75 travelers: take Exit 136, go east past the first light to Dixie Highway, then continue to Dehmel Road and turn left. Follow Dehmel to Curtis Road; turn right on Curtis. Follow Curtis to Flint St. then turn left and park at the Fortress Golf Course parking lot or the Boy Scout building lot. Southbound 1-75 travelers: take Exit 144A (Dixie Highway) to Junction or Curtis. Turn left on either and follow eastward to Frankenmuth. Or, take M-46 East to M-83 South to Frankenmuth.
3. Shuttle transportation into town is available at Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland West Entrance on Saturday (January 27th) starting at 11AM and Sunday (January 28th) starting at 12PM.
4. The largest parking lots are available at the River Place Shops, Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland, Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth, and Heritage Park.
5. Make your dining reservations now! Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth does take dining reservations based on availability, you can make yours today by calling (800) 863-7999.
6. There are sculptures all over town! Zehnder’s Restaurant, Bavarian Inn Restaurant, and Frankenmuth River Place Shops will feature unique carvings and sculptures outside, but also have fun Frankenmuth merchandise and more inside. So, make sure to check out the shops, you might even find a keepsake souvenir to take home!
7. A great place to begin your tour of the snow sculptures (and possibly your Frankenmuth shopping spree) is at Frankenmuth River Place Shops with the children's snow sculptures and the high school snow sculptures.
8. Before strolling through town, pick up your favorite snacks and treats from local eateries and shops. Zehnder's Marketplace is where you'll find some irresistibly delicious treats and goodies!
9. If you love chocolate then come out on Wednesday, January 24th at 10AM for the “All Things Chocolate” Baking Contest (sponsored by Michigan Sugar, WSGW, Le Creuset, & Cars 108) featuring cookies, cakes and brownies. Contestants will be competing for the best recipe using chocolate as a main ingredient. There will be cooking/baking demonstrations, musical entertainment, door prizes, samples of all the entries and a complimentary recipe book of all the recipes to take home.
10. Take a stroll over to the Professional Ice Exhibition (sponsored by Pepsi) located behind Tiffany's/Rau's where you can watch a talented team of ice carvers work on creating a multi-block ice display featuring an 'Under the Sea' theme.
11. Everyone is welcome on Thursday, January 25th, to the complimentary Bingo (sponsored by Birch Run Premium Outlets, Joe FM, & HAP) located in Zehnder’s Warming Tent from 1:00PM – 3:00PM where you can play to win a large variety of prizes. Pop in to play for just a few minutes, or play for the entire time. All ages are welcome.
12. If you are a beer lover, stop over to Zehnder’s Tap Room, where specialty beers, like J.P. O'Sullivan and Wolverine Brewery, will be featured.
13. Many activities at Snowfest are absolutely free including the Petting Zoo and Musical Carousel Rides (sponsored by Reimold Printing) on Friday the 26th (4PM - 7PM), Saturday the 27th (11AM - 5PM), and Sunday the 28th (12PM - 5PM).
14. Other activities are offered for a nominal fee including $3 pony rides and a $5 entrance fee to the warming tent Friday (26th) and Saturday (27th) after 6:00pm. Children 12 and under have free access.
15. Our warming tent is actually heated! Many first-timers show up to the tent ready to brave drafty walls and cold spots. Feel free to shed your coat and dance the night away with various musical entertainment.
16. Support the Frankenmuth Jaycees with a stop by their food booth, Friday from 3PM - 8PM, Saturday from 11AM - 8PM, and Sunday from 11AM - 3PM at the Frankenmuth Chamber/Visitor Center.
17. We will end Saturday, January 27th, with a bang! Watch our Annual Fireworks Display (sponsored by United Association Local 85, Huntington Bank, & OpenAire) from Zehnder’s parking lot at 6:45PM.
18. There will be ice block carvings throughout town on display from Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland all the way to the north end of town by Huntington Bank. Make sure to take a walk or drive and check them out.
19. Bring your camera for a chance to win! Each year, Zehnder’s hosts a Snowfest Photo Impressions contest. Upload your favorite festival photo to their Facebook contest page for your chance to win great prizes!
20. “Like” Zehnder’s Snowfest Facebook page, or follow them on Twitter to get the latest updates and photos live from the festival!
21. Don’t forget to cheer on your favorite carvers and vote for your favorite sculptures! Public voting begins Friday, January 26th.
22. Those who want a leisurely stroll through the festival without the crowds should visit Sunday evening, or Monday, January 29th, 2024.
23. If snow and cold weather isn’t your thing, remember you can always come and visit the shops, restaurants, and Bronner’s while the rest of your party is walking around in the cold. Remember to stop by the Frankenmuth Visitor Center beforehand, and pick up a 2024 Coupon Book, featuring deals and discounts of local stores, restaurants, and more!
24. Don’t forget to take a lap around the Frankenmuth Ice Rink! Located in Zehnder Park, this winter attraction will be open throughout the festival week. Frankenmuth shares center stage with the Saginaw Spirit as we look forward to hosting the Canadian Hockey League's International Tournament of Champions, the 2024 Memorial Cup presented by Dow! And a special thanks to support of partners like Huntington National Bank.
25. For a festival map and a complete schedule of events, visit https://www.zehnders.com/snowfest/. *All outdoor activities subject to change based on weather conditions*
We appreciate the support we have received from our guests, carvers and sponsors over the past 33 years and are excited to welcome you to Zehnder’s Snowfest 2024.