Marshall, Michigan is a historic town full of 19th Century architecture. Recognized by the National Historic Landmark District, Marshall boasts over 850 homes and businesses, and has nine museums. The most famous of those are the American Museum of Magic which is the largest private collection of magical artifacts, and the Honolulu House which is a Hawaiian-inspired gothic revival that has been restored to it’s 1860 build.
Every May, Marshall hosts a “Free Museum Day” where the museums are open to the public. The Marshall Welcome Center also provides a free walking map that will take you on a self-guided tour of these historic homes, the Kalamazoo Riverwalk and to see over 40 historic markers. One such marker stands in front of the house which inspired Author John Bellairs, originally from Marshall, to write the book The House with A Clock in its Walls (2018) that was turned into a movie featuring Jack Black and Cate Blanchett.
Kicking off summer is our annual Marshall Blues Fest where a free family-oriented music and entertainment festival happens right on Michigan Avenue with hours of live music, food vendors and a beer tent.
There’s no shortage of events happening in the fall. For over 50 years, the historical society has put on a guided historic home tour which attracts thousands of visitors from all over. Other exciting events are the Donut Roll, a 12-mile slow roll through historic Marshall, and Skeleton Fest where over 30 life-sized skeletons are staged throughout town adding to the ghost stories that are attached to many buildings. Looking for an even bigger thrill? Adults can partake on a carriage-led ghost tour.
As the seasons change and winter approaches, Marshall transforms into a classic Christmas town with specialty shopping, a mile-long holiday lights display and Christmas parade. Attend the Candlelight Walk of historic homes or view live ice sculpting during Ice, Wine, Beer & Blues. Marshall’s Christmas decoration tradition started modestly in the 1950s and grew into the spectacular display it is today. Like something out of a storybook, arches of garland and antique holiday lights transform the downtown into a winter wonderland. Colorful decorations sparkle and twinkling lights illuminate the sidewalks filled with bustling shoppers. A life-sized manger scene is displayed at the fountain circle.
Whether looking to stay, play, shop or eat, Marshall is the place to visit. Find out more by contacting the Marshall Welcome Center at 269-781-5163 or visit choosemarshall.com.
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