Arts Council Workshops, Classes

Special Events

Please stay tuned to this page and our facebook page for our 2023 classes and workshops.



Starling Theater Company Presents

Shakespeare in Conkling Park

 The Starling Shakespeare Company will perform a 90 minute production of “A Midsummer Nights Dream” at  Mackinaw City’s Conkling Park 335 S. Huron on Thursday, August 11th, 2022 at 6 pm (OR, as a rain date, August 18th, 2022 at 6 pm).

Starling Shakespeare Company is a migratory theater company. That means they
are uninhibited by physical boundaries in a variety of settings. They present diverse
and varied performances in arts vibrant communities throughout the country.

Starling Shakespeare Company’s work amplifies the playfulness and honesty in
Shakespeare’s plays. Today, in this fast-paced world, how often do we take the time
to revel in joy, play, or creativity? Starling aims to inject some of the creative energy
of the Renaissance into today.

Theater is a communal experience. That means it’s a dialogue – an interactive
conversation – with the audience. The very soul of theater is cleverness, creativity
and finding imaginative solutions to problems. This is true of characters portrayed
and it’s true of the artists portraying them. This theater company constantly seeks
inventiveness and resourcefulness throughout their rehearsals. The exciting part is
that naturally translates to performances where actors and audiences both can revel
in the experience of making discoveries together.

Starling Shakespeare Company looks forward to an exchange of ideas,
experiences, and perspectives everywhere they land, and they seek it from their
audiences with humility and gratitude.

As this is an open air setting, bring your own blankets or seating and be prepared to
experience Shakespeare in a truly unique and entertaining event suitable for all

To find out more about SSC:

Presented by the Mackinaw City Area Arts Council (MCAAC) with sponsorship and
support from the Mackinaw Woman’s Club, the Village of Mackinaw and Mackinaw Chamber of Commerce.

WaterCOLOR workshop with Pam Wilburn

Pamela Wilburn, signature member of the Michigan Watercolor Society, has been a commercial artist and an art teacher in both the private and public school setting. Pamela holds a bachelor’s degree in art education with a concentration in commercial art.

Join Pam for a WaterCOLOR Workshop the weekend of June 11th and 12th and take your paintings to the next level. Pam will demo and teach how to use color and value to enhance your paintings. We will work on a couple of different projects including a still life, an abstract piece w/leaves, and a few color mixing exercises. Learn how value and color can affect your paintings.

Friday night: For those wishing to attend a meet and greet will be held at 7pm for a half hour to 45 minutes
Saturday: 9am to 5pm Demo and painting throughout the day with breaks for coffee and lunch.
Sunday: 10am to 1pm Continue/finish work from Sat. with a critique to follow.

Participants will need to bring 3 pieces of paper (approx. 11×14) as well as their pallet already set up and a variety of brushes.

Class limit is 15 students. All painters are welcome from beginners to advanced.Participants will need to bring 3 pieces of paper (approx. 11×14”) as well as their pallet already set up and a variety of brushes.

Class will be held at Mackinaw Woman’s Club, 310 E. Jamet Mackinaw City.  Fee is $125 for members and $150 for non-members. Memberships can be purchased for 2022 at $25 for individuals or $35 for families. To sign up for the class call 231-412-2787



Acrylic Exploration with Barb Weisenburg


June 30, 2022—-Acrylic Exploration with Barb Weisenburg 11-3:30pm

Location: Women’s club 310 East Jamet St. Mackinaw City
Fee is $40 for members and $55 for non-members

A step by step process that explores a unique beginning and builds in layers for a Gustav Klimt type finale! Participants can bring 2 black sharpies (one fine tip and one ultra fine… sometimes you can find a double point one with a different size on each end), pencil, kneaded eraser, tracing paper, 10 paper plates, water container, roll of paper towels, and some inexpensive liquid acrylics (black, white and 3 or 4 colors… choose colors you like together)(like the acrylic craft paints). Tube acrylics work too but you would need to bring some matte medium to thin them down. Dress for mess and bring a snack if you wish. It is a lot of fun.

Call 231-412-2787 to sign up for this class. Limit of 20 students. This is a samples that Barbara has completed but you will have an individual choice of what subject matter you choose. Templates will also be available.















Watercolor with Megan Swoyer

“Magnificent Monarch”

Thursday July 7th, 2022 from 6:00pm to 8pm

Fee $40 for members and $55 for non-members

Beginner and beyond watercolorists will capture a busy butterfly and a pink-orange zinnia or two. We’ll dive into various leaf techniques, showcase layers of petals, and capture the subtle nuances of the flowers’ and butterfly’s aura. We’ll be using wet-into-wet techniques as well as wet-into-dry.

To sign up for this class call 231-412-2787. Class is limited to 20


2022 Children’s Summer Art Workshops

We are coming back with four great programs for children this summer.  Our workshops are free to all ages. Children under 6 should be accompanied with a parent or guardian.  Times from 10am to 12pm at Mackinaw City Pavilion behind Mackinaw City Public schools on 609 West Central Ave Mackinaw City.  For questions contact instructor Mallory at (906) 440-8980 or email at email hidden; JavaScript is required

July 11 Paint Bird Houses—- July 25 Collage Tree—–  August 8 Picasso Masks—–  August 22  Driftwood Chimes



Tie Dye and Reverse Tie Dye

Instructor Melissa Dewitt
Fee $25 for Members $40 for non members $15 for student
Times 1-3pm Thursday July 14th, 2022
Women’s Club Back Yard/ Downstairs if rain day
Class Duration 2-3 hours
All ages welcome, young children must be supervised
Only 2 children under 10 per adult
Class limit- up to 20 participants

Class begins with selecting desired patterns/colors. Instructor will demonstrate technique and break into groups with instruction as we move through the process.  After tying, dying and bleaching, color will need to soak for 60-90 minutes.
Some items will be rinsed end of class, others will be added to gallon bag to go home. Instructions for finishing provided.

MCAAC Provides: dye, bleach, forks, rubber bands, string, buckets, plastic dispenser bottles, latex gloves, tin pans and grates, gallon ziplock bags, location and print out instructions of folding/tying techniques.
Please Bring: Your white or black cotton items to Tie Dye.

   Waterfall Water Color Workshop

Instructor Barb Weisenberg

August 4th, 2022 11am-3pm
$40 members $55 non members

We will focus on portraying moving water and rock formations in a step by step format. Barb will supply the instructions and Arches paper from France and Winsor Newton paints from England. Participants  will need to bring a container to put water in, a pencil, a kneaded eraser, a roll of paper towels and a box of Kleenex. Dress for mess and bring a snack and water to drink. Hope you can join us.

Class limited to 20 participants.  To sign up call 231-412-2787


Tie Dye and Reverse Tie Dye

Instructor Melissa DeWitt

Fee $25 for Members $40 for non members $15 for student
Times 1-3pm Sunday August 21st
Women’s Club Back Yard/ Downstairs if rain day
Class Duration 2-3 hours
All ages welcome, young children must be supervised
Only 2 children under 10 per adult
Class limit- up to 20 participants

Class begins with selecting desired patterns/colors. Instructor will demonstrate technique and break into groups with instruction as we move through the process.  After tying, dying and bleaching, color will need to soak for 60-90 minutes.
Some items will be rinsed end of class, others will be added to gallon bag to go home. Instructions for finishing provided.

MCAAC Provides: dye, bleach, forks, rubber bands, string, buckets, plastic dispenser bottles, latex gloves, tin pans and grates, gallon ziplock bags, location and print out instructions of folding/tying techniques.
Please Bring: Your white or black cotton items to Tie Dye.


Poetry Out Loud and Bonfire

August 25—Poetry Out Loud with Bonfire
Heritage Village 1425 W. Central Ave. Mackinaw City.  Near the pavilion.
Beginning at 7PM
This is a free event

Poetry is not a luxury. It is a vital necessity of our existence.

Come join us around a crackling bonfire and share your poetry or poems from your favorite poets. This will be a stimulating evening of artistic rhythm and rhyme. Experience a new world of truth and beauty of the spoken word at the natural settings of Heritage Village.

Bring your own chairs, beverages and poems. Smores will be provided by the arts council after the readings. All are welcome to attend this free event.

Watercolor with Megan Swoyer

“Wildflower Charm”

Sept 15— 6-8pm
Mackinaw City Woman’s Club 310 E. Jamet Mackinaw City
Class Fee $40 members $55 non-members.

Beginner and beyond watercolorists will capture a simple bouquet of wildflowers plucked straight out of NE Michigan woods. One never knows what one will find in the woods, but together, the discoveries are always charming, especially in a simple glass jar. We’ll be using wet-into-wet techniques as well as wet-into-dry, and each step of the way, all techniques will be explained for beginners and beyond. Bring some table salt!

Class limited to 20 participants.  To sign up call 231-412-2787


This is an archived workshop for 2021.  New workshop information for 2022 will be updated on our website and facebook pages.

2021 Children’s Summer Workshops

Summer is back in swing and so are our very popular Children’s Workshops.  We are offering four fun programs opening with July 8th, Wax Paper Lantern, July 22nd, Printmaking   Aug 5th,  Dream Catcher and August 19th, Tissue Paper Fun Board.  Our workshops are free to all ages. Children under 6 should be accompanied with a parent or guardian.  (20 Person limit) on a first come first serve basis.

Times from 10am to 12pm at Mackinaw City Pavilion behind Mackinaw City Public schools on 609 West Central Ave Mackinaw City.  For questions contact instructor Mallory at (906) 440-8980 or email at email hidden; JavaScript is required








This is an archived workshop for 2021.  New watercolor classes will be updated for 2022 on our website and face book page.



Come enjoy painting this beautiful watercolor in a step by step technique. We will explore composition, color use, and watercolor techniques. The Instructor is experienced, award winning artist Barbara Weisenburg. She will supply the paints and watercolor paper.
You will need to bring a pencil, small spray bottle, paper for notes taking, water container, your own beverage and snack.
Dress for mess.
Thursday, July 29
11am-3:30 pm
Cost $30 members $40 non members
Women’s club building 310 E. Jamet St, Mackinaw City
Class is limited to 20 people. If you are unvaccinated, we ask that you wear a mask. Pre-register by calling Lorie at 231-412-2787

Open Art/Craft Sessions with Seniors


Mackinaw City Area Arts Council is partnering with Wawatam Senior Center to offer Open Art Sessions on Tuesdays from 3:00 to 4:30pm at the Lion’s club building at 205 Cedar St. Mackinaw City. The Lion’s club is home to the senior center and anyone is welcome to attend, you do not have to be a member.

The arts council will have a dedicated staff member each week with supplies and a project to complete. Senior center members will have full access to paint and craft supplies provided by the center, free of charge. For non members the arts council will provide an art kit for a small fee if you wish to participate in the project or bring your art supplies or any craft item you are working on and join us. Bring a friend or make new ones. You might even want to stay for dinner.

The Senior Center salad bar and soup is available at 4:30 with dinner being served at 5:30. Membership is open to all over 60 and meals are $4 for members. Non members can dine for $10.

July 6th, 2021 Card Making
July 13th, 2021 Rock Painting
July 20th, 2021 Clothes Pin Wreath-Beach Flag or Watermelon Design
July 27th, 2021 Acrylic Painting on Canvas
August 3rd, 2021 Driftwood Painting
August 10th, 2021 Fairy rock garden painting
August 17th, 2021 Clay Bead Making
August 24th, 2021 Patriotic Wall or Door Hanging
August 31st, 2021 Flag Painting “My home sweet home”
Sept 7th, 2021 Clay Pot Modgepodge
Sept 14th, 2021 Cake Pan stepping stone
Sept 21st, 2021 Watercolor bookmarks
Sept 28th, 2021 Tin Lanterns
October 5th 2021 Fall scenes painting
October 12th, 2021 Instructor choice
October 19th, 2021 Gourd Painting
October 26th, 2021 Pumpkin Table decoration
November 2nd, 2021 Rock Painting
November 9th, 2021 Instructor choice
November 16th, 2021 Acrylic on Canvas
November 23rd, 2021 Instructor Choice
November 30th, 2021 Card Making
December 7th, 2021 Wreath Making
December 14th, 2021 Ornament Making

This is an archived project that will be returning in 2022. Please stay tuned for new dates.

Drop in Rock Painting at our Kindness Rock Garden

Join members, locals and tourists in rock painting at our Kindness Rock Garden this summer. The Kindness Rock Garden is at Maritime Park on 412 Huron St at the waterfront.  All ages are welcome to attend this fun event.  You may bring your own rocks and paint if you like but  paint and rocks will be available for all who attend.  Afterwords you may keep the rocks for yourself or a friend or add them to the garden for all to enjoy. There is no fee for the project but donations are accepted. We will have a small shaded area so bring your sunscreen.   We hope you can join us on the dates below and bring a friend, it’s all about kindness and art.


All dates are Fridays from 2-4pm

 June 25 /  July 9  /  July 23 /  Aug 6  /  Aug 20














Altered Book are no longer on display at the library.  This is an archived project.


  March 3, 2021  Altered books are now on display at Mackinaw Area Public Library.  Our thanks to all who participated.  There were many creative ways in which the books were altered. We hope you are able to see the exhibition and pick out a favorite altered book.  Books are still available at the library, if you are interested in beginning a new project.
From Nov 2020–The Mackinaw Area Public Library and the Mackinaw City Area Arts Council are joining forces to bring you – our members and patrons – an awesome project to keep you entertained through the dark half of the year. Library Director Tanya Procknow has set aside 100 vintage, hardcover books for you to create your own Altered Art Book. The books are available for pick up at the Mackinaw Library on a first come-first served basis. You’ll want to pick up your book ASAP so you have your choice of title and/or cover color. The theme for your Book is completely up to you. Throughout the winter months, we will post short video how-tos on both the MCAAC and MAPL websites to keep you inspired, but in the mean time, check out altered art books on Pinterest and YouTube. There are no limits as to what you can do with a bit of inspiration and basic art supplies. Cut, collage, paint, draw, write, carve, glitter, glue, sew, splash, color, fold, embellish, trim, stamp, print…. whatever makes your own heart sing. We’d like to have your books finished by March 1, 2021, so that they can be displayed at the library for everyone to enjoy. We’d also love for you to share photos with us as you go along. Be sure to “Like” both of our Facebook pages as well to make sure you are in on all the Art Book activity. You are free to get started as soon as you pick up your book. In the near future, the Mackinaw Library will have books you can check out on all aspects of creating Altered Art Books to get or keep you going.

2020 Pandemic Memories Quilt Project

March 3, 2021 The Pandemic Quilt project is finished and on display at Mackinaw Area Public Library.  Soon it will be on the move to Royal Oak Mi. Library for exhibition.  We wanted to thank those that participated and acknowledge their talents.


2020 Contributors to Pandemic Quilt

The idea for the Pandemic Quilt came from members of the Mackinaw City Area Arts Council. The white quilt squares were cut 9” X 9” from a cotton sheet from the Vagabond Hotel, a historic hotel in Mackinaw City. 68 blank quilt squares were placed in the Mackinaw Area Public Library for people to take. Of the 65 squares taken, only 18 were returned. MaryAnn Moore studied the returned quilt squares, laid them out and used what fabric she had on hand for the sashing (strips of fabric between each square) and the backing. Remember, there is a pandemic. Shopping is limited and the motto became, “use what you have!” The only “new fabric” purchased for the construction of the Pandemic Quilt was the green cotton used for the outside edge binding.

#1 Pandemic Nurse 1 by SuAnn Handschy, Indianapolis, IN and Carp Lake, MI
SuAnn is member of the Bliss Bunch Quilters, a group of women who enjoy quilting. They meet at the Carp Lake Town Hall every other Monday in non-pandemic days!
Medium: Cotton fabric

#2 “On Tideland” by Deb Zagurney, Carp Lake, MI
A modified copy of Josef Albers, “On Tideland”, which was selected for display in her chambers by Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who passed away in 2020. Medium: Acrylic paint on cotton fabric.

#3 Home Alone by Martha Smyth, Mackinaw City, MI
2020 felt a little like the movie, “Home Alone,” especially at the beginning of the quarantine. How life goes on outside your home really doesn’t affect you, because you feel alone in the world, scared of the unknown and under seize. The big black screen represents the only activity, from either the TV or the phone or computer screen.
Medium: Cotton fabric, felt, embroidery floss, beads.

#4 Labyrinth by Martha Smyth, Mackinaw City, MI
A worldwide pandemic and quarantine! New medical protocols, emotions, and even a new worldview! How were they expressed and broadcast? New words and new meanings for old words. The swirling labyrinth leads you into a new vocabulary – whether your age is 3 or 83!
Medium: Cotton fabric, permanent markers.

#5 Pandemic Nurse 2 was made by Donna Watkins, Carp Lake, Mi
Donna is a member of the Bliss Bunch Quilters.
Medium: Cotton fabric

#6 “Do Unto Others” by Sheryl Potts, Bliss, MI
“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” is the mantra that echoes through my childhood memories – a gentle reminder to be kind, be good, be honest, be true. Since the pandemic started, I’ve been heartbroken to see so many who refuse to wear a mask to protect their families, friends, neighbors, coworkers, along with everyone else they meet but have yet to know. I wonder about their childhoods, about who forgot to teach them The Golden Rule. Unless you’re a superhero in disguise, no one likes wearing a mask – they are uncomfortable, fiddly, hot, and we are forced to smell our own breath. BUT, they could protect someone we love with all our hearts from sickness or even death. For me, it’s not even a question. I will wear my mask to protect others in hopes that others will do the same to protect me. My quilt square was created from my own homemade inks, Posca pens, a medical mask cut into tiny squares, and golden embroidery floss.

#7 “Rona Medley” by Lorie Archambeau, Carp Lake, MI, and Earp, California
When the virus hit the US, my husband Jerry and I (both of us in the senior category) were in our winter home in the Sonoran Desert.  We live on a native reservation and were told we could not leave only for essentials. It was frightening in the beginning not knowing the details of how the virus acted.  Going to the grocery store could put us in danger of losing our lives or infecting another.  It was early May when we decided to come home to Michigan.  I made masks from an old pillow case and packed a Rona Kit with sanitizer and wipes.  Filling up with gas we never touched the nozzle or the doors when entering any location.  Some of the rest areas along the way were closed, others had attendants cleaning and sanitizing the area. We made lunches for two days and made hotel reservations in non-hot spot cities along our route.  Then we drove 10 hours a day for 3 days, spending only 2 nights in hotels to minimize our risk.  We made it home safely and quarantined for 14 days as required.  November we’ll be returning to the desert with our Rona kit and staying safe.
Medium: Cotton Fabric and permanent markers

#8 Rosemary Kukec, Dafter, MI
Always a procrastinator, I waited until the last minute to decide to make a block. This led to several crisis moments! One unintended cut and the decision to write a message even knowing the shaky hands would not cooperate, I carried on. That is something that I learned is good during this time!
Medium: Cotton Fabric applique.

#9 Time Spent During Covid by Angie Morthland, Mackinaw City, MI
With the Covid-19 restrictions, I was blessed to be able to put my efforts into the Mackinaw Area Historical Society, American Rosie the Riveter Association, and the Icebreaker Mackinaw Maritime Museum, while still being safe and caring for family and friends from afar. Volunteering kept me feeling a part of something and being purposeful.
Medium: Cotton fabric and embroidered patches

#10 “Her Collar” by Deb Zagurney, Carp Lake, MI
A lace collar applied over an acrylic pattern was inspired by the iconic style worn in court by Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg who passed in 2020.
Medium: Acrylic paint on cotton fabric with lace collar applique

#11 Toilet Paper by Deb Zagurney, Carp Lake, MI
Toilet paper was on the minds of most people in 2020 when panic buying emptied store shelves. The idea is based after Andy Warhol and Josef Albers
Medium: Acrylic paint on cotton fabric



#12 Got TP? by Martha Smyth, Mackinaw City, MI
Fear? Loss of control? Security? Normalcy in cleanliness? Privacy issues? Who knows why we overstocked TP at home and then lived with empty store shelves for so long? It was a worldwide phenomenon. Humans around the world are more alike than we realized.
Medium: Cotton fabric and a toilet paper roll!

#13 Covid-19 Virus by Sandy Planisek, Mackinaw City, MI
This design represents the “brand” when someone mentions the corona virus. This spiked sphere says it all.
Medium: Cotton fabric, yarn, ribbon.

#14 Liquid Gold by Martha Smyth, Mackinaw City, MI
I felt like there was a halo around hand sanitizer – especially at the start of the quarantine – when physical contact with people, pets, and inanimate objects – even your groceries – were suspect for carrying the “plague”. Still loving the Walmart door attendants who – before your very eyes – wipe down every cart before it gets reused by a customer. Bless you ladies and gents!
Medium: Cotton fabric, cotton embroidery floss, sequins.

#15 Six Feet by MaryAnn Moore, Mackinaw City, MI
This Covid-19 virus brought so many new vocabulary words that became everyday language. Now when talking to someone, you think, “Am I standing 6 feet or more away from the person I am conversing with.” And don’t stand too close or I will tell you to back away!
Medium: Cotton fabric, crayons.

#16 Pandemic Nurse 3 by Dorothy Kreuger, Mackinaw City, MI
Dorothy is a member of the Bliss Bunch Quilters.
Medium: Cotton fabric, cotton embroidery floss.

#17 MASKED by Martha Smyth, Mackinaw City, MI
Who is that masked man, woman, child? When we go out for groceries (or to church when it’s allowed) everyone is a stranger in a strange new land!
Medium: Cotton fabric, needlepoint canvas, cotton embroidery floss.

#18 This quilt was the idea of the Mackinaw City Area Arts Council as a way to continue art during a quarantine where personal contact was limited. March 2020 – December 2020
Medium: Cotton Fabric and fabric crayons.

#19 Don’t Touch this Baby! Paula Barber, Cheboygan, MI
My friend has a new baby in the family – her grandchild. Due to COVID-19 recommendations she was unable to have physical contact right away.
Medium: Cotton fabric.


#20 Pandemic Nurse 4 by Dallas, Indianapolis, IN,
Dallas is a friend of SuAnn Handschy, who is a member of the Bliss Bunch Quilters. Essential workers, especially the medical community, were the cornerstones during the pandemic.
Medium: Cotton fabric.







Mackinaw City Area Arts Council  “The Kindness Rock project ” is now live at Maritime Park down on the waterfront at Huron avenue and Depeyster st. We hope you bring your painted rocks and share your creativity with our community.  Please take a picture of your rock(s) and share with us when placing in the garden.  You can view ideas for painting and materials to use at the link below for… The Kindness Rocks Project.  This activity provides great social distancing with hours of creativity and is a great pursuit for both children and adults.




The art walk has been removed for the winter season. Please check in the spring for new locations and imagery.


 “The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance”…..Aristotle

We all see things differently to some extent. Public art is a way to share others’ views of the world we live in, appreciate their talents, and enrich our community aesthetic. Based upon public interest and reaction to this year’s installations, MCAAC is hoping to keep this as an annual event in future years.


The Mackinaw City Area Art Council (MCAAC) is excited to announce the completion of their 2020 MCAAC Art Walk. MCAAC has installed and will maintain a year-round public display of fine art reproduction prints in four popular lake-side Village of Mackinaw City parks. This project, in partnership with the Village of Mackinaw City, is intended to encourage art awareness and appreciation, local tourism engagement, cultural awareness and enhancement.

Aristotle said, “The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance.“

“We all see things differently to some extent. Public art is a way to share others’ views of the world we live in, appreciate their talents, and enrich our community aesthetic. Based upon public interest and reaction to this year’s installations, MCAAC is hoping to keep this as an annual event in future years.“, stated Trustee Dan House.

Four submissions from a wide variety of entries from Michigan-based artists were selected for this year’s public MCAAC 2020 Art Walk. The entries were evaluated for their interest and artistry in the context of the theme of “The Nature of Northern Michigan”. Art Walk participants can look forward to seeing works of art from Kim Diment (Grayling), Dan Feldhauser (Grayling), Robert Parrish (Livonia) and Barb Weisenburg (Milford). Art installations will be at Alexander Henry Park, Gary Williams Memorial Park, Chief Wawatam Park and the Veteran’s Memorial Park (marina).

The mission of the Mackinaw City Area Arts Council is to promote participation in and appreciation of the arts in the Straits of Mackinac area through year round exhibits, education, activities, and performances. Grants and membership dues support MCAAC’s general operating fund to promote the cultural vitality of the Straits area of Northern Michigan.



In partnership with Mackinaw City Historical Society and Heritage Village we present Art in the Woods Trail.  If you are interested in sharing your creativity with the community please contact MaryAnn Moore.  Information listed below.



New for 2020

DROP-IN ART is cancelled until further notice!

Do you want to dabble with your favorite art technique or learn something new? If so, then come to our new (free) Drop-In Art Class at Church of the Straits (307 N. Huron Street, Mackinaw City), on Fridays at 2 PM, starting February 14th.

Bring the work you want to finish and your artistic enthusiasm, and we will decide where the spirit moves us. We may have five different activities going on or may decide to concentrate on one thing for a day.

* The classroom is located in the basement of the church. Enter the door near the flag pole facing N. Huron Street. Contact MaryAnn Moore at 734-934-0170 for more information.




Cancelled for 2021, we hope to be back on schedule in 2022.


The Mackinaw City Area Art Council will be sponsoring the 9th Annual Winterfest Art Exhibit during the Mackinaw Winterfest Weekend, organized by the Mackinaw Area Visitor’s Bureau. The exhibit will be held Friday, January 17 through Saturday, January 18, 2020 with an artist reception on Friday afternoon from 3:00pm to 4:30pm. Saturday hours are from 10:00am to 4:30pm.The exhibit will be held at Mackinaw Clothing and Sportswear, located downtown at 319 East Central Avenue, Mackinaw City.

Art lovers will expect to see artwork never before displayed at Winterfest. Come, explore the exhibit and decide which artist should receive the People’s Choice Award.

This Winterfest Arts Council Exhibit is free and open to the general public. The “Meet and Greet” Reception is an opportunity to come and view the artwork while enjoying refreshments and speaking with the artists.

The members of the MCAAC are looking forward to this year’s exhibit and they are hoping to see many new members displaying their work. If you would like to exhibit your artwork and you are not a member, membership information can be found at:

MaryAnn Moore, Chairperson

Mountain Dulcimer Classes


Classes are being offered at the library.  Spectators, new participants or the curious are welcome to attend.  Email email hidden; JavaScript is required for more information.


Below are 2019 Archived Events

Fabric  Dyeing in a Jar




Driftwood Art Part Two


Due to our highly popular class on June 18 we are bringing back the class for another night on Thursday August 8 from 6-9:30pm.  Please see the particulars below from our first class description.

From Clay to BRONZE

A talk by sculptor Andy Sacksteder

Andy Sacksteder, a sculptor, is one of the recipients of the first Mackinac State Historic Parks Artist-in-Residence Program.

Andy has won several awards including first place in 2015 International Art Prize competition.  He will be coming from Gladstone, MI for three weeks on Mackinac Island during which time he will sculpt a life-size bust of a person historically relevant and significant to Mackinac Island.

Two of his Art Prize award winning sculptures entitled “Reach and Splash” are now overlooking the Straits from Mission Point on Mackinac Island.  Among many other works he was commissioned to sculpt a young 6’3″ Ernest Hemingway which stands in Pennsylvania Park in Petoskey, MI as well as renowned Ohio State University football Coach Woody Hayes which stands in Columbus, OH.

Monday July 1, 2019 7pm

Mackinaw Area Public Library

528 W. Central Ave.

Free and open to everyone.




Children’s Summer Workshops

Again this summer MCAAC is hosting Children’s summer workshops.  Three workshops will be offered  June 27,  July 18 and August 8. All workshops are from 10am to 12pm at Mackinaw Pavilion behind Mackinaw City Public Schools 609 West Central Ave. Mackinaw City.  Workshops are free to all ages, no registration required. Age 6 and under must be accompanied by an adult.  Twenty person limit.  Wear clothes to get creative in.

Smart Phonography with Dan Weilhan

The best camera to use is the camera with you and that camera is almost always your smart phone.  This presentation will help you get the most out of your smart phone with tips that move you beyond taking “snapshots”.  It will give you the know-how to make images you are proud to post, print and display.

Tuesday July 9 from 7-8PM      Mackinaw Public Library 528 W. Central Ave. Mackinaw City.

Free class (donations always appreciated)


           Drawing with Meagan and Christine Nola


Basic introductory tips to drawing, including a variety of landscape and perspective methods will be taught.  A few simple drawing techniques will be covered to help improve basic drawing skills and ability to capture a moment or idea.  Drawing doodles and sketches can be useful tools throughout everyday life.  Examples of adding color will be shown.  No experience needed-any skill level welcome.

Tuesday August 6 from 6:30-8:30pm     Pellston Airport 2nd floor conference room, 1395 US-31 , Pellston, Mi.

$20/$15 MCAAC Members.       Registration check to MCAAC P.O. Box 113, Mackinaw City, Mi.  49701 by August 1, 2019



Christmas Time in Chicago

Thursday through Saturday Dec 5-7, 2019.  One of a Kind Show.  Chicago Art Museum, Macy’s/Marshall Fields building tour, German Christkindlmarket, Driehaus Museum, Museum of Science and Industry.Trader Joe’s

Price includes: Bus, two nights in downtown hotel and tickets to all shows/tours/museums  $450 per person based on double hotel occupancy.  $570 per person for single occupancy.  $430 and $550 respectively for MCAAC members One pick up/drop off downstate available.

Registration check and contact info to MCAAC, P.O. Box 113, Mackinaw City, Mi. 49701 by September 1, 2019

For more information contact Linda at 231-838-4484 or Mary Ann at 734-934-0170













2018 Archived Workshops

Mary Lou Peters Intro to Watercolor


On Tuesday, November 13, Mary Lou Peters presented a workshop designed for those who have always wanted to try watercolor painting without investing in supplies. The class was held from 7:00 to 9:00pm at the Mackinaw Woman’s Club building, 310 East Jamet Street, Mackinaw City. Students left with a completed 5” x 7” painting suitable for framing. Cost to student was $35.00, with a $10.00 discount offered to members of MCAAC, which includes all materials provided for this class.

Mary Lou teaches watercolor classes on Mackinac Island and on Sanibel Island, Florida, as well as in her home studio near Mackinaw City. Her joyful spirit is contagious, and her gentle encouragement brings out the artist in her students. For more information, contact the Mackinaw City Area Arts Council, c/o Joann P Leal at email hidden; JavaScript is required or 231-436-5626.

The mission of the Mackinaw City Area Arts Council is to promote and encourage participation in and appreciation of the Fine Arts in the Greater Mackinaw City Area through exhibits, education, activities and performances. Providing art related experiences for our youth is a high priority. Partnerships are key to the success of MCAAC programs. Most projects involve the Mackinaw City Public Schools, Mackinaw Area Public Library, Mackinaw Area Historical Society, Mackinaw Woman’s Club, and local businesses either directly or indirectly. All programs of MCAAC are supported by a grant from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs.



Art show was October 2018 at Wawatam Senior Center hosted by MCAAC board member Stephen Smith.

Photography and Drawing Arts, Painting Arts in
( Acrylic, Oil, Pastel, Pencil, Watercolor )
Fiber Arts, Glass Arts, Metal Arts,
Paper Arts and Wood Arts


Bridge, Barracks and BBQ


A lively Evening of Community Fun took place on August 26, 2018, including Bridge Views, Local BBQ and Brews Tasting Stations, Barracks Tours and Interpreters, Live Music and Entertainers, Games and Demonstrations. Event took place at Fort Michilimackinac, 102 West Straits Avenue, Mackinaw City.  Visitor’s Center entrance located under the bridge was used.
Three entertainment locations within the park along with four food and beverage locations. Cost is $25 per person. This event was for adults only! August 26, 2018 from 7:00 to 10:00pm  For more information contact us at 231-412-2787 No preregistration is required.

Evening with Photography Trainer Bob Grzesiak


Mackinaw City Area Arts Council presented an evening with photography trainer Bob Grzesiak,  July 12, 2018 from 7-9pm at Mackinaw Woman’s Club at 310 Jamet St. Mackinaw City, Mi.
Bob Grzesiak (Gree-shack) began his career in photography as a way out of his high school journalism class. It worked.
Covering the 1972 election photographing Ed Muskie, George McGovern and Thomas Eagleton  as they campaigned through Saginaw peaked his interest photography as a communication medium.
 From Regional Manager of Fotomat-Quarry Camera stores to General Manager of Linn’s Camera and Saginaw Photo Supply for over 20 years he became the Midwest Technical Representative for Fuji Film Professional Products for digital cameras, film, color paper and lab equipment for 20 years

Most recently he conducted Eco-Photo Tours through his company, Great Lakes Photo Tours, encouraging environmental support and appreciation through photography.
His approach is simple; know your camera’s abilities and short-comings and the settings and tools that allow you to “create images in your brain and camera” rather than “fixing images in your computer.” He reminds us we don’t “photograph things”, rather, we “record how light falls on selected subjects.”  That awareness can make or break your images.
The evening discussion included: A Camera’s View on Photographing Nature

Bob discusses how to recognize your camera’s strengths and weaknesses for nature photography and tools to assist you as you photograph, from gear and exposure to light control and composition in the field.
After the lecture we opened up for question and answers. The attendees toke advantage of Bob’s passion for the technical. This was a rewarding evening for anyone who’s interest lies in improving their photo work. Class was $10 at the door, no prior registration required.





Artwork of St. Anthony’s of Padua

We met the local artists and explored the artwork of St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church on a tour guided by Sister Chris Herald on Sunday June 24, 2018 at 2:00 pm. A reception in the conference room followed the tour. This was a free event.

Intro to Water Color with Mary Lou Peters


A new class  added to Mary Lou Peters’ fall teaching schedule: Introduction to Watercolor Painting in Mackinaw City on Tuesday, September 25 from 7-9 p.m. at the Mackinaw City Women’s Club building at 301 E. Jamet Street. Cost is $10 and we painted a zinnia. All skill levels were welcome and all supplies were furnished. Call 231-412-2787 or email email hidden; JavaScript is required to register.





Gemini Twins

GEMINI, twin brother musicians, performed “A Musical Celebration for Children and the Whole Family on Friday September 28, 2018 at Church of the Straits, 307 N. Huron Street, Mackinaw City from  7pm to 8pm.    The concert featured Gemini’s uncannily matched voices, their up-beat flair for sparking audience participation, a stage full of instruments and award-winning songs which captured the warmth and humor of family life.  Bring the whole family for this one. For information call 231-412-2787

There was an afternoon school assembly the same day from 2:00pm to 2:45pm.

Born in Budapest, Hungary in 1949, the twin brothers emigrated with their parents after the 1956 Revolution and lived in Israel for three years before moving to the United States.  Living in several countries as they were growing up gave San and Laz a chance to see and appreciate many different ways of life, as well as exposing them to the music and instruments of various cultures.  They grew up hearing a rick variety of music at home.  Their father, a fine singer and a Cantor in the synagogue, taught them everything from religious music and Italian opera, to Hungarian and Yiddish fold songs.  Their mother, though not a musician, nevertheless had a powerful impact on their choice of careers.  “The music comes from our father,” the brothers say, “but whatever it takes to get up in front of an audience and put a song across, that comes from our mother’s spirit.”



Johnathan Rand “Michigan Chiller” Author

This workshop has been completed.

Under the pen names of Johnathan Rand and Christopher Knight, Wright has written over 60 books, with over 4 million in print!  As Johnathon Rand , he has authored over 90 books and hundreds of magazine articles and short stories.  He is best known for the Michigan CHILLER series.

On Monday September 10, 2018, popular author Christopher Wright visited the Mackinaw City Public Schools.  He did a lively presentation in the multi-purpose room for all students in grades 1-6 at 1:30 to 2:30pm.  At 3:00, he conducted a creative writing workshop for students in grades 4-12. After the workshop we asked workshop participants to submit their original compositions/stories to a panel of arts council members who judged the work and will award 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes.  The first prize winner had their piece published in the Mackinaw (on line) Newsletter by Sandy Planisek.

Children’s Arts and Craft Summer Workshops



These workshops have been completed for Summer of 2018






The DIA Inside/Out Program comes to Mackinaw City

The DIA Inside/Out program has come to town. The Village of Mackinaw City (through MCAAC) has been awarded three reproductions that were installed on May 16th 2018 and will remain in place until October 2018.
The three locations selected for the reproductions are WaWatam Park, Conkling Heritage Park (on the west side of the Performance Shell), and Veterans Memorial Park(Marina Lawn) as the installation sites.

The pieces include:

Bank of the Oise                                                                The Sinfonia                                                       Asafo Flag

Vincent Van Gough                                                           Michiel VonMusscher                                    Unknown Artist Yorba

Veterans Memorial Park                                                  Conkling Heritage Park                                  Wawatam Park