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Other traditional music and dance events 

As we learn of other traditional-music events in our area, we’ll post them here, starting with jam sessions and scrolling down to concerts and other festivals. We hope you will find something you enjoy, and we especially hope you will patronize the businesses that host jam sessions, sponsor concerts and otherwise support traditional music!

Some jam sessions stop during the summer. We’ve made note of all the summer breaks we know about, but please call and check before you go.


2017 Wheatland Summer Music Camp

June 18-24, 2017
Tuition $500, which includes all lessons, activities, 3 meals a day plus an evening snack, camping with generators welcome and some electrical hook-ups available, shower facilities
Register at


Other traditional, acoustic jam sessions

We keep these listings as current as we can, but you should call ahead before you drive a distance to one of these jams, because hours may change, etc.

Sunday Acoustic Jam in Marquette at Donckers

The Sunday acoustic jam in Marquette at Donckers soda and candy shop, 137 W. Washington in Marquette. 2-5 p.m., Sundays. Thanks to Donckers and to all the places that have hosted this jam in the past several years!

Fun Fact: President Obama visited Marquette on February 10, 2011, and he ate lunch at Donckers and bought chocolates for his daughters. So come to a jam and walk in the footsteps of the President!

Also, congratulations to Donckers, winner of the 2011 Arts Business Honor Roll Award from the Marquette Arts and Culture Center. The accolade recognized a business that has recognized excellence in the arts by supporting artists or arts organizations in its community.

The Sweetwater Cafe

The Sweetwater Cafe at 517 N. Third in Marquette hosts an acoustic jam session Thursday evenings from 6-ish to 9 p.m. Thanks to Sean, Ursula and the Sweetwater staff for supporting traditional music!

Sweet Water Cafe was featured on the public radio program “The Splendid Table,” on Sunday, April 1. In Marquette, the shows airs at 10 a.m. (Eastern) on WNMU-FM, on air and streaming internet. “The Splendid Table” is radio’s preeminent food program, airing on more than 300 public radio stations in the United States, including WNMU, Public Radio 90, plus SIRIUS satellite radio and World Radio Switzerland.

Sweetwater Cafe has recently been highlighted and praised by Michael Stern, nationally known food writer and regular contributor to National Public Radio. Stern described Sweetwater as “A restaurant, bakery, and bar with an elevated consciousness, Sweetwater Cafe serves exemplary food that is locally-sourced and made from scratch. Breakfast is notably good, as is the evening’s various ways with Lake Superior whitefish.” To see the whole review, click here. Congratulations, Sweetwater!

Marquette Community Traditional Jams

Marquette Community Traditional Jams at the Peter White Public Library in the Community Room of PWPL, 217 N. Front St. in Marquette. Co-sponsored by Hiawatha and PWPL. Join other acoustic musicians for a community jam of traditional folk music. Bring your guitar, fiddle, banjo, dulcimer, bass, or voice to play and sing great tunes by Peter, Paul and Mary, the Carter Family, Woody Guthrie, Bob Dylan and others. A limited quantity of sheet music will be available for use for those not familiar with the songs. This is not a performance but an informal gathering for people interested in playing or singing with others who enjoy traditional acoustic music. Listeners are always welcome. No admission charge, donations welcome. Continued thanks to Margaret Boyle and the PWPL staff for supporting traditional, acoustic music!  Monthly jam sessions at the library are held on the second or third Saturday of the month, depending on space availability, from 2:00-5:00 pm September through May. There is no admission charge to attend the event which is sponsored by the Hiawatha Music Co-op and the Peter White Public Library. Call 906-226-4318 or visit for more information.

Second Sunday jam

Second Sunday jam before each Second Sunday Folk Dance. The new Second Sunday season will start in Fall 2016. Watch this spot, or the Second Sunday website for the 2016-2017 line-up.

Each Folk Dance afternoon starts with a free acoustic jam session from 1 to 3 p.m., (Central). The concert begins at 4 p.m. (Central), with White Water and the featured artists. Each Fortune Lake winter concert is followed by light refreshments and a dance. Jams are free; concert admission is $7, free for those under age 15. Please scroll down to the concert section for the performer line-up. The Fortune Lake Camp is located between Iron River and Crystal Falls (in Iron County, Michigan), two miles west of Crystal Falls on US-2. South on Bible Camp Road, right on Fortune Lake Camp Road. 906-822-7889 or

Celtic Music Sessions

Celtic Music Sessions at 6:30 pm every first Sunday at the Evergreen Heights Apartments, 1820 Mary’s Way, Kingsford, Mich. (near the Police station and next to Bianco’s Fitness Center) and at 5:30 pm every third Thursday of the month at the Dickinson County Library, 401 E. Iron Mountain St., Iron Mountain, MI (corner of East A St. and Iron Mountain St.). For more information, call 906-396-8697 or google “Menominee River Celtic Session Group”.

NOTE: Bennett’s Roadhouse is no longer in business.

Bluegrass Jam

Bluegrass Jam, 7 p.m., Thursdays, Thunder Bay Inn, Big Bay, Mich. 906-345-9220. As always, open mike.

Ishpeming Jam

Ishpeming Jam -the third Saturday jam session at the Ishpeming Carnegie Library from 2 to 4 pm. The library is located at 317 N Main Street; the jam session is held in the Leverton Room, lower level.

Questions? Contact Jim Janofski at (906) 486 4536 or


Traditional Concerts, Festivals and Dances

The Dance Zone

The Dance Zone, 1113 Lincoln Avenue in Marquette (corner of College and Lincoln), will present the following Traditional Dances Events. The Dance Zone presents many types of dance, but we’re highlighting traditional dance here. Check the Dance Zone website for all opportunities.

Contra and Old-Time Square Dances Dance to the traditional sounds of All Strings Considered or just come and listen to the music. 7:30-10:00 PM Monthly dances on Fridays- Donations accepted to help defray cost of the band and the refreshments.

Falling Rock Cafe and Bookstore

Live music every Saturday night unless announced otherwise. Suggested admission: $5 adults, $1 child, $20 family. 104 E. Munising Ave., Munising, Mich. 906-387-3008. Shows begin at 7 p.m., unless otherwise noted.

Old Time Music Jam

In conjunction with Game Night, every Wednesday from 7:00-9:00p, we’ll be taking you back to the old time music jam. Treat yourself to some nostalgia and enjoy a relaxing evening of games and familiar tunes

Second Sunday Folk Dance

It will be another wonderful set of concerts in fall and winter of 2016-2017. Thanks to Bette and Dean Premo for this gem of the U.P. traditional-music year.

Each Folk Dance afternoon starts with an acoustic jam session from 1 to 3 p.m., (Central). The concert begins at 4 p.m. (Central), with White Water and the featured artists. Each Fortune Lake winter concert is followed by light refreshments and a dance. Concert admission is $7, free for those under age 15.

The Fortune Lake Camp is located between Iron River and Crystal Falls (in Iron County, Michigan), two miles west of Crystal Falls on US-2. South on Bible Camp Road, right on Fortune Lake Camp Road. 906-822-7889 or

Lake Effect Community Arts, Manistique is starting a new Traditional Dance Series in Schoolcraft County

Community Contra Dances in Cooks

Lake Effect Community Arts sponsors an Old-time Community Contra dance twice a month in Cooks at the Inwood Township Hall, from September through May, 7:00-9:00 pm, with live music and caller Sue Robishaw. New dancers are welcome! Cost is $7 plus potluck snack. See the website for dates and more info:, or call 906-644-2598, or email

Marquette Area Blues Festival

Labor Day Weekend, Mattson Lower Harbor Park in Marquette. 906-226-7658.