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Replica of the schooner Madeline was toured by Festival-goers in September 1999
This replica of the schooner Madeline was toured by Victorian Port City Festival goers in September 1999. Photo: Lisa Annable

Victorian Port City Festival

This September festival celebrates the historic aspects of Manistee, which was a lumbering town in the mid 1800s to early 1900s.

The 1999 festival kicked off with a high tea and Victorian hat display. Citizens wearing Victorian attire created a promenade, and many of the town's Victorian houses were open for tours. The weekend event also featured a "vintage" baseball tournament, following rules and formality of a bygone era. Other attractions included an antique and classic car show, demonstrations of traditional skills by artisans, outdoor cafes with international food, an arts and crafts fair, and a scenic river walk. Manistee's role as a port city was also highlighted during the festival. A replica of the 1845 schooner, Madeline, docked at the town, and provided tours.

The Manistee area has many talented musicians and singers, who provided entertainment at the 1999 festival. They were singing groups, The Duffs and Free Spirit; a one-man show by Duane Moore; the Ken Hawkins Polka Band; the Ragtime Ensemble; and Oro Latino. The Scottville Clown Band, whose members wore wild costumes, drew huge crowds as they played marches, university fight songs, and patriotic numbers.

A special feature of the 1999 festival was the replica of the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C. People from around Michigan visited the wall to look for names of relatives or friends. The memorial's location on Lake Michigan beach provided a beautiful and serene setting to commemorate America's soldiers.

Documentation includes a project report, brochures, a video and photograph.

Originally submitted by: Peter Hoekstra, Representative (2nd District).



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The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.

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