MARSHALL, Mich. — The Ice, Wine, Beer and Blues Fest is set to return to downtown Marshall Feb. 4-5. The festival is a Marshall favorite, featuring specialty wine and beer tastings downtown on Friday night and a blues concert on Saturday at The Franke Center for the Arts, 214 E. Mansion St.
This year, the festival will again feature spectacular live ice carving by master sculptor John Merucci and his team. The theme for this year’s festival is “Winter Olympics” to honor the games which will be taking place this February.
“The Ice, Wine, Beer and Blues is one of Marshall’s great signature events,” said Jacob Gates, The Franke Center’s executive director. “When we last had this event in 2020, we had over 600 people participate, and we’re expecting a fun and successful event again this year. It’s always a good time!”
Ice carving will take place downtown from 5-8 p.m. on Friday and on Saturday from 10 a.m. until completion.
Friday’s wine and beer tasting will take place 6-10 p.m. at downtown business locations including The Mole Hole, The Green Scene, Living MI, Serendipity & The Brew Coffee Cafe, Pure Eden, State Street Pawfitters / Trailblazers, Handle & Hinge and Eastend Studio & Gallery. At each location, participants will receive a two ounce pour of wine or beer and delicious appetizers from local restaurants.
Individuals over 21 will be able to purchase a wristband at any location for $25 and receive 10 wine/beer tastings. This year tickets can also be purchased in advance online at thefranke.org and exchanged for a wristband on the night of the event at Handle & Hinge, Living MI or Eastend Studio.
Unique pottery goblets made by Eastend Gallery artist Eric Strader will be available for an additional $15 each. Goblets will also be for sale beginning on Wednesday, Feb. 1 at Oerthers.
All day Saturday, stroll the streets of downtown Marshall and admire the Olympics-inspired sculptures while completing some downtown shopping. The festival caps off on Saturday evening when The Franke Center for the Arts hosts a live blues concert featuring Matt Schofield. A pulled-pork dinner from Grand River Brewery will be available for $15.
Starting at 6 p.m., local musical favorites The Fat Animals will open the night in the Downstage Club. At 8 p.m., headliner Matt Schofield will take the main stage.
A member of the British Blues Hall of Fame, Schofield is considered one of the top British blues guitarists of all time, alongside icons like Eric Clapton and Peter Green. His performance is part of the Franke Center Blues Series.
Concert tickets will cost $28 if purchased in advance or $30 at the doors. Tickets can be purchased in advance online at thefranke.org or by calling the Franke Center for the Arts at 269-781-0001.
The festival would not be possible without sponsorships from Eaton, Oaklawn Hospital, Grand River Brewery, Hemmingsen Drugstore, Southern Michigan Bank and Trust, Highpoint Bank, Choose Marshall, Calhoun County Visitors Bureau, Sandy Woods State Farm, Marshall Eye Care, Townsquare Media and FireKeepers Casino Hotel.
Ice Wine Beer and Blues is a fundraiser for The Franke Center for the Arts and Choose Marshall.