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How to make the most of your gameday experience at Michigan

Spending a weekend in Ann Arbor? Here are some things to keep you busy.

Drone Photos of North American Sport Stadiums Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

Football season is in full swing, the weather is getting crisper across the Midwest, and it’s simply a magical time to head to the city of Ann Arbor, home of the University of Michigan.

Here’s a look at where to eat, what to do, and what I’d tell people about Ann Arbor.

Where to eat

It’s hard containing this list to just a handful of places because Ann Arbor has a plethora of incredible dining options, but here are a few places where you simply can’t go wrong.

Zingerman’s Delicatessen

Zingerman’s is the quintessential spot to grab a bite in Ann Arbor. Once you take a trip to the city, folks will undoubtedly be asking if you stopped by Zingerman’s for one of their huge sandwiches. Pastrami, beef, chicken, turkey, vegetarian, Zingerman’s has you covered. While this isn’t the cheapest option, with most sandwiches hovering a little under $20, you’ll be full the rest of the day.

Joe’s Pizza NYC

Ann Arbor happens to have a pizza spot that sells big New York Style pizza by the slice. Sure, you can get a full pie, but most people waiting in what can become a long line are there to just grab a couple gargantuan slices at an affordable price. Joe’s Pizza NYC is as authentic as it gets. Founded by Joe Pozzuoli, originally from Naples, Italy (the birthplace of pizza), Joe’s NYC has five locations in New York, one in Florida, and luckily one in Ann Arbor. Joe’s is also one of the best late-night spots in the city, open to 3 AM most nights.

What to do


The University of Michigan is home to some of the best museums in the country. There are 12 museums across campus ranging from art, archaeology, natural history, astronomy, and more. To read about the 12 museums, Click Here.

Kayak the Huron River

Whether you decide to kayak the beautiful Huron River, or just opt to hike the great nature trails along the river, Gallup Park in Ann Arbor is a beautiful spot in the spring, summer, and fall. The park is great for families, has a concession stand, and you’re bound to see some cool birds, swans, and other wildlife along the river.

Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum

The area is massive, with great hiking trails along with a conservatory, garden store, and lobby. The botanical gardens include outdoor display gardens, a children’s garden, a 10,000+ square-foot conservatory, and much more. Admission is free.

Catch a movie at the State Theatre or Michigan Theater

The State Theatre, which opened in 1942, has an Art-Deco design, vibrant red and green neon marquee, and is a great sight on State Street whether you head in for a movie or simply walk right on by.

The Michigan Theater opened a bit earlier in 1928 and mixes live events with showings of new and old films. Both theaters are owned by the same company and have been renovated in recent years, The Michigan Theater and State Theatre both show new movies as well as independent films, classics, cult films, and lots of late-night shows.

What I tell people about Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor is arguably the finest and most unique city in the Midwest. Not only that, but the University of Michigan also has a beautiful campus which takes up a big portion of the city, which makes Ann Arbor all the more fun to walk around. Wandering around aimlessly without a plan can ultimately be the best course of action. Quadrants of downtown such as Main Street, State Street, and South University Ave (South U) all have different vibes, all have something to offer. Eats, drinks, or shopping, the city has you covered.

There are gameday tailgates, and a diverse set of welcoming people from different generations and cultures. Many people come to Ann Arbor for the first time and leave with a lasting impression of the city that is abundantly positive. Once you spend a little time in Ann Arbor, you’ll surely want to come back time and time again. Even Ohio State fans agree with this.