DEARBORN – Families looking to have fun without breaking the bank can find plenty to do at Dearborn’s Homecoming festival Aug. 5 to 7, including carnival rides, children’s games, wacky contests, art activities, inflatable rides and live entertainment all weekend long.
Fireworks displays on Saturday and Sunday nights cap off these fun-filled days.
A tradition for 37 years, Homecoming is coordinated by the city of Dearborn and the nonprofit Dearborn Community Fund. This year’s presenting sponsor is Beaumont Health. The festival is at Ford Field Park, 22051 Cherry Hill Road, two blocks north of Michigan Avenue on Brady Street.
Admission is free and includes entertainment ranging from nationally known musical performers to magicians, clowns and stilt walkers.
Visitors to Homecoming also can enjoy two dozen carnival rides all three days from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. New this year is the Super Cyclone Coaster.
Wade Shows Inc., the carnival operator, is offering two discount carnival pass options only to those who purchase online by 11:55 p.m. Aug. 4 at www.cityofdearborn.org/homecoming.
The three-day Mega Pass offers unlimited rides for $40 plus a $1 service fee. The all-day wristband costs $14, plus a $1 service fee if purchased online by the deadline. The wristbands allow one day of riding for all carnival attractions and can be used on any day, Friday to Sunday.
Wristbands also can be purchased on site during the carnival for $15 for a half-day band (11 a.m. to 5 p.m.) and $22 for a full day (11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.)
A $10 companion wristband is available for parents to ride with their young children (restrictions apply). Individual tickets also can be purchased at Homecoming.
No refunds are offered for carnival ride tickets, wristbands or the Mega Pass. Consider the weather forecast before buying.
New this year at Homecoming, Healthy Dearborn is offering a free Family Bike Ride. The police-supported ride will start at 10 a.m. Aug. 6 on Monroe Street on the south side of the festival grounds. The seven-mile ride will wend through northwest Dearborn neighborhoods. A mid-point break with snack and safe biking information will be provided at Levagood Park.
The bike ride is free. Registration begins at 9:30 a.m. Aug. 6, but waiver forms can be found at www.cityofdearborn.org/homecoming and printed and completed in advance. Helmets are required, and all riders age 12 or younger must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.
Numerous other free or low-cost activities are also available at Homecoming.
• Free giant inflatables for bouncing from noon to 8 p.m. Aug. 6 and 7, sponsored by Nickel & Saph Inc.
• Free children’s games with small prizes offered by the Recreation and Parks Department from noon to 5 p.m. Aug. 6 and 7.
• Free wacky contests like the hula hoop, baseball throwing and kick the shoe, for children of all ages Aug. 6 and 7.
• Returning this year, the Cool Treat Social, sponsored by Yogurtown, will provide guests a free frozen treat from 7 to 9 p.m. Aug. 5 (or while supplies last) in the Dining Tent.
• Children can participate in several free “make and take” art activities Aug. 6 and 7, such as a craft with volunteers from the Arab American National Museum or working with brushes and colors in the Dearborn Community Arts Council’s Paint a Picture Spot. Both take place in the Hilltop Art & Activities Area sponsored by Henry Ford Health System.
• The Rotary Club of Dearborn again offers a free Children’s Fishing Derby at the Ford Field Pond from 8 to 11 a.m. Aug. 6.
• A free all-levels yoga session will be offered from 10 to 11 a.m. Aug. 6 in the Hilltop area. Participants provide their own mat and towel. The lesson is offered by Yoga Shala and Wellness Center.
• Families can enjoy free “Paddling on the Pond” in kayaks or canoes from noon to 8 p.m. Aug. 6, sponsored by Heavner Canoeing.
• Home Depot Dearborn will offer its free Kids Wood Workshop from noon to 2 p.m. Aug. 7 at the Hilltop area.
• Families can participate in a 1-mile family fun run or 5K Aug. 7 starting from the Brady Street entrance. The family fun run starts at 7:45 a.m., and registration is $15 before July 31 or $20 through race day. The 5K starts at 8 a.m. and registration is $32 through July 31 and $35 through race day. All registered runners will get a T-shirt for this inaugural event. 5K runners will get a commemorative glass and recognition for the top finishers in various categories.
For more information about Homecoming, go to www.cityofdearborn.org/homecoming.