The 14th annual Clinton Township Festival of the Senses is set to Sept. 25-26. It celebrates many artistic mediums and features over 100 artists and specialty food vendors.

The 14th annual Clinton Township Festival of the Senses is set to Sept. 25-26. It celebrates many artistic mediums and features over 100 artists and specialty food vendors.

File photo by Patricia O’Blenes

Festival of the Senses returns to Clinton Township

By: Alex Szwarc | Fraser - Clinton Township Chronicle | Published September 8, 2021


CLINTON TOWNSHIP — After a one-year hiatus, the Festival of the Senses is back.

This year’s two-day art festival is scheduled for Sept. 25-26. The 14th annual festival happens on the grounds of the Clinton Township Civic Center, at 40700 Romeo Plank Road.

It celebrates many mediums and features over 100 artists and specialty food vendors, as well as performances by local entertainers.

Festival hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.

Tami Letcavage, Clinton Township Recreation assistant director, said with the department’s planning cycle, it just wasn’t possible to put a festival together in 2020.

“It’s something that from all angles — our vendors, artists and different community organizations — are excited to be there and show you everything they are great at,” she said. “It’s a great time to see the best of what they do.”   

The festival is put on by the entire department, with Letcavage overseeing much of the coordination for artists.

“It’s one of our large-scale events,” she said. “This event coordinates with township committees, community organizations, and businesses, artists and food trucks. We try to grow it so it is a full community event for everyone.”

Letcavage said this year’s theme to help design artwork for the event is “all senses lead to the heart, with ‘art’ in bold.”

She views the festival as a big welcome-back party for artists and vendors that the township hasn’t seen since 2019.

While a majority of artists are returning to the festival, Letcavage said there are more new vendors set to come out this year than before.

“I think a lot of people found ways to turn their crafts and hobbies into a business and narrowed in on this,” she said. “Newer vendors have a couple years of shows under their belts where it’s not new to them, but they’re new to us at this location.”

Pierre Kamel is a candle and soap maker. This will be the fourth time he is setting up shop at the festival.

Kamel owns Petoskey and Pine, an aromatherapy company he operates from his Warren home.

“We make hand-crafted soaps, soy candles and a lot of aromatherapy products,” he said. “Most of what we do is interaction with people, so we’re happy to be back.”

Kamel added that folks need the full experience, above and beyond just selling a product.

“A festival like this is super important because it brings up-and-comers and small businesses together,” he said. “It helps the local community so they can see all the businesses.”

A majority of festival vendors are artists, but others, like representatives from the Clinton Township Historic Village and Clinton Township Arboretum, attend.

Letcavage said the historical committee runs activities and games and does tours of the log cabin and Moravian Hall.

Primarily an art fair, the festival offers an entertainment stage, children’s activities and the presence of community groups. Some entertainment includes performances from Manda’s Rhythm & Dance and Encore The Dance Centre.

The festival coincides with Macomb County’s Meet me on the Trail Day activities on  Sept. 25.

Letcavage said she hopes that the trail day will bring in a new group of people to the festival, as well, in addition to utilizing some of the township’s trail systems. The Detroit Institute of Arts’ Inside|Out program will have seven different art pieces on the grounds of the Civic Center.

“We try to listen to different community groups and see what they like and what we can bring to it to make it a more complete event and give representation to all the great things in the township,” she said. “We celebrate in all of its forms.”

Some food vendors include Motown Soup, Luv’s Lemonade, Paul’s Gourmet Jerky and Motor City Sweet Treats. A few food trucks will be on site.

Parking is limited, and a shuttle service will take people to and from Erie Elementary, at 42276 Romeo Plank Road.

In the coming weeks, people are encouraged to check Clinton Township Parks and Recreation on Facebook for a full entertainment schedule.