Celebrate an accessible holiday with your family or group | Southwestern Michigan Tourist Council

Celebrate an accessible holiday with your family or group

Our area attractions are designed with accessibility in mind for fun without limits! Many people think of Southwest Michigan as a summer destination, but throughout the winter holidays and beyond, our charming towns put on a non-stop celebration of the season.

Wheelchair access at the Silver Beach Carousel.

Enjoy easy wheelchair access to indoor fun

The holidays are the perfect time to visit the Silver Beach Carousel. The Carousel House has extra sparkle with its festive decorations. Wide, level aisles make navigating easy with mobility-assisted devices such as walkers, canes and wheelchairs. And yes, you can ride the Carousel! The sea serpent chariot is designed with accessibility in mind. There is a wheelchair ramp available, and operators are pleased to assist you with step ladders or a helping hand.

During your ride, the band organ plays the happiest holiday music. If you or someone in your family needs sensory accommodations, request headphones or earplugs at the gate before boarding and enjoy a quieter ride.

Two other favorite destinations for entertaining your family or small groups in St. Joseph are the newly renovated Curious Kids’ Museum along the bluff downtown or the Curious Kids’ Discovery Zone below the bluff. Both are easily accessible using mobility-assisted devices: there is an elevator to reach the different levels at the multi-floor museum and ramps where needed to reach the hands-on exhibits.

A view of the lighthouse at sunset during a wind storm photo by Joshua Nowicki.

Access the wintry beauty of Lake Michigan

Our beaches are not just summer destinations. The holidays are a beautiful time to go! St. Joseph has three Lake Michigan beaches where you can park your vehicle and take in the incredible winter scenery. Silver Beach County Park and Lions Park Beach are on the south side of the river and Tiscornia Beach is across the river to the north. Tiscornia Beach boasts the iconic North Pier lighthouse. When it is encased in ice, the structure looks otherworldly — a rare view you won’t want to miss. The parking lot is a short distance along a paved path to the pier, and if it is cleared of snow and waves, and not icy you can venture out of your car. Bring a camera to capture the lighthouse and other natural ice formations at the other beaches.

Lake Bluff Park downtown is a magical place to park at dusk and take a rolling walk amid the holiday-themed light displays or to pause and watch one of our nightly showstopper sunsets. Lookout Park on Lakeshore Drive is another blufftop perch for lake and sunset watching from its wheelchair-accessible viewing platform.

A concert at the Acorn.

Arts and culture venues welcome mobility devices

All of our indoor venues for art, music and theater accommodate mobility-assisted devices, and many offer special seating, hearing assistance and nearby parking. To catch this year’s holiday-themed shows, check the schedules for:

Two people enjoying a meal at Silver Harbor.

Roll up to one of our dining tables

Our location at the crossroads between Chicago, Grand Rapids and Detroit attracts top foodie talent. Access to fresh produce from local farms inspires a creative spin on dishes at our unique restaurants. Among the many stellar wheelchair-accessible dining options in the region is Tabor Hill in Baroda. This winery and restaurant sits in the heart of Southwest Michigan’s wine country. In winter, cozy up to the roaring fireplace and enjoy the silence of the slumbering vineyard blanketed in white. Wine tasting and tours are available.

Rumbling tummies will appreciate the extensive menu at Silver Beach Pizza. This crowd-pleaser in St. Joseph serves up some of the best pizza, salads and appetizers in the region. Soak up the lively ambiance on a cold night. All ages will delight in watching trains right outside the window at this historic depot-turned-pizzeria. Extensions on the tables welcome wheelchairs. Very kid friendly and accommodating of all diets.

Enjoy river views through floor-to-ceiling windows at Clementine’s Too in St. Joseph. Featuring an extensive menu to please any taste, this eatery boasts great service in a large open space that accommodates wheelchairs and walkers. There is a kid’s menu, and the space is perfect for large groups.

Southwest Michigan has many more options for accessible dining. Also, follow the Maker’s Trail for inventive menus at our region’s renowned wineries, breweries, distilleries and cideries!

Stay with us this holiday!

Our hotels are accessible to mobility-assisted devices and offer many room and banquet and meeting space accommodations for everyone’s comfort. When you arrive, let staff know if you have any special requests. For a memory-making holiday in Southwest Michigan, book your hotel now.

Share with Us

Please send us photos and videos of your Southwest Michigan getaway. Use our hashtag #swmichigan or upload your photos to our CrowdRiff Collector below. This is an opportunity for your photos to appear on our social media, website or marketing materials. Thanks for sharing your memories!

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