4 things to do in Detroit while you’re here for Automate

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The Automate Show is done for the day. You’ve just witnessed hundreds of exciting automation solutions on the show floor and heard from some of the industry’s best and brightest. Now it’s time to see all the amazing things Detroit has to offer. 

From museums and restaurants to parks and more, there’s something for everyone in the Motor City. Here are a few activities to consider adding to your trip.

1. Eat like a local.

When you’re looking for a bite to eat after a successful day on the show floor, there are several delicious dining options located throughout the Detroit area, including many new in 2023

Here are a few of our local favorites for snacks and drinks: 

  • Bad Luck Bar – An intimate setting serving up memorable cocktails made with unusual ingredients.
  • Buddy's Pizza – Birthplace of Detroit’s famous square-cut pizza. 
  • Cliff Bell’s – A unique experience that will transport you to a 1930s dining club, complete with live jazz music.
  • Dakota Inn – Classic German food with a Detroit twist.
  • Detroit Beer Company – Brewpub featuring a selection of beers, as well as hearty pub grub.
  • The Monarch Club – A rooftop hideaway located in the penthouse of the Metropolitan Building in downtown Detroit.
  • Sindbad’s – Fresh seafood on the water at a restaurant in operation since 1949.
  • The Sugar House – Craft cocktail bar with a seasonal rotating menu. 
  • Slow's BBQ – World-renowned barbecue joint and home of the Yardbird, one of Adam Richman’s contenders for best sandwich in America.
  • Two James Distillery – A craft distillery located in the hip Corktown district.

2. Explore and discover. 

Detroit is home to several sprawling museums, including the Detroit Institute of Arts. Boasting one of the largest and most significant art collections in the United States (including original prints from Vincent Van Gogh and Pablo Picasso and murals by Diego Rivera), it’s no surprise it was named this year’s best art museum nationwide. For a look at the city’s past and present through permanent and temporary exhibits, check out the Detroit Historical Museum.

If you didn’t get enough machinery during the Automate Show, be sure to stop by Marvin's Marvelous Mechanical Museum to see a plethora of pieces of mechanical history. And the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History holds the world’s largest permanent collection of African American culture, with more than 35,000 artifacts on site. Jazzheads should drop by Baker's Keyboard Lounge, Detroit’s oldest still-operating jazz club. Finally, if you’re a fan of Motown, you can’t miss the Motown Museum for a look at Motown’s legacy in Detroit and around the world.

3. Spend time outside.

Spring is in the air! It’s going to be a beautiful May 2023 in Detroit with plenty of warm days and cool breezes. If you’re craving fresh air after the show, there are several options available. 

Zip through the city on a rental scooter. Walk, run or bike along the Detroit Riverfront, a 5.5-mile stretch of beautiful river views and lush greenery. Or spend an afternoon in Belle Isle Park, an island surrounded by the Detroit River that is home to the Belle Isle Aquarium and the Belle Isle Nature Center. 

Planning to stay for the weekend? Check out the Eastern market, one of the nation’s oldest urban farmer’s markets featuring 200+ vendors. You can also catch a Detroit Tigers game—they’ll be in town playing the Chicago White Sox from May 25–28. 

4. Brush up on your automotive history.

Love automobiles? There is a lot for you to see in the Motor City. The Automotive Hall of Fame is near Dearborn, Michigan. This celebrated destination highlights the accomplishments of individuals in the international motor vehicle industry and shares stories of how it has impacted society, pop culture and the world in general.

While in Dearborn, you can experience the life of a manufacturing legend at the Henry Ford Museum. Learn more about this automotive trailblazer and his significant contributions to the area. Start with the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation and Greenfield Village (where you can hitch a ride on a real Model T!). Then see Ford F-150s being built with automation at the Ford Rouge Factory Tour and check out documentaries on the Giant Screen.

Take a short trip to Grosse Pointe Shores, Michigan and you can enjoy dining, shopping and exploring at the historic Ford House, the former home of one-time Ford Motor Company President—and son of Henry Ford—Edsel Ford.

No matter what you’re looking for, you’re sure to find interesting and exciting opportunities in Detroit after Automate. Not registered for the show yet? Register FREE today—and get ready to accelerate your success in Detroit. 

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