|West Branch is a quaint little city nestled between Ogemaw & West Branch Townships. The City is home to just over 2,000 residents and is a little over 1 square mile in size. Easily accessible, the West Branch area is conveniently located off Interstate 75 with on/off ramps (exits 212 & 215) at each end of town. Additionally, we are the hub to both state highways M-30 & M-76; with state highway M-55 passing right through the center of town.
West Branch has much to offer to all who visit. Enjoy unique shopping in Downtown Victorian, or just a relaxing stroll down the tree-laced mainstreet. Cinema 3 offers the most current family friendly Box Office hits for all to enjoy with an attached ice cream shop serving old-fashioned hand-dipped cones & sundaes. If your preference is soft-serve, we got you covered with the DQ on the west end of town. West Branch has many dining options as well ranging from family restaurants & pubs all the way to fine dining.
|New in 2014, the DDA added public restrooms to the downtown area which are located in the elegant Downtown Victorian Park.; the park is a perfect location for a family/group photo op as it houses a magnificent fountain that serves as the city's new centerpiece.
If your looking for a park with a little more action, you can take the West Branch Riverwalk from downtown right into beautiful Irons Park. Irons Park offers a peaceful scenic view of the river with scattered park benches & gazebos. Other features in the park are public restrooms/warming house & the historic covered bridge. Amenities include a volleyball court, tennis courts, basketball courts and is home to Fort Austin which is a massive play structure that children of all ages will surely enjoy. Irons Park also serves host to many weddings, parties & picnics. It is the home of special events such as "Relay for Life", "Mutt March", the Optimist Clubs annual "Easter Egg Hunt" & the Tolfree Foundation "Duck Races", "Music in the Park" every Thursday evening throughout the summer, and one of Michigan's largest annual craft shows the "Victorian Art Fair" held the second weekend of August. In the winter months you can enjoy "Family Fun Night" with music, food & snow sculpting. The basketball courts are converted to an ice skating rink and the park renders the best sledding hill within city limits. All events within the park are open to the public and free of charge.
|Wait! We've got more... Downtown Victorian also hosts an abundance of events as well. The Wine Tasting Room within the Silver Lining (offering local wines) is a stop on the "Sunrise Side Wine & Hops Trail"; they along with the other downtown merchants feature two Wine Walks annually, spring & winter. This is an excellent opportunity to try the huge selection of local wines, socializing with friends and business owners while also taste testing a wide variety of appetizers from the local eateries. If your looking for something a little more family friendly, then let us invite you to one of our holiday parades (Memorial Day, 4th of July & Christmas). Visit Mr. & Mrs. Clause during "Christmas Fantasy" and take a horse drawn carriage ride down maintstreet; or join us on New Years Eve for the annual "Ball Drop" in the center of town. More of a summer person? Come down and check out the rods & relics during the infamous "Back to the Bricks" tour. That's right...West Branch is one of the newly rotating stops on their annual tour.
Lets not stop there. Every Friday night from the end of June through August, you and your party can enjoy "Fabulous Friday's". This weekly summer event was created specifically to mock the social life of town folk from years past. Before the automobile, a trip to town was an adventure all its own due to the amount of time it would consume from working in the fields. Each Friday, the farmers and lumberjacks would pack their families into the carriage or wagon and make the journey into town. The women would do the shopping, kids would connect with the other community children and play, while the men would visit the barber, meet up with their neighboring farmers at the pub, or treat the family to a meal out. It was a night on the town for the entire family. Fabulous Friday's is just that with a twist. While we invite one and all to gather downtown to conduct their business and socialize, we also take this time to pay tribute and respect to those that have brought us to where we are today. Each Friday is themed with no duplicates throughout the summer. One week may be a dedication to the abundance of agriculture serving our community, while another may be tribute to the police, fire and servicemen that protect and have protected our fair city. We show our respect for the bikers each year during the Ogemaw Hills Bike Week, as well as show off the talents of our community with an art walk and an annual vocal competition.
|If you prefer to spend your time in the great outdoors, Ogemaw County and the West Branch Area offer a variety of ORV trails, Hiking paths, and a multitude of lakes where you can enjoy fishing, boating or any other water sport your heart desires. When the season comes, we also have an abundance of thick woods and forests for all the hunting enthusiasts.
West Branch is beginning to make its name as a destination stop in northern Michigan, offering family friendly fun for everyone. Next time you, your family, or group of friends go out exploring what northern Michigan has to offer... plan on stopping by West Branch. Whether it be a week, the weekend, or just for the day, we would love to have you! You will know when you get here...just look for the "Smiley" tower.
|Information and schedule of all of our community events can be found on our Home page under the "Calendar of Events" quick link.|