International students studying in Michigan might find a little taste of home in Frankenmuth, Michigan’s Little Bavaria.
Founded in 1845, Frankenmuth was settled by 13 conservative Lutherans immigrants from Franconia, now Bavaria,Germany after a German missionary named Frederick Wyneken wrote an appeal to Lutherans in Germany about the lack of pastors, churches and schools in Indiana, Ohio and Michigan.
Frankenmuth’s Bavarian-themed town draws over three million tourists annually who taste Bavarian sausages, beer from Munichand sauerkraut bread at Zehnder’s Restaurant and browse through over 50,000 gifts and trims at the world’s largest Christmas store, Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland.
Take a ride on the Bavarian Belle, a stern driven paddlewheel riverboat. Tours are one hour and offer a historical narration to its 150 passenger cruises.
There are numerous festivals in Frankenmuth that international students studying in Michigan would enjoy. During summer break go to Frankenmuth’s Bavarian Festival. Play games and shop vendors while German bands dressed in traditional garb play music. Make sure to get a good spot to watch the festival’s two parades while sipping on a German beer.
With the changing autumn leaves in the fall semester comes Oktoberfest. In 1996, Lord Mayor Christian Ude of Germany officially sanctioned the Frankenmuth Oktoberfest celebration, making it the only city outside of Munich to receive such an honor, according to the festival’s website. Frankenmuth then became the first city in the U.S. to import Hofbrauhaus beer, a brewery in Munich.
Going along with every college kid’s favorite theme, beer, gear up in the spring semester for the World Expo of Beer, which is Michigan’s largest international beer sampling event. Admission is for those who are 21 and up and you get a free souvenir mug.