The Empire Asparagus Festival— once lovingly dubbed one of the world’s weirdest festivals by—returns for its 20th year on June 3. The fête includes local asparagus eats, great music, and fun activities for all generations. Read the story for the full lineup.

Thousands of visitors flock to Leelanau County each year, many of them attracted by big draws such as the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. But while nothing compares to the delight of bounding down the Dune Climb after a sweaty trek uphill, or taking in the pristine view of the Manitou Islands from a sugar sand beach, there are plenty of lesser-known places in the county to have fun, too. Two of these places are sister communities Maple City and Cedar.

When a line forms in front of the window at Cedar’s corner ice cream stand, summer isn’t far behind. (Let’s hope it orders a Blue Moon, not a Flurry.) It’s mid-June, and the shelves and kitchen cupboards of local businesses hold some surprises. The Sun caught up with some owners and managers and asked them to share what’s new. Their replies might whet your appetite and kickstart your summer shopping.