Add These Waterfront Bars to Your South Haven Itinerary

Summertime in South Haven! During the summer, streets are filled with people of all ages, hands are filled with shopping bags, and bellies are full of good food and adult beverages. Nothing draws a crowd like the three, beautiful bars/restaurants that are located right on Black River.

The IdlerAdmiral Jack’s, and Captain Lou’s are the perfect spots to truly experience the summertime South Haven vibes. With amazing views, the best company, and drinks on the river, some could say we are one of the best small beach getaways, even for a day. While walking around town be sure to add all these riverfront bars to the agenda, and feel right at peace with twinkling tiki lights and music that is reminiscent of Margaritaville. The IdlerAdmiral Jack’s, and Captain Lou’s are some of the hottest spots in town, and are worth adding to the itinerary!

The Idler Riverboat & Dockside

First stop, the Idler. Nothing gets your day going more than a South Haven Iced Tea (S.H.I.T.), one of their signature drinks. The Idler is located conveniently downtown, so if your thirst needs to be quenched stop by and have a S.H.I.T or a Foxy Rum Punch to take a break, rest your feet, and enjoy the views the Idler has to offer. The Idler overlooks the Black River Channel, and if you are lucky enough to get a seat in the outskirts, you may even see glimpses of Lake Michigan. Something unique the Idler offers is the “shot ski” where you and three other friends can take a shot from a ski! Just be sure to have people with similar heights, otherwise you might wear the shot instead of drinking it.

Admiral Jack’s

Within walking distance, and right next door is Admiral Jack’s, settled right on the river. Jack’s, as it is known by the locals, is that escape you’ve been looking for in that little chunk of paradise. They are known for their tropical drinks, so you’ll have to try a Rum Runner. It has two bars, and plenty of space to enjoy the views of the Black River, and maybe even catch the sunset. Jack’s is unique in that it serves both the people on land and in the water, as they have a dock to park your dinghy! Before cruising Lake Michigan for the day, be sure to stop by to get some food and drink. Jack’s is the middle stop of the riverfront bars, so be sure to have some water with your adult beverages, and gear up for the second half.

Captain Lou’s

When it seems like the day is coming to an end and the sun goes down, be sure to check out Captain Lou’s for the nightlife scene, located right across the Dyckman Bridge. Lou’s serves ice cold drinks and food during the day, and becomes the hangout spot during the night. The two-bar set-up is the best place to watch all the boats come in for the evening. Lou’s is the best place to find yourself relaxing from the day in the sun, or the place to get the party started; accommodating both mindsets! The two bars include covered and uncovered seating, and plenty of space for dancing while live music echoes over the river. If the sun was a little too much for the day, relax in the shaded bar area and sip on something delicious! Or, if the night is just getting started, plan on dancing until your feet hurt. Lou’s might be your first or last stop of the day- either way Captain Lou’s is a must-visit while in South Haven.

So, when coming to South Haven on your next adventure, be sure to add these riverfront bars on the agenda. These small-town places have a lot to offer your vacation: drinks, food, memories, and maybe even some hangovers, but the stories will be told for years to come!

Silver Lake Summer Food Tour

No matter what your taste buds are after, Silver Lake offers a wide range of dining options to please every palate.

Choose from delicious local flavors, fresh-off-the-grill burgers and dogs, mouthwatering chicken wings and pizza, Mexican fare, and cold sweet treats for those late-night cravings — we’ve got everything!

Here’s a bit more about what to expect when dining in Silver Lake:

 A Wide Range of Choices

In the Silver Lake area, no two meals need be the same. Whether you’re traveling with the family, your sweetheart, or a group of friends, there’s something here for everyone.

Check out a smattering of vacationer favorites below:

Enjoying a day at the dunes on your ORV? Check out the Lighthouse Concessions Food Truck, which hangs out right at the state park or Duneland Diner, located within DuneLand Off-Road Center — the perfect place to grab a bite while picking up parts for your ATV.

  • Mexican Fare: Enjoy authentic Mexican cuisine in downtown Hart! Folks come from miles around to enjoy tacos, enchiladas, flautas, tostadas, burritos, and much more at both La Fiesta and La Probadita.

Locally-Sourced Ingredients

In Silver Lake, we are uniquely situated in the middle of the “Michigan Fruit Belt,” known for growing some of the nation’s most-prized fruits and other produce. Here, local foods are always available — whether at farmers’ markets or side-of-the-road produce stands or in area restaurants.

Want to try a “taste of Silver Lake”? Check out these establishments:

  • Woodland Farm Market and Bakery: Award-winning, made-from-scratch pies and baked goods, jams and jellies, maple syrup, and much more.
  • Country Dairy Market & Cafe: Fully-functioning dairy farm that makes their own ice cream, milk, and cheese. Their cafe menu is full of delicious sandwiches, wraps, soups, and pizzas.
  • Pleasant Valley Farms & Vineyard: Family-owned winery, featuring an array of farm-made wines (imported ingredients are never used!).

Dinner With Entertainment

Perfect for couples looking for a night on the town, several local establishments feature live music, entertainment, karaoke, and dancing on select nights of the week. Check out their event schedules below:

Food the Kids Will Love

Traveling with little ones? Silver Lake has a wide variety of kid-friendly dining options! Here are a few we recommend:

Local Hideaways

Interested in the little hideaways locals love when they dine out? Check out these must-visit establishments:

  • For Breakfast: Head to downtown Hart for an old-fashioned diner breakfast at The Pink Elephant Diner.
  • For Lunch: Try a “flight of soup” (or a sandwich or wrap) at the Soup of the Day Cafe in Hart — a great place to go for vegan and vegetarian options as well!
  • For Dinner: Enjoy a delicious sit-down dinner with a cozy atmosphere at the Open Hearth Grille & Bar in Mears.

So, is your mouth watering yet? Explore our complete listing of dining options on our Food & Drink page, and start planning your trip to Silver Lake today!

ThinkDunes|August 22nd, 2019

Find Your Sensory Feast at the South Haven Farm Market

Farm-to-table produce and meat. Freshly picked berries and nuts. All-natural Amish cheese. Herbs and spices. Artisan woodwork. Whimsical jewelry. Candles and soaps. Leather wraps.

You’re not in the middle of an exotic bazaar – you’re among the 80 vendors at the South Haven Farm Market at the Huron St. Pavilion, an annual highlight of downtown South Haven.

A point of interest in South Haven for many years, the market connects regional producers and artists with people from all over for a celebration of original food, beauty and creativity.

The Delight of Diversity

The joy and success of downtown South Haven’s farm market reside in its variety.

Farm Manager Harold Stanton of Stanton Farm of Gobles, Michigan, has been selling his farm-raised, non-GMO beef, chicken and pork at the market for eight years.

“For us, being at the market is like going to an event,” he said. “We really enjoy the customers, the personal aspect and the South Haven atmosphere. People there ask a lot of questions because they care about where their food comes from. They like being able to speak to the farmer and know how the animals are raised and fed.

“The market is also a meaningful extension of our farm’s livelihood. It represents about 20 percent of our sales.”

Stokes’ Blueberry Farm & Nursery has been participating in the market for the past six years. The farm and nursery

specializes in blueberries but also offers asparagus; dark sweet, Rainier and sour cherries; peaches; apple varieties such as Gala, Red Delicious and Jonagold’s; and jarred jams, jellies, preserves and pickled asparagus.

“As a first-generation family farm, we take pride in our Michigan farm land and feel blessed and honored to be providing locally grown produce alongside other hard-working Michigan farmers,” said Jamie Stokes-Glowacki, the farm and nursery’s office administrator.

“We enjoy being able to interact with market visitors and answer their questions about how we grow and care for our crops. We believe the power to obtain safe and healthy foods needs to be with consumers. A local farmers market lets them purchase fruits and veggies that are truly ‘in season’ from trusted local sources.

“The South Haven Farm Market is a great way to bring the community together and support local business, all within walking distance of beautiful Lake Michigan. It doesn’t get any better than that.”

The Honduran family–owned Patas de Pluma (Michigan City, Indiana) offers a variety of handmade artisan carvings (e.g. bowls, jewelry boxes, wall art, statuettes), as well as hammock chairs. In 2019 they are also adding Mayan woven cloths and purses, Garifuna shell jewelry and some handmade pottery items.

Born and raised in Honduras, Roberto Enamorado is in charge of Patas de Pluma’s products and sales. He has found great value and appeal in the market since joining in 2018.

“The South Haven Farm Market brings together beautiful summer days, interesting people and great food all in one place,” he said. “It’s also conveniently located for those who come to enjoy Lake Michigan’s coastline.”

The market has been a boon for business as well.

“I love to talk to people about my home country of Honduras and the wealth of its talent and the resourcefulness of its people,” Roberto said. “The response to what we offer has been overwhelmingly positive. Many people say they have never seen anything like our products before.”

For even more insight into the vendors’ diversity, view the complete listing.

Make Your Plans for the Market

Whether you’re here for fun in the sun, dining, fishing, shopping or trips out on the lake, the South Haven Farm Market adds excitement and culture to your stay. The market welcomes visitors 8am–2pm on Saturdays May–October as well as on Wednesdays June–August.

For more information, call (269) 206-0324 or visit www.southhavenfarmmarket.com.

While many market vendors accept credit cards, some do not; carrying some cash is recommended.

 

About the Author

A creative writer for many years, Jon Davis (eloquentarrow.com) paints pictures with his words and captivates readers with distinctive language. He now shares his love for South Haven with us, writing about the experiences you can have only in the Haven. Jon resides in Oswego, IL, with his wife, Kristie, and two daughters. They visit South Haven often to take in the scenic beauty and spend meaningful time as a family.