- Special Places to Visit
- Things to Do
- Where to Sleep, Eat & Shop
- Rivers & Lakes
The Old U.S. 27 Motor Tour was the brainchild of one very remarkable man, Craig Parrish. Craig was born in Lansing, Michigan to a family deeply embedded in the car industry and his love and passion for automobiles grew from that family heritage at a very young age (at the age of 4 he could identify cars by their tail lights). In his teens, like most, he would drive his car to downtown Lansing and “Cruise the Gut”. Later in life, while reminiscing about how much fun they had on Friday nights “Cruisin the Gut”, he came up with the idea of restoring the cruise in the form of a car show during each summer months. He worked tirelessly with the City of Lansing and the downtown merchants to organize and host the Cruises during summer for ten years.
In the early 2000s, Craig had the idea to have Old U.S. 27 in Michigan become designated as a historic highway and went about making that happen. In 2010, that dream became a reality as the Michigan House of Representatives passed a resolution sponsored by Lansing Representative Joan Bauer to officially designate the route as a historic highway.
As part of the historic designation of U.S. 27, Craig had the vision to create a Motor Tour along the route from Coldwater to Cheboygan, like the Route 66 experience, driving a piece of US history. He went to communities along Old U.S. 27 to ask if they would be interested in having their town participate in a week long traveling car show with a police escort from one town to the next. He told them, “I will bring the cars and the people, you bring the party”.
The Tour began in 2006 and has evolved into a summer highlight in the State of Michigan for car enthusiasts as well as anyone looking to come out, view the amazing cars that come into town, and capture a bit of history.
Throughout the years, the Old U.S. 27 Motor Tour has helped to bring life to the small-town communities in Michigan as well as to bring people together to drive the old road, forge strong friendships and have fun together.
We are forever thankful too Craig for his vision and his passion. Craig lost his battle with cancer on July 29, 2021, but his dream lives on.