DETROIT [May 9, 2019 ] – The Detroit Riverfront Conservancy announced details today regarding Detroit’s kickoff to summer, the 13th Annual Detroit River Days presented by Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort on June 21-23, 2019. This year’s Detroit River Days will be held at a new location, West Riverfront Park located at 1801 West Jefferson (between Rosa Parks Boulevard and 8th Street) in Detroit. West Riverfront Park is a 22-acre park along the Detroit Riverfront that currently hosts big summer concerts and events including Mo POP Festival and Detroit Touch-A-Truck. It is the future site of Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Centennial Park, which will open in 2022.  More information including event and parking details can be found at

This year, West Grand Boulevard meets West Riverfront Park as the city celebrates 60 years of the Motor City’s signature sound. In partnership with Motown Museum, Detroit River Days will feature performances from the “King of Motown,” Smokey Robinson and R&B group Mary Jane Girls. The festival’s Kroger Food Truck Rally will include over 110 food trucks throughout the weekend and will be Michigan’s largest food truck rally yet.  

“River Days is a great Detroit tradition, and we are excited to host the festival at West Riverfront Park this year,” said Matt Cullen, Board Chairman, Detroit Riverfront Conservancy. “We are continuing development on both the east and west riverfronts with the goal of 5.5 miles of a transformed waterfront from MacArthur Bridge to the Ambassador Bridge, which includes the creation of a world-class 22-acre park on the west riverfront.”

“River Days is a great opportunity for everyone to experience West Riverfront,” said Mark Wallace, president & CEO of the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy. ”Detroiters and visitors will be able to enjoy exceptional music, delicious food, fun activities and the spectacular views that the west riverfront has to offer during the festival. It will be a great preview of what’s to come as we break ground on the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Centennial Park next year.”

Headlining National Music Acts

In partnership with Motown Museum, Detroit River Days will feature headlining music on the Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort National Stage including the “King of Motown,” Grammy-winning Smokey Robinson and R&B Group Mary Jane Girls on Friday. Funk and R&B group Luther Re-Lives will also perform on the national stage on Friday night. Grammy-winning R&B singer Brandy and Grammy-nominated R&B singer Brian McKnight will perform on Saturday night along with local band Notorious. Grammy-winning R&B Singer Faith Evans and Grammy-nominated R&B singer Carl Thomas will perform on Sunday night along with local singer Brielle Lesley.

Motown Museum Partnership

In celebration of the 60th anniversary of Motown Record Corporation, Motown Museum is a partner in a big way for this year’s event.

The festival will also include Motown 60 at 6, an hour of local Motown music and spoken word presented by Motown Museum. Motown 60 at 6 will take place each evening at 6 p.m. on the Soaring Eagle & Resort stage. The performances will include talent from the Motown Museum's programming, including Motown MIC: The Spoken Word poetry competition, the Motown SPARK and IGNITE Summer Camps for metro Detroit youth, and the Motown AMPLIFY: The Sound of Detroit vocal competition.

As part of the food truck experience, participating food trucks will take part in a cooking competition to create a Motown-themed dish. Judges including Detroit River Days sponsors, partners and the Motown Museum team, selecting the best dishes.

 Motown had a very family-oriented atmosphere with artists, musicians, producers, background players and employees frequently coming to Hitsville to hang out. The kitchen was one of the most popular spots, where the beloved cook, Miss Lilly, would serve delicious comfort food, including her mouth-watering spicy chili, affectionately called “Miss Lilly’s Chili,” along with hot dogs, fried chicken and creamy mashed potatoes. Paying homage to that special memory, selected Food Trucks will participate in a “Miss Lilly’s Chili,” competition.

“Bringing Motown magic to anticipated events like River Days is important to us as an organization invested in the success of Detroit and our community,” said Raina Baker, Motown Museum Program Manager. “We are honored to participate in this year’s event as another way the local community can celebrate this milestone year with us all year long as we commemorate the 60th anniversary of the founding of Motown Record Corporation.”

Local Music Acts

Much of the musical excitement, which will include a host of new acts, will take place on the Metro by T-Mobile Stage and the Michigan Lottery Stage, where performances will range from rock, pop, indie and blues to soul, country and of course, Motown. 

While the festival’s $5 general admission includes access to all performances, VIP premier seats are now on sale for the major headlining performances featured on the National Stage. The tickets are $35 and can only be purchased in advance of the festival. Purchases must be made online at while quantities last. 


Friday, June 21

1:00 p.m. Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow

5:00 p.m. Luther Re-Lives

6:45 p.m. Mary Jane Girls      

8:30 p.m. Smokey Robinson

Saturday, June 22

3:30 p.m. Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow

5:00 p.m. Notorious

6:45 p.m. Brian McKnight

8:30 p.m. Brandy

Sunday, June 23

3:30 p.m. Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow

5:30 p.m. Brielle Lesley

7:15 p.m. Carl Thomas 

8:30 p.m. Faith Evans


Metro Detroit’s R&B, soul, rock & roll, country and Motown acts will fill the local dining tent stage.

Friday, June 21

11:45 a.m. Jill Govan (Acoustic/Soul)

1:00 p.m. Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow

2:30 p.m. CHIT! (Classic Rock)

4:15 p.m. Sara Marie Barron (Neo Soul/R&B)

6:00 p.m. Motown 60 at 6 (Presented by Motown Museum)

7:30 p.m. Alise King (R&B)

9:00 p.m. Larry Lee & Back in the Day Band (Funk/R&B) 

Saturday, June 22

11:30 a.m. Lia K Catallo (Pop)

1:00 p.m. 3rd Degree Burns (Classic Rock)

2:30 p.m. NDEEP THE BAND (R&B/Retro Soul)

3:30 p.m. Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow  

4:30 p.m. IS Evolution (Rock/Soul)

6:00 p.m. Motown 60 at 6 (Presented by Motown Museum)

7:30 p.m. Adventures with Vultures (Alternative Folk)

9:00 p.m. Eliza Neals & The Narcotics (Blues-Rock)

Sunday, June 23

11:30 a.m. Athens Creek (Americana)

1:00 p.m. GOODWEATHER (R&B/Soul)

2:30 p.m. Denise Davis & The Motor City Sensations (Motown Classics/Pop/80s)

3:30 p.m. Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow

4:30 p.m. Half Light Music (Alternative Rock)

6:00 p.m. Motown 60 at 6 (Presented by Motown Museum)

7:30 p.m. Todd Michael Band (Country)

9:00 p.m. Killer Flamingos (Pop Alternative)


The best of metro Detroit’s rock, blues, indie, contemporary jazz, funk and soul bands will play on the Michigan Lottery Stage.

Friday, June 21

11:15 a.m. Ceolsige (Singer/Songwriter, Indie Rock)

12:15 p.m. Alex Mendenall (Indie Soul)

1:00 p.m. Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow  

2:00 p.m. Vespre (Soul Gaze/Nu Disco)

3:30 p.m. Lady Champagne (Blues)

5:00 p.m. 313 The Live Experience (R&B/Pop)

6:45 p.m. Laura Rain & The Caesars (Soul/R&B/Funk)

8:30 p.m. Dennis Coffey (Contemporary Jazz/Motown)

Saturday, June 22

11:15 a.m. Acoustic Ash (Singer/Songwriter)

12:45 p.m. Random Facts (Alternative Classic Rock)

2:15 p.m. Flexadecible (Funk and Soul)

3:30 p.m. Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow

4:30 p.m.  Cast Iron Cornbread (Rock/Country)

6:00 p.m.  Matt Austin (Country)

7:30 p.m. Detroit Trouble (Extreme Blues)

9:00 p.m. Big Poppa & The Machine (R&B/Rock)

Sunday, June 23

11:15 a.m. Emma Guzman (Folk/Americana)

12:45 p.m. Honey Monsoon (Soul Fusion)

2:15 p.m. Heroes of Charlotte (Pop Punk)

3:30 p.m.  Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow

4:30 p.m. Fangs & Twang (Monster Themed Twangy Rock)

6:00 p.m. Mark Whalen & The Buttermilk Boys (Indie Rock/Indie Pop)

7:30 p.m. Priscilla Price & Friends Blues/Soul (Blues/Soul)

9:00 p.m. Roots Vibrations (Reggae, Soca)

Flagstar Bank Kid’s Corner

The Flagstar Bank Kids’ Corner will be open Friday, Saturday and Sunday of Detroit River Days between 11:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. Families will be able to celebrate 60 years of Motown music with the Motown-themed atmosphere and a range of activities and entertainment for free. The Kid’s Corner is produced by The Parade Company.  This year’s activities include: a monster mural, craft stations with Arts & Scraps, sand art, spin art, face painting and themed fun brought to you by the Detroit Institute of Arts and the Michigan Science Center.

Additionally, kids will have their pick of events on the Delta Dental Kids Stage including magic, science, music and animal shows.


Friday, June 21

11:00 a.m. Michigan Science Center Stage Show

12:00 p.m. Magic Show

1:00 p.m.  Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow

2:00 p.m. Magic Show

3:00 p.m.  Michigan Science Center Stage Show

3:45 p.m.  DJ Jamez

7:00 p.m.  Earth Angels

Saturday, June 22

11:00 a.m. Michigan Science Center Stage Show

12:00 p.m. Magic Show

1:00 p.m. Michigan Science Center Stage Show

2:00 p.m. Magic Show

3:00 p.m. DJ Jamez

3:30 p.m. Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow

6:30 p.m. Animal Magic

Sunday, June 23

11:00 a.m. Michigan Science Center Stage Show

12:00 p.m. Magic Show

1:00 p.m.  Michigan Science Center Stage Show

2:00 p.m. Magic Show

3:00 p.m. DJ Jamez

3:30 p.m.  Emcee for Tuskegee Airmen Museum Airshow

6:00 p.m.  Animal Magic

7:15 p.m.  Earth Angels

 Kroger Food Truck Rally – Michigan’s Largest Food Truck Rally

Over 110 food trucks will participate in the Kroger Food Truck Rally throughout the weekend of Detroit River Days presented by Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort. The Kroger Food Truck Rally will be Michigan’s largest food truck rally to date. The Soaring Eagle Cuisine Machine will be the star of the Kroger Food Truck Rally.

“Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort is thrilled once again to be a part of Detroit River Days, adding to the incredible entertainment and food at the festival this year,” said Raul Venegas, Executive Director of Marketing, Entertainment & Sales, Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort. “We always enjoy interacting with the community and bringing our best restaurants and dishes to Detroit for a fun-filled weekend.” 

Other participating food trucks in the Kroger Food Truck Rally include BeaverTails Detroit, Cosmic Burrito, D Motown Deli, Detroit's Original Seafood Truck, The Great Lakes Food Truck, Mz. Moma Jean's Kitchen, The Smoke N Pig and Wahlburgers. For a full list of participating food trucks, please visit

Festival Favorites on Land, Water and in the Sky

The air show, a crowd favorite, will return over the Detroit River for its sixth year. Staged by the Tuskegee Airmen National Historical Museum, performances will be at 1 p.m. on Friday and 3:30 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) will provide a variety of hands-on activities including education games tables, live animals and fishing demonstrations. Guests can stroll through the DNR area and talk with wildlife and fish experts, foresters, and conservation officers.

Festival favorite Typhoon Tommy and his world-class jet ski team sponsored by Pepsi will use the Detroit River as their stage when Typhoon Tommy brings the Detroit River USA Freestyle Championships to Detroit River Days. Pilots will use a variety of freestyle jet-skis and hydroflight devices to perform big air jumps, backflips, corkscrew spins and underwater dives for the crowds along the riverfront.

9th Annual Shimmer on the River

Kick-off summer in style at the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy’s 9th annual Shimmer on the River, an exclusive preview to Detroit River Days. On June 20th, Shimmer on the River will welcome Motown legends The Four Tops to the stage for an unforgettable live performance, and will treat guests to a food truck rally, live piano karaoke, games, refreshments, and all-ages activities.

This year, the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy is proud to recognize Nettie Seabrooks’ commitment to the revitalization of the Detroit Riverfront with the Shimmer Award. Guests can join the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy at the VIP Reception to raise a glass to her unwavering support and toast the beginning to another great summer along the river. Visit to purchase tickets and for more information.

RiverWalk Buskers presented by the Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center

Detroit River Days is pleased to welcome back a popular cast of buskers and street performers along the RiverWalk!  These performances will be located throughout West Riverfront Park.

Detroit Marriott – The Official Hotel of Detroit River Days

As the official hotel sponsor of Detroit River Days, the Detroit Marriott invites families to explore the Detroit Riverfront during the festival and stay downtown in guest rooms with floor to ceiling windows featuring spectacular views of the city and river. For reservations, visit or call 1-800-352-0831.

The 2019 Detroit River Days presented by Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort starts on Friday, June 21 at 11 a.m. Festival hours are 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The Conservancy will charge a $5 admission fee to help underwrite programming and operational costs for the festival. Each guest will receive a $3 coupon to use towards food from the Kroger Food Truck Rally ($6 minimum purchase). Admission to the festival is FREE before 5 p.m. on Friday, June 21. Visit for a full lineup for events and parking information.

Detroit River Days presented by Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort is supported by Delta Dental, Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center, Eagle Security, Flagstar Bank, Trusted Health Plan, Imperial Beverage, Kroger, Mancan, Metro by T-Mobile, Michigan Lottery, Mrs. Meyers, Pepsi, Tito’s Vodka & Uncle Nearest.



About the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy

The Detroit Riverfront Conservancy is a non-profit organization founded in 2003 with the mission to develop public access to Detroit’s riverfront and serve as an anchor for economic development.  As the permanent stewards of the RiverWalk and the Dequindre Cut, the Conservancy is responsible for raising the funds needed for construction, operation, maintenance, security and programming of the public spaces located along the riverfront.  The Conservancy’s ultimate vision is to develop five-and-a-half miles of riverfront from the Ambassador Bridge on the west to Gabriel Richard Park, just east of the MacArthur Bridge to Belle Isle.  Visit for more information

Media Contacts:

Sara Campbell, 315-727-3280, [email protected]

Marc Pasco, 313-566-8240, [email protected]