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Shopping & Dining

Shopping in the Bay Area is a real treat for those in search of everything from everyday items to one-of-a-kind gifts. Large, well-known chains and locally owned establishments stand freely or within a number of convenient shopping centers lining the streets of the Bay Area, while even more thrive in Bay City’s central retail district in the heart of town.

Downtown Bay City, a “Great American Main Street,” is brimming with historic architecture reflective of the 19th and early 20th centuries, which creates a truly unique shopping and dining experience. The Saginaw River winds through the heart of downtown, making way for gorgeous riverside parks and walkways. Many downtown merchants are family-owned and operated, welcoming patrons to peruse through unique collectibles, jewelry, high-end clothing, crafts, art galleries and much more. Antiquers in the downtown district make regular stops at the Bay City Antique Center, recognized as the largest antique center in the state. This unique retail destination is comprised of a block-long showroom filled with more than 100 dealers offering a variety of fine antiques, collectibles and more for sale.

On the other side of the river is the quaint Midland Street Historic District, a hub overflowing with vintage structures that host an array of boutique shops, professional office spaces, unique eateries and nightclubs. This lively district, the business hub of West Bay City, has garnered recognition as the “Entertainment Capital of Mid-Michigan.”

For a wider selection of top-name retailers and restaurants, shoppers take a trip to the Bay City Mall. Anchored by Younkers, Sears, JCPenney and Target, the mall features a number of specialty shops and professional services, an eight-screen movie theater and several eateries within the mall and its vicinity. Nearby Saginaw also offers a regional mall, Fashion Square Mall, which is home to three major department stores and more than 110 shops.

The dining selection in the Bay Area is equally as impressive as its retail options. Charming coffeehouses and delicatessens are inviting to diners looking to relax with a good book, while fine-dining establishments make for the perfect night out. Family-friendly restaurants, fast-food diners and a variety of delicious ethnic offerings are part of the dining mix in the Bay Area as well. There are also plenty of after-dinner options, as area pubs and lounges offer late-night menus and spirits accompanied by live entertainment on the weekends and designated weekdays.

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