Chelsea (population: 4,900), one hour west of Detroit, is full of local pride. Independent businesses line the main drag, restaurants serve locally raised food, and its signature Purple Rose Theatre was founded by a hometown celebrity.
Banana Cream Tart at Common Grill
Banana Cream Tart at Common Grill

What to do

Purple Rose Theatre Founded by Chelsea native and actor Jeff Daniels, the 168-seat venue provides an intimate, affordable theater experience (tickets usually run $27 to $42). (734) 433-7673;

Where to eat

Common Grill Fresh, seasonal and (often) local ingredients go into options such as pear and Gorgonzola salad or seafood risotto. Arrive early when a show is on at the Purple Rose Theatre, or if you have a group of six or more, make reservations. (734) 475-0470;

Where to stay

Chelsea House Victorian Inn This B&B in a converted 1880s Queen Anne offers cozy rooms, free Wi-Fi and private baths. (877) 618-4935;

For information: Ypsilanti Area Convention and Visitors Bureau (734) 483-4444;