Downtown East Lansing is always buzzing with excitement, especially when the students are in town. But this summer, there's an extra special reason to head downtown: Albert EL Fresco.

Albert EL Fresco in Downtown East Lansing

Albert EL Fresco is making a grand return, transforming Albert Avenue (between Abbot Road and M.A.C. Avenue) into a pedestrian-friendly haven. Picture this: outdoor seating, cozy rocking chairs, hammocks for lounging, decorative lighting, and plenty of shade. The area also features fun games like cornhole, giant Jenga, and Connect 4, making it perfect for a family night out.

Photo via the City of East Lansing
Photo via the City of East Lansing

Related: Lansing Area Restaurants & Bars With the Best Outdoor Seating

And can we take a moment to appreciate the pun? "Albert EL Fresco" – a clever nod to al fresco dining and East Lansing. Puns always make everything better, don't they?

Dining Al Fresco in East Lansing

Whether you’re planning a picnic or craving some local cuisine, Albert EL Fresco has got you covered. Bring your own food and non-alcoholic drinks, grab a table, and enjoy the games. Just remember, no outside alcohol is allowed – but don’t worry, there’s a solution for that!

For those who fancy an adult beverage, you can purchase one from a nearby bar or restaurant and enjoy it in their designated outdoor areas. Keep in mind, that not all establishments have outdoor dining spaces, so plan accordingly.

East Lansing Bar and Restaurant Options

If dining out is more your style, Downtown East Lansing has a plethora of options. Craving tacos? Barrio is your go-to. In the mood for some bar food and a cold beer? Jolly Pumpkin Brewery or HopCat (with its impressive beer selection) will hit the spot.

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Albert EL Fresco isn’t just about eating and drinking. Throughout the summer, the area hosts a variety of events, including free yoga classes and live music. It’s the perfect way to unwind and enjoy the vibrant community spirit. Check out their full events calendar to stay in the loop.

Photo courtesy of Dawn Steele
Photo courtesy of Dawn Steele

Albert EL Fresco will be taking place along Albert Avenue between Grove Street and M.A.C. Avenue, operating during the warmer months. This year, it's open through August 12th. And we all know parking can be hard in East Lansing, take a look at available places to park HERE.

Lansing Area Bars and Restaurants That Serve Amazing Mocktails

Whether you are a pregnant person, a sober person, an underage person, or just a person who doesn't feel like drinking alcohol at the moment, there's got to be something out there for us, right? That's when I discovered the beauty of a mocktail. If you don't drink alcohol, for whatever reason, there are some fantastic restaurants and bars in Lansing that serve up more than pop and lemonade. Check out these spots that have amazing mocktails. 

Gallery Credit: Kristen Matthews

The Best Places for Happy Hour in the Lansing Area

When that 5 o'clock feeling starts hitting at around 3:30, 4 o'clock, it's probably time to call it quits for the day and take a little break. You can grab your favorite co-workers or give your bestie a buzz and head to any of these places in the greater Lansing area. These 14 restaurants, bars, and pubs have the best happy hour around.

Gallery Credit: Kristen Matthews

Lansing Restaurants That Should Be Featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives

The Lansing restaurants listed below are gems of the city. If you haven't been to all of them yet, add them to your list. We think Guy Fieri should add them to his list as well so he can feature them the next time he comes back to Lansing for Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

Gallery Credit: JR

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