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Heritage (Gibson) Guitar Factory Tour

Join us on Thursday, July 13, to tour the Heritage Guitar Factory.

Click HERE to register!

Event: Heritage Guitar Factory Tour

When: Thursday Morning - July 13 - 11:00 a.m.

List of CCCoA Convention Events:

  • Tour Bell's Brewery (Thursday);

  • Visit the old Checker Motors plant site and Markin Glen Park (Thursday);

  • Tour the Gibson guitar factory (now called Heritage Guitars) (Thursday);

  • Visit Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park (Friday);

  • Visit the Gerald Ford Presidential Library (Friday);

  • Tour the Gilmore Classic Car Museum (home of Checkers) (Saturday);

  • Visit Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park (Friday);

Kalamazoo’s history with the guitar dates back to the late 1800’s when a man by the name of Orville Gibson arrived in town and began designing his own innovative mandolins. By the early 1900’s, his company was also producing guitars and other stringed instruments and, throughout most of the next century, the Gibson Guitar Corporation grew to become the world’s premier guitar manufacturer. From 1917, that growth occurred at the historic 225 Parsons Street location, until 1984 when the company left Kalamazoo for good, closing the doors on the iconic factory.

Not long after, a few former senior employees had decided they wanted to continue the tradition of handcrafting beautiful, high quality electric guitars in Kalamazoo. By the spring of 1985, those individuals had acquired space at the former factory, purchased a lot of the old guitar-making equipment, and were ready to roll.

The history continues so come see how those guitars are made!

Here are the visitor requirements as shown on the Heritage web site:

• By entering our production facility you are entering at your own risk. Parents are responsible for their own children. For safety purposes, children under the age of 5 will not be admitted on the factory floor.

• All visitors must sign-in upon arrival.

• Safety glasses are required at all times. We also have earplugs and masks available.

• Proper footwear is required – closed-toe, closed-heel shoes only. No high heels, no sandals, no crocs, no flip flops.

• Visitors must remain on the scheduled tour route at all times. No exceptions.

• While on the tour, all visitors must refrain from touching any equipment, guitars, or other materials unless directed to by your tour guide.

• While on the tour, please silence all cell phones. Photography is permitted, but no phone calls please.

• If you need to leave the tour early, please inform your tour guide and they will direct you to the proper exit.

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