In a place like Michigan, where natural beauty abounds just about anywhere you go and even the smaller cities boast woodlots, farm fields and wetlands, it's easy to take nature for granted. That's one great thing about Earth Day, it serves as a means to actually make you think about the incredible bounty of natural beauty that's all around. Michigan leaps to this particular occasion with all the fervor you might expect, and as such, special Earth Day events abound. Here are 10 of the best places to celebrate Earth Day in Michigan!
If you're going to Michigan for Earth Day, you might as well start out by seeing what's at stake without a little extra ecological awareness. While there are plenty of places in Michigan to see natural beauty, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore near Munising is probably one of the best and most wide-ranging examples. Featuring sandstone formations, forests, lakeshore, and plenty more, this is one of the most sterling examples of natural beauty Michigan can offer.
The annual Ann Arbor Earth Day Festival has been running for the last 45 years, so this is a place that knows what it's doing. Taking place at the Leslie Science & Nature Center, the event offers educational displays, live animal demonstrations, and a variety of hands-on activities in a bid to make the day as entertaining as it is educational.
The annual Farmington Hills Earth Day Celebration—running for four years so far—offers a wide array of special events to go along with it. Including live music, face painting, and a free hayride for the first 100 guests, the event also includes informational exhibits and a seedling giveaway so that, upon leaving the event, guests have plenty of new knowledge to act on. That makes the event not only fun for the day, but also helpful for a lifetime.
It shouldn't come as a surprise that a nature center would have plenty of events for Earth Day, and the Kalamazoo Nature Center is no exception. Last year's event featured a 5K run along with live animal programs and a slate of nature hikes. Throw in the center's normal events and you've got the makings of a great experience for Earth Day right on hand.
This annual event offers not only educational opportunities, but opportunities to shop various eco-friendly exhibitors and live music as well. For those wondering how to keep the kids occupied in the meantime—taking kids to an Earth Day event is a recipe for bored kids—a Whole Kids Korner is set up to offer a variety of activities to keep the young ones occupied like decorating boxes for use at animal shelters as kitty forts.
Head on up to Ontonagon for the Earth Day at the Porcupine Mountains event. Last year's event offered a closer look at the bats of the Porcupine Mountains, with a specific focus on an illness said bats faced: White Nose Syndrome. The education was one thing, but visitors also had a chance to construct their own bat house, a development which helps keep mosquitoes in check by thoroughly natural means.
Having run for the last 11 years in Midland, the annual Earth Day Expo allows visitors to experience a variety of different ecological issues. Sponsored in part by the Alden B. Dow Museum of Science and Art as well as the American Chemical Society ensures there's a wide variety of things to see and do at the event. From demonstrations of various points to a full slate of hands-on activities—even some special material for the kids—the end result is a great Earth Day festival that shouldn't disappoint.
Earth Day is one thing, but in Muskegon, they step it up seven-fold and run a complete Earth Week. Featuring programs on mass transit, sustainability, a shoreline cleanup and several other events, Muskegon's Earth Week celebration is sure to not only offer a fun reason to hit Muskegon, but also a great way to celebrate the natural beauty all around us. Not to mention learning more about ways to keep the natural beauty as beautiful as possible.
John Ball Zoo hosts a Party for the Planet event that can’t be missed. With a variety of conservation and other organizations getting together amid the various animals of John Ball Zoo in Grand Rapids, there will be plenty of new things to learn and lots to see and do in the meantime.
Every year in Ludington, A Few Friends for the Environment of the World (AFFEW) gets together to have a big Earth Day event. Featuring information on permaculture and rain barrels, this will cover a lot of what many other events will cover. However, AFFEW's event goes far beyond the norm to cover such unexpected topics as green investing as well, and opens things up still farther to offer events for the kids and even some special snacks to show off how tasty environmentalism can be.