Metro Detroit Family Campout Guide

If you are anything like me, the idea of sitting around a campfire out in the middle of the woods on a peaceful Michigan summer night telling stories, making s’mores and enjoying each others company sounds like an ideal situation. However, if you also have young children like me, considering the reality of such a situation will also bring to mind {endless} concerns. From ‘What if my toddler wakes up crying in the middle of the night waking up the whole campground?’ to ‘What if someone wets the….sleeping bag?’ or even ‘What if someone gets sick or (maybe even more likely) burnt by the fire?’ it’s enough to put off thoughts of any sort of camping for quite some time. That is until I discovered a few years ago that several metro Detroit communities actually offer a Family Campout night.

IMG_1431 2
These special events are usually handled through local Parks & Rec departments and basically give families the opportunity to actually set up camp and spend the night close to home. The key is they are held at your local park and there are lots of activities planned by someone else! This way, if there is some dramatic development you are close to home and have the ability to bail and return to warm beds whenever you feel like it. Plus you know there will be lots of other families and kids around with supervised, structured activities. Makes the whole thing far less intimidating, doesn’t it?

Bird's Nest craft at The Great West Bloomfield Camp Out
Bird’s Nest craft at The Great West Bloomfield Camp Out

I won’t lie, you still have to pack half your household up to stay one night – that is the downside for sure – but it is a great experience to give your kids if you are willing and able (but just not willing to make a big commitment to the wilderness!)

Listed below are some Metro Detroit Family Campouts that we have found for this summer:

Safe S'Mores!
Safe S’Mores!

Great Farmington Hills Campout – June 4, Heritage Park
Enjoy the great outdoors with your family at the Great Farmington Hills Campout in Heritage Park on Saturday, June 4 through Sunday, June 5.  
Families can enjoy Nature Center tours, trail hikes, and free time with the family from 1 to 9 p.m. on Saturday.  Participants can then choose to either camp out afterwards in their own backyards or stay in a pre-reserved campsite for an overnight adventure in Heritage Park.  The deadline for reservations is May 31.  The $25 fee includes a family campsite, giveaways, dinner, and a pancake breakfast.

The Great Campout Novi  – June 18, Lakeshore Park
Hot Dog Cookout, Lawn Games, Geocaching, Extended Beach Hours, S’Mores, Campfire Stories, Fireworks & Continental Breakfast all included!  6 Campers and 2 tents allowed per ‘site’. $35/site Resident; $45/site non-resident.  Register at by June 11.

Canton Family Movie Camp Out – July 15, Heritage Park
Families are invited to set up tents around the amphitheater and enjoy a movie at dusk. There will be plenty to do before the movie, including games, activities and entertainment for the entire family beginning at 6pm. The $20 overnight camping fee must be paid on site the day of the event. If you plan to come out to the event, but are not camping overnight, there will be a $5 wristband available to take part in the evening’s activities. Dinner & concession items will be sold Friday evening. Canoeing on Friday and a pancake breakfast on Saturday morning will be available for a nominal fee. Tent set up begins at noon on Friday July, 15. RV’s and tents are both welcome. Fee: $20 overnight camping fee or $5 wristbands for evening activities Ages: All Ages Heritage Park, North Pavilion 6pm–11am; Tent set-up may begin at 12pm on Friday.


Maybury State Park Family Campout – July 16 or August 6, Maybury State Park
Camp set up begins at noon on Saturday and clean up should be finished by noon on Sunday. $30 per family of 4, $5 for each additional person. Cars entering the park must have a State of Michigan Recreation Passport.

The Great West Bloomfield Camp Out – September 9, Marshbank Park
Activities to include: Fishing, Archery, Hayrides, Crafts, 9 Hole Glow Golf Course, Live Music & S’mores by the Campfire.  Dinner and breakfast are included in the registration fee.  Tent set-up begins: 4:30 pm, activities start: 6:00 pm, Check-out: by 11:00 am Saturday.  Fee: $9 per resident and $11 per nonresident, ages 2+

Be sure to let us know if there is one in your area we missed! Happy camping!



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.