Summer break may be over but that doesn’t mean the fun has to stop. Whether your family are weekend warriors or homeschoolers looking for some supplemental education, the Huron-Clinton Metroparks have a stacked line up of programs and events for kids of all ages!
Below is a select list of events happening at the Huron-Clinton Metroparks this month that will get your families outdoors, exploring, and having fun. Many events require pre-registration, so if you see something you like, be sure to click through and register before spots fill up. To see all the events and programs at your favorite Huron-Clinton Metropark, check out the Metroparks’ park-specific calendars. If you’d like to see all events and programs at once, visit the full Metroparks Events Calendar.
September Events at Huron-Clinton Metroparks
Voyageur Canoe | September 8 & 29 | Stony Creek Metropark
Travel back in time 300 years to the days of the fur trade on our 34-foot Voyageur canoe. We will guide you through the life of a Voyageur as you paddle the great canoe along the lakeshore. Learn how trade affected our history, enjoy seeing wildlife, and get a little exercise during this evening program.
All About Bats | September 8 | Kensington Metropark
Do bats drink blood? Do bats get stuck in your hair? Learn about bat basics and debunk myths about Michigan’s only flying mammal! Learn how bats benefit humans in many meaningful ways and what you can do to help bats in your area. Then, head out with us for a .25 mile walk along a mixed gravel trail in the dark to see these amazing flying acrobats in action.
This hike is intended for participants who can patiently remain quiet and listen closely while we use Echo Meters to listen for bats.
Butterfly Trail Hike | September 9 | Oakwoods Metropark
Let’s take a closer look at some of the plants, insects, and animals that live in the area around our Butterfly Viewing Trail. Mullein, Monarchs, and more will be the focus on this leisurely walk.
Hayride Adventure | September 9, 10, 23, & 24 | Kensington Metropark
Help our staff get our draft horses ready for action. Grab a brush and get them groomed. Take part behind the scenes as the draft horses are harnessed and hitched to the wagon. Learn what the different elements of their harness do, and how they work together. When the horses are dressed and ready, you’ll be all set for a relaxing hayride along the farm’s wooded trails. Don’t miss out on this unique hands-on experience!
Art Factory Workshops for Kids | September 9, 16, & 30 | Willow Metropark
What better place for artistic inspiration than nature? In partnership with Mint Artist Guild, we are hosting art workshops for kids at Willow Metropark. For eight weeks this fall youth can explore different forms of art. From experimental drawing to painting to 3D art, kids will have lots of fun learning and creating something new each week!
All program supplies will be provided. Register for a single class or as many as you want!
September 9 | Art Factory Workshop for Kids: Willow–Create a Rain Stick
September 16 | Art Factory Workshop for Kids: Willow–Books and Bookmarks
September 30 | Art Factory Workshop for Kids: Willow–Tree Weaving
Stories in the Shade | September 9 | Stony Creek Metropark
During this outdoor program, your child will explore nature through a book, activities, and a craft. Bring a blanket and enjoy the cool shade of a tree as your child discovers the worlds of caterpillars, frogs, fireflies, and more. Each week, we’ll explore a new topic.
Saturday, September 9 | Stories in the Shade: Sticky Spiders
Harness & Hitch | September 12 & 26 | Wolcott Mill Metropark
Watch our staff get our draft horses ready for action. Take pictures and ask questions in this behind the scenes look at what it takes to get the draft horses harnessed and hitched to the wagon. Learn what makes draft horses so special, and how we care for these amazing animals. Then climb aboard for a short wagon ride around the farm. This fun and relaxing adventure is great for the entire family.
Homeschool Adventures | September 14 | Lake St. Clair Metropark
This homeschool series will cover a different topic each month focusing on Michigan wildlife and the unique habitats we have at Lake St. Clair Metropark. Each program will have indoor and outdoor elements including guided hikes through the nature trails.
September 14 | Homeschool Adventures: Sweeping for Insects
HawkFest | September 16 & 17 | Lake Erie Metropark
HawkFest is a two-day celebration for the whole family, focusing on birds of prey (eagles, hawks, falcons, and owls) and the annual fall hawk migration over Lake Erie Metropark. The celebration includes vendors such as Vortex Optics, the Detroit International Wildlife Refuge, Wild Birds Unlimited, Rusty Feathers Design, Detroit Audubon, and Oakland Audubon.
The Michigan Hawking Club will be on hand with live birds of prey. Joe Rogers, from the Wildlife Recovery Association, will be conducting programming throughout the day, both Saturday and Sunday, and Reg Pettibone, of the Ho-Chunk Nation of Wisconsin, will be performing the “Dance of the Eagle” Sunday afternoon.
Crafts, games, hourly presentations, American Dairy Treats food truck, and more are a part of this exciting weekend!
The Wonky Donkey Walk | September 16 & 23 | Wolcott Mill Metropark
Put on your hiking boots and let’s take Baron the donkey and his friend Cramer the miniature horse for a walk down by the river. We will find a nice spot to relax while we eat a snack and listen to the story The Wonky Donkey by Craig Smith. There will be an activity for you to take home to remember your walk with Baron the donkey!
Pressing for Cider | September 16 & 23 | Hudson Mills Metropark
At the intersection of North Territorial and Dexter-Pinckney Roads along the Huron River lie the remnants of a hamlet called Hudson with milling at its foundation. Let’s step back in history and celebrate the season by learning the technique of milling apples into cider. Once we finish the press, we’ll enjoy a taste fresh from a local mill!
Movies in the Parks | September 16 | Stony Creek Metropark
Join us for the second of three different movie nights at Stony Creek. This drive-in style movie for Top Gun: Maverick has space in the front for blankets and chairs, too.
Parking opens at 6:00 p.m. Movie starts at dusk!
Nature at Night Hike | September 16 | Oakwoods Metropark
The leaves rustle, a twig snaps, something scurries across the trail. Strange noises echo through the trees. What animals could it be? We’ll meander around the trails in search of the night life going on in the woods and learn about some of the creatures of the night.
Eco-Play: Dinosaur Digging & Fairy Magic | September 17 | Indian Springs Metropark
The risks and challenges of being outdoors provide rich opportunities for learning and problem-solving. Children are drawn to experiences that allow them to test the limits of their physical, intellectual, and emotional development.
This program series will work on developing skills through outdoor play and adventure. Educational activities, crafting, and guided hikes will explore exciting ways to turn backyard fun into an eco-friendly adventure the whole family can enjoy.
Let’s Go Outside Pre-K | September 18 | Stony Creek Metropark
You and your little ones are invited to participate in an outdoor nature adventure the third Monday of every month! We’ll explore with our senses and imagination outdoors, walking along the reflection trail by the nature center while searching for signs of animals, playing games, and doing fun activities along the way.
Each session, we’ll focus on seasonal changes and the plants and animals you might encounter at that time of year.
Homeschool Nature Club: Ecosystem Focus – Forest Discovery | September 21 | Indian Springs Metropark
Homeschool Nature Club is a monthly program geared towards homeschool children ages 7-15. For each class, we will split students into two age groups: 7-10 years old and 11–15 years old. Each month will cover a different topic with a lesson, hike, fun experiments, and activities. Please come dressed for the weather, as we will be heading outside for at least a portion of each class. This is a great chance to supplement your at-home learning!
Nature Explorers Afterschool Club | September 21 & 28 | Lake St. Clair Metropark
This afterschool science club will help students explore the exciting world of nature in our park! We’ll cover a different topic each week focusing on Michigan wildlife and the unique habitats we have at Lake St. Clair Metropark. Each program will have indoor and outdoor elements including guided hikes through the nature trails, discovery of plants and animals, crafts, and lots of fun!
Bats Abound | September 22 | Stony Creek Metropark
Discover the night-time world of Michigan’s native bats. We will dispel some myths, learn how important bats are to our ecosystem, and then head outside to look for our resident bats as they search for their insect prey.
Dragons & Damsels | September 23 | Oakwoods Metropark
We’ll hit the trail not to slay dragons and rescue damsels, but to explore dragonflies and damselflies. Join us to learn some fun facts about the aerial insects and their migration.
Clay Workshop: Pumpkins | September 23 | Hudson Mills Metropark
Join Curiouser Clay at Hudson Mills Metropark on Saturday, September 23rd from 1:00-3:00 p.m. as we create our own one-of-a-kind pinchpot pumpkins! No experience is necessary as the instructor leads you through all the steps necessary to create your own ceramic pumpkin!
Shelden Mountain Bike Fest | September 30 | Stony Creek Metropark
On Saturday, September 30, experience the thrill of the newly redeveloped Shelden Trails with fellow mountain bike enthusiasts, visit vendor and bike-related booths, enjoy some great food vendors, grab a beer to enjoy by the bonfire, and relax after hitting the trails with free s’mores from REI!
Beginner mountain bike clinics, demos, and group rides for ages 8 and up will ease new or young riders into the sport and introduce them to the trails. Two sessions of the Bike Demo and Beginner Clinic will be available and require registration. The GROM loop is a beginner loop that will introduce riders to the sport and allow you to enjoy beginner obstacles. This trail is handcycle accessible, too! A handcycle demonstration and clinic will be available.