Ludington State Park Weekly Programs
There's always something interesting going on at the Ludington State Park during the summer. A variety of special summer programs are offered that are both educational and fun. Most programs are suitable for all ages, so bring the entire family and enjoy!
Below were the last set of programs from 2015. New programs start in June and will be updated when information becomes available. Check below for details on select programs.
Park History Walk, 10am, Hamlin Dam.
Michigan Mammals, 2-4pm, Lake Michigan Beach House.
Invasion of the Water Aliens, 2-4pm, Lake Michigan Beach House.
Arrows Away, 6-8pm, Archery Range behind Amphitheater.
Craft Adventure, 10am, Cedar Campground Host Site.
Live Michigan Reptiles, 3-5pm, Lake Michigan Beach House.
Live Snakes Presentation, 7pm, Amphitheater.
Michigan Sand and its Dunes, 2-4pm, Lake Michigan Beach House.
Tour Through the Night Sky, sunset, Lake Michigan Beach House.
Ongoing Programs Throughout the Year
Spring, Summer, Fall. 2 hrs, at Archery Range near Amphitheater.
Taught by certified USA Archery Instructors. Designed for beginners and families. This activity is recommended for ages 7 years old and up, and participants 15 and younger should be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Safety is emphasized around the range at all times.
"Hook, Line, and Sinker"
Spring, Summer, Fall. 90 minutes, at Hamlin Dam.
This is a "learn to fish" children's program, where participants will experience the fun of fishing through games and fishing in the river. Parents are required to accompany their child. Near the end of the program there is a fun fishing tournament to see you can catch the most Round Head Gobies, which is an invasive aquatic species that hurts the native fish population. Fishing equipment is provided free of charge, but for those 17 and older, you must have a fishing license, which can be purchased at one of the many sporting goods stores in Ludington.
"Lost Lake Canoe and Kayak Tour"
Summer. 2 hrs, at the Hamlin Beach House.
Join park staff for a fun guided boat tour through Lost Lake and along the Hamlin Lake shoreline. Hear about and see the unique features of these two inland lakes. Children under 17 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Bring your own canoe/kayak or rent one from the Park Concessions. Rental boats are limited so reserve yours ahead of time.
"Exploring the Dunes"
Spring, Summer, Fall. 1 hr, Lake Michigan Beach House
Take a fun guided walk through the sand dunes to see and learn about this fragile environment. Experience the diverse and unique plant life and the ways animals adapt to this harsh environment. Discover the threats occurring in the sand dunes. This walk is mostly off-trail and can be strenuous.
"Night Sky Tour"
Spring, Summer, Fall. 2 hrs, begins at sunset, Lake Michigan Beach House.
While enjoying a beautiful sunset at the beach you can listen to the presenter prepare you for an interesting tour of the starry night sky. You'll learn fun facts and tips as they lead you through the stars, planets and constellations. If conditions are good, telescopes are brought out for you to get an up-close view of heavenly objects.
"Michigan Geological History, the Proof is in the Rocks"
Spring, Summer, Fall. 1 hr, Warming Shelter.
Come join the fun as you discover the answers to previous life in the park. The answers are hidden in the rocks!
"Who Lives in the Forest & Where are the Trees Going?"
Year-round. 90 minutes, Warming Shelter.
This program takes you out into the forest dune lands to discover what is living out there and how the forest provides for their survival. You also get to see what good and bad changes have occurred among the trees as invasive species continue to attack the forest. It's a relaxing hike under nature's canopy!
"Park's History, Walking Tour"
Summer, Fall. 90 minutes, Hamlin Dam or Lake Michigan Beach House.
Take a walk through Ludington State Park's history as you explore the park for evidence of past eras. Your guide takes you to the 165 year old Logging Era ruins and cemetery; site of one of the earliest Life Saving Stations on Lake Michigan; an actual shipwreck on the shoreline; a "Pork Barrel" structure paid for by federal tax payer funds in 1912; and historic structures still being used from the earliest days of the building of Ludington State Park.
"Salmon Are Running"
Fall. 1 hr, Hamlin Dam.
Every year hundreds of adult Chinook salmon leave Lake Michigan to run up the rivers that feed into Lake Michigan. From mid-September through October, these salmon make the journey to spawn in the rivers. You will leave with a better understanding of how the Michigan Department of Natural Resources manages our water ways for a healthier aquatic environment.
Autumn Color Hike"
Fall. 1 hr, Hamlin Dam.
Ludington State Park and along the Big Sable River host a spectacular rainbow of colors from late September through October. Join the park interpreter on a relaxing walk along the river to view and learn about this natural exhibit of colors. You'll also learn about how the animals are getting ready for the cold winter months ahead.
"Guided Nature Walk on Snowshoes
Winter. 90 minutes, Warming Shelter.
Snowshoeing is a fun activity, and the Park staff will lead you through an enjoyable guided nature work within the Ludington State Park. If you don't own a pair, the Park lends out 50 pairs of snowshoes. Walks are held on Saturdays in January and February. No reservations are necessary but please call ahead for snow conditions.
For more information, contact the Ludington State Park at (231) 843-9261. Children under the age of 15 must be accompanied by an adult. A Recreation Passport is required for entry to park.
Ludington State Park Contact InfoCamping Reservations (Michigan DNR) (800) 447-2757 or Ludington State Park Michigan DNR reservations
Ludington State Park Local Office/Special Programs (231) 843-2423
Concessions & Watercraft Rental (231) 843-1888
Snowshoe Class Reservations (231) 843-9261
More Ludington State Park Info...
Outdoors in the Ludington Area...
For more activities & attractions, check out these additional links for Things to Do in West Michigan:
Ludington Activities & Things to Do -- Play on a beautiful beach, take a tour at Historic White Pine Village, or explore the barn quilt trail, murals or sculptures in the county--Ludington offers many fun things to do for the entire family!
Have Fun in Manistee, Michigan -- Explore Manistee's historic downtown district and riverwalk, hike the Manistee National Forest, canoe on the Manistee River, and more.
Hamlin Lake -- Just 4 miles north of Ludington, Hamlin Lake is a great destination for boating, fishing and climbing dunes! The Hamlin Lake shoreline is also part of the Ludington State Park.
Silver Lake Sand Dunes -- Visiting the Silver Lake Sand Dunes makes for a terrific vacation because you can take your off-road vehicle for a spin on the scenic sand dunes overlooking Lake Michigan and Silver Lake.
Things to Do in Pentwater, Michigan -- Nothing is quite like the quaint, artsy, harbortown village of Pentwater. Don't miss the popular Charles Mears State Park beach on Pentwater's Lake Michigan shoreline.
Lots of Activities in Scottville, Michigan -- Explore the Riverside Park along the National Scenic Pere Marquette River.
Canoeing or Fishing on the Pere Marquette River -- Many boat liveries offer canoe rentals.
Also, check out West Michigan Guides and our locally produced WestMichigan.MichBiz.com directory for our largest lists of Things to Do in West Michigan.