It is the first week in March and for many people the promise of spring is large in their minds, but for some, there is still the last hurrah of winter to be found. If you look hard enough, you will find it. Last year, the temperature on March 4 topped out at 35 degrees, and if you look at past years, there is a good chance that winter fun will be on tap for at least a couple more days. So don’t fret if you like the cold; odds are there will be a little more winter fun.
The Rink At Campus Martius Park
800 Woodward Ave.
Detroit, MI 48226
Located in the heart of downtown Detroit, the Campus Martius rink is the place to skate in the city and it is only open for two more days, so grab your skates and head that way. Skate rentals are available for $3 and there are also warming centers and skate sharpening for $5 for those who have not tried the thin blades out in a while. If you have not yet skated on this rink, you are missing one of the jewels of Detroit and you owe it to yourself to head down before the season is over.
Boyne Highlands Resort
600 Highland Drive
Harbor Springs, MI 49740
Sure it may be a bit of a drive from Detroit, but if you are a hardcore winter lover, upper Michigan is the place to go. Last year, which anyone would call a bad year for winter recreation, skiers were still on the slopes in the first week of March. With the cold weather we have been experiencing this year, you will be sure to find a good snow base on the hills and plenty to do. On March 9, there is the Brew-Ski Festival where you will be able to sample over 150 craft brews and enjoy entertainment and evening parties. Of course, there will be food along with the specialty beers and soft drinks. Throughout the month, as long as snow stays on the ground, there are special rates for skiers and all-around fun for anyone who craves the white stuff.
Huron Clinton Metroparks
13000 High Ridge Drive
Brighton, MI 48114
Depending upon how the weather holds here in southeast Michigan, one of the best places around to enjoy cross country skiing, skating or even a walk along the trials is at Kensington Metropark. The problem with the skiing end of things is that this is Michigan and the weather can change at any minute, but there is always hope that snow will return at any moment, if only for a day or two. There are groomed trails at many of the parks and at Huron Meadows, you will find both skate-style and classic cross country trails. At Oakwoods Metropark, there is the chance to head out cross country to break your own trails. At Lake St. Clair Metropark, there are 2.5 miles of trails, perfect for beginners to try their luck.
Pine Knob Resort
7778 Sashabaw Road
Clarkston, MI 48348
If the snow sticks around in the region or temperatures are low enough, you will be able to find skiing at local resorts. One that offers the most when it comes to making snow is Pine Knob. Located near Clarkston, this resort is one of the largest in southeast Michigan and offers 17 runs for skiers to try their luck on. For beginners, there are the easier “bunny hills” and the magic carpet, which is a synthetic surface that offers first timers the chance to get their ski legs in shape.
Cass Benton Park
Edward Hines Dr.
Northville, MI 48168
Located along Edward Hines Drive, just north of Six Mile Road, you will find Cass Benton Park and a sledding hill that has been calling to outdoors lovers for years. If the weather cooperates, grab the kids and the sleds and head over. This portion of Hines Park puts you close to Plymouth where you can stop for a snack or grab a beverage after you have some fun on the hill. Other options along Hines Drive are just about anywhere you find other people sledding. There are a lot of hills along this parkway offering the chance to take a slide on the sled at more than one location.
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Award winning freelance writer and photographer Lawrence DiVizio is based in Southeast Michigan and works to convey in words and images the world around us. His work can be found at Examiner.com.