100+ Summer Bucket List of Things To do in Michigan

lovelansing, pure michigan

100+ Summer Bucket List of Things To do in Michigan

You can find more Local Events and activities going on in the Mid-Michigan area and beyond!



Want more from the Mid-Michigan area? Be sure to subscribe to our newsletter (and add us to your email contact to ensure proper delivery)

Summer is officially here in Michigan. I love this time of year, #puremichigan is just beautiful.

With so many things to do and only a short amount of time to cram in these activities where do we start?

If you’re stumped or just looking for some new ideas to do with the family this summer that’s FREE or Budget-friendly, then check out this BIG list of summer bucket list of activities and ideas of things to do in Michigan.

lovelansing, pure michigan

*this list is constantly being updated, so be sure to check back for more Summer Bucket Ideas for Mid-Michigan!

Amusement Parks/Attractions:

This is not Michigan, but we all love a good time at Cedar Point, right? I have 10 different ways to save BIG money on your Cedar Point Tickets. Read it HERE

Michigan Adventures {Muskegon} Purchase your ticket online and save online! Tickets are $31.00 {Read my 29 AWESOME reasons WHY you need to add Michigan’s Adventure to your summer bucket list!}

Air Zoo {Portage/Battle Creek}

General Admission – $10
Includes access to all of the Air Zoo’s aircraft, exhibits and:

Best Value! Ultimate Ace Package – $16.50
Includes everything under the General Admission Package, PLUS:

Additional Attractions
TIGERS: Tracking a Legend – $6

Children 4 and younger are free.

FREE Bowling Events happening in the Mid-Michigan area {Free Event}

Free Skating Programs {Free Event}

Crossroads Village and Huckleberry Railroad { Flint} Tons of family fun

Places to visit Animals:

Creature Conservancy {Ann Arbor}

Dominoes Farm {Ann Arbor}

$5.00 regular pricing
10% discount for Seniors
Children 1 year and under free

Country Mill Farm– {Lansing}

Family Fun on the Farm- Cider Mill in Mid-Michigan. Pick your own apples, enjoy the Petty Zoo, Orchard Express Train and more.

Admission: FREE {FREE Activity}

MSU Dairy Store { East Lansing}

MSU Farms {East Lansing}

Check out the cattle, horses, chicken and sheep.

Admission- FREE {FREE Activity}

MSU Bug House {East Lansing}

Admission- Donations accepted

Preuss Pet Store {Lansing}- Come join us 4-5 pm on the first Sunday of each month for story time!  We will read a story together and follow it up with an activity that relates to the story. *Ages 5+*{Free event}

Come visit Pruess Pets and have a hands-on learning experience with animals of all different sorts! Or have the animals of Pruess Pets pay a visit to your classroom!  These experiences are great for children of all ages and can be set up to go along with any topic in the classroom. {1/2 hour in-store: $30.00 or1 hour in-store: $60.00}

-Please call Megan at 517-599-5656 or email Education@preusspets.com to reserve your class today!

Sea Life Aquarium of Michigan {Auburn Hills} Located in the Great Lakes Crossing Outlets, this 35,000 sq. feet Aquarium features more than 5,000 creatures, including six sharks. And they just introduced, Benson, the rescued green sea turtle to his 120,000 gallon ocean home!

Breakfast on the Farm Events (great way to see  the process of farm living and see animals) {FREE Event}

Parks & Playgrounds & Bounce Houses:

The Treehouse/Indoor Playground {Chelsea, Michigan}


Babies ages 0-12 months FREE
Kids ages 1-15 years old $7.00
Ages 16 and up FREE when accompanied by a child

Jungle Java/Indoor Playground {Ann Arbor, Canton, Clinton Township, Farmington Hills}

Children ages 2 and older: $7.00
Children ages 12-23 months: $3.00
Children under 12 months: FREE
Adults: FREE
3-month passes are available
Add-On Option: $2.00 for unlimited Laser

Extreme Fun {Lansing/Macomb}

Castaway Play Cafe {Howell}

Michigan’s Largest Indoor Play Structure, built for Kids and Adults so everyone can play!

Check for coupons!

Jumpin’ Jax Bounce Area {Lansing}

*Be sure to get on their email list. They send out specials via email. And check here for coupons!

play. {East Lansing}
Play. is a thoughtfully designed 2,600 square foot indoor playground and party space for children and their caregivers. It is a comfortable, clean, eco-friendly environment for parents to relax and enjoy coffee while their children play nearby. Their developmentally-rich venue includes areas for children’s gross and fine motor skill development, imaginative play and cognitive stimulation. Find groupon deals for play here. 

Splash Pads:

Hawk Island {Lansing} {FREE Activity}

{Free/non-residents may have to pay a $3 entrance free}

more on Ingham County Parks

Kensington Metro-Park {Kensington}


  • Adults – $5
  • Children (2-15) & seniors – $4
  • Children under the age of 2 – Free

Twilight Rate (5 p.m. until closing)

  • Adults – $4
  • Children (2-15) & seniors – $3
  • Children under the age of 2 – Free


Potter Park Zoo {Lansing} (and the camels are back)

Resident Adult $6.00
Non-Resident Adult $12.00
Resident Senior $5.00
Non-Resident Senior $11.00
All Children (ages 3-12) $4.00
All Children Under 3 FREE

Zoo Days will be happening July 110th-July 11th. On those days admission is just $2 for each person w/ free parking.

Parking is $3/$5 (For non residents)

Binder Park Zoo {Battle Creek}

Admission Rates
Adults: $14.25
Seniors: $13.25
Children (2-10): $12.25
Children (Under 2): FREE
Binder Park Zoo Members: FREE (Must show ID)

*Military get a $1.00 discount

Get more information here

Detroit Zoo

General Admission:

*purchase online prices:

  • $13-18 / Adults 19 years – 61
  • $10-15 / Children, 2 years – 18
  • $10-15 / Seniors, 62+
    • + Parking / $8

Same-day prices at admission gates:

  • $18 / Adults 19 years – 61
  • $15 / Children, 2 years – 18
  • $15 / Seniors, 62+
  • $15 / Active military with ID
    • + Parking / $8

Detroit Zoological Society Members – Free

Parking $6

Toledo Zoo

Current Admission Rates:

Under 2 Years FREE
Children (under 12) $16.00
Adults $19.00
Seniors $16.00
($2 off for Lucas County)

$7 for Parking

*Buy your tickets online to save a $1 per admission ticket!

***look for discount tickest at Kroger stores in Michigan and Ohio!

John Ball Zoo {Grand Rapids}

Adults (ages 13-61) $8.50 $12.50 $8.50
Seniors (ages 62 and up) $7.50 $10.00 $7.50
Children (ages 2 – 12) $7.50 $10.00 $7.50
Children (1 and under) Free Free Free
College Students (must present valid School ID) $7.50 $11.00 $7.50
Military Discount (must have valid military ID –
available to active & Veteran US Military
personnel and their spouses)
$6.50 $10.50 $6.50

Great Lakes Zoological Society {Ann Arbor}

lovelansing, pure michigan


Impression 5 {Lansing}

Adults: $8.50
Seniors: $7.00
Children, 1 & older: $8.50
Children, up to 1 year old: FREE

Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum {East Lansing}

FREE Admission {FREE Activity}

Turner-Dodge House

Admission- Adults, kids 13 and up $5, Children 12 and under are FREE

Michigan Historical Museum and Archives of Michigan {Lansing} {Free admission on Sunday}

The flagship of the Michigan Historical Museum System, the Michigan Historical Museum offers you Michigan’s rich past, from the time of the state’s earliest peoples to the late 20th century.

Adults (18+) – $6

Seniors (65+) – $4

Youth (6-17) – $2 (optional)

Children up to 5 years – Free

Michigan Walk of Fame {Lansing}

Ann Arbor Hands On Museum {Ann Arbor}

  • $12.50 for Adults and Children
  • $5 after 5pm on Thursday only
  • Free for Babies 0-23 months

Michigan Science Center {Detroit}

  • Explore 2 package (check site for more info) – $24 for adults, $21 for children (2-12), $6 for members.
  • Explore 1 package (check site for more info)- $19 for adults, $16 for children (2-12), $3 for members.
  • General admission is $14/adult, $11/child 12 and under or senior citizen (60+).
    Children under age two are free.

Henry Ford Museum {Detroit}

  • Henry Ford Museum – Adult $ 23.00
  • Henry Ford Museum – Youth (3-12) $ 17.25
  • Henry Ford Museum – Child (2 and under) $ 0.00
  • Henry Ford Museum – Senior (62+) $ 21.00

**when you buy online, you will save a few bucks (also look online for combo deals)

Greenfield Village{ Detroit}

***be sure to check for combo packages for the museum and village!

Imagination Station {Toledo}

Big Kids (13 – 64): $12
• Kids (3 – 12): $11
• Seniors (65+): $10
• Children 2 & under: Free

Kids N Stuff Children’s Museum {Albion, Michigan}

Admission- $6.50 for Adults and children over the age of 1

Mid Michigan Children’s Museum {Saginaw, Michigan}

Members Free
Children under 24 months Free
Guests age 2–59 $7.50
Guests age 60+ $6.50


Eaton County Fair

When: July 9, 2018 – July 14, 2018

Where: Eaton County Fair, 1025 S. Cochran Ave, Charlotte, Mi

Fowlerville Family Fair {Fowlerville Fairgrounds}When: July 23rd- July 28th, 2018

Clinton County 4H Youth Fair {St. Johns} July 15th- July 21, 2018

Ingham County Fair {Mason}

When: July 30th- August 4th, 2018

Jackson County Fair {Jackson}

When: August 5th- 11th, 2018

Frontier Days {Charlotte}  September 5th- 9th, 2018



Lansing Juneteenth Celebration & African American Parade June 14-16th, 2018
Lansing Beer Fest, June 16th, 2018 {Lansing/REO town}
Mackinac Island- Lilac Festival, June 9th-June 17th, 2018
Red Cedar Jubilee June 18th- June 25, 2018

National Morel Mushroom Festival, Boyne City,  May 17th-20th {see more things to do in Petoskey}

Curwood Festival {Owosso}

When: June 7th-10th, 2018

See website for more information/directions, etc. {go here}

Festival of the Sun & Moon {Lansing} Make one of the shortest nights of the year count at Festival of the Moon. Cool off on a warm summer night with a glass of cold craft-brewed beer while listening to rockin regional and national bands.  6/23rd- 6/11 PM—6/24th  3-10 PM

Happening 6/23rd(Moon) – 6/24th (Sun) : Festival of the Moon: Get more information on their website.

Summer Solstice Jazz Festival {East Lansing} When: 6/23-6/24 {FREE Event}

Yankee Doodle Days Festival {Grand Ledge} When: 6/20-6/23 {some parts of events are free}

Delta Rocks {Delta Township} When: June 24th {FREE Event}

National Cherry Festival, Traverse City, June 30th- July 8th, 2018 {FREE Event}

Old Town Scrapefest {Lansing} When: 7/13th -7/14th  Scrapfest is a one-of-a-kind festival that celebrates art, creativity, and resource reuse. Teams of artists will transform up to 10,000 LBS of scrap metal into sculptural masterpieces, which will be auctioned off during the two-day celebration.  Don’t miss this exciting weekend featuring artisan booths, food, drink, and live music.

Hot Air Jubilee {Jackson} When: July 14th- July 16th, 2017 {FREE Event} $5 for parking

The Michigan Shakespeare Festival {Jackson} is HUGE in the Mid-Michigan every year. It’s happening this year from 7/12th- 8/19th. Be sure to check out more details on their website.

The Common Ground Musical Festival in Lansing is another huge event. It takes place this year 7/6-7/9. Read my tips on what to expect at Common Ground this year in Lansing. 

  • Ziplining, hanging out in a hammock and the color run Lansing will also be taking place during the Common Ground Festival.

Rockin’ the Hills {Brooklyn/Irish Hills} When: July 14th, 2018

Lansing Jazz Festival {Lansing} When: August 3rd- August 4th, 2018 FREE Event

Howell Melon Festival {Howell} When: August 17th- 19th, 2018 FREE Event

St. Johns Mint Festival {St. Johns} When: August 19th- August 12th, 2018

Michigan State Fair {Novi} When: August 30th- September 3rd, 2018

ArtPrize {Grand Rapids} When: September 19th – October 7th, 2018  {FREE Event}

Find more Fairs & Festivals happening all across Michigan HERE

Waterparks/Aquatic Center:

East Lansing Aquatic Center {East Lansing}

Fun for the whole family! The East Lansing Family Aquatic Center provides a safe and family-oriented aquatic experience for visitors of all ages. Aquatic features include a 190-foot tube water slide, 140-foot body water slide, a splash park, drop slide, diving board, youth frog slide and water-play structures as well as a wet/dry sand play area, large sunbathing deck, zero-depth pool entry and concession area.

See rates HERE

Turtle Cove Family Aquatic Center {Belleville}

Adult (48″ and above) $10
Children (under 48″) $8
Children (under 30″) Free
Twilight (after 5pm) $6
Organized Youth Group (Monday-Friday, minimum 20) $6/person (pre-registration)
Coin Operated Lockers $.50

Children 10 and under must be accompanied by an adult.

*Must be at least 48″ or taller to ride the large waterslides.

Jump Island { Brighton Recreation Area/Livingston County}

It offers the “ultimate inflatable water park experience.” The course includes an inflatable iceberg, inflatable slides, runways and other obstacles that give the visitors the ability to balance, walk, run, or slide on water.

The WhoaZone { Holly Recreation Area/Oakland County}

This waterpark course offers four different routes with four different challenge levels, ranging from easy to difficult. Visitors can climb, jump, crawl and slide on the gigantic springboard, semi-circle step, the wiggle bridge, half-pipe and more.

Water Warrior Island { Lake Michigamme/Van Riper State Park in Marquette County}

This floating playground includes 20-foot water slides, rock climbing walls, trampolines, floating walkways and a ninja warrior-like obstacle course.

Free Swimming:

Moores Park Pool : {Lansing}
Normal Pool Hours are: 12pm to 4pm and 5pm to 8pm  Monday thru Sunday
Pool is Free and Open to the Public during these times
Moores Park Pool will remain open thru August 16th

Hunter Park Pool -{Lansing}
Normal Pool Hourse are:  12pm to 4pm and 5pm to 8pm  – Monday thru Sunday
Pool is Free and Open to the Public during these hours
Hunter Park Pool will be open thru August 29th

Nature Centers/Cider Mills:

Uncle John’s Cider Mill and Fruit House Winery {Lansing/St. Johns}

Admission- FREE

Woldumar Nature Center {Lansing}

Admission- Members are FREE, Non-Members- $1 Trail donation

Harris Nature Center {Lansing}

Admission: FREE

Fenner Nature Center {Lansing}

Admission: FREE, Donations welcome

Planet Walk {Lansing}

200 Museum Dr. 517 485 8116

Lansing River Trail {Lansing}

Admission- Free

MSU Horticulture Garden {East Lansing}



Drive in Movies in the Oakland County Area

Free Movies in the Park {Lansing}

FREE Movies happening in the Mid-Michigan area

Capital Area Film Fest {Lansing}

Drive-in Movie: Coco, August 10th, 2018 {Lansing} More information here.

Free Concerts & Other Locations to check out:

Check out a list of TONS of FREE Summer Concerts in the Mid-Michigan area!

Capital Area BMX Track at Gier Park

2809 N. East St. Lansing 517 367-8990

You can’t come to Lansing without checking out a Lugnuts game!


Summer Bucket List of Summer Activities for Mid-Michigan and Beyond

More Summer Bucket List Ideas Beyond Mid-Michigan

If you’re in the Ann Arbor area, be sure to check out Ann Arbor with kids to find more local events

Southeast Michigan readers? You can find more local events for your area by visiting Mrs. Weber’s Neighborhood.

Near the Royal Oak/Ferndale area? Check out  Ferndale.Macaroni Kid to find the latest local events! And the Crazy Nuts Mom is sharing more fun ideas you can do in #puremichigan

GR Kids has a great list of 31 Summer activities to do with the kids this year! Along with an essential West Michigan Summer Guide.


Previous Hooray for Summer! | DOLLAR L.I.T. is back at Applebee's!
Next Meijer: Red Gold Tomatoes as low as .45 cents


  1. August 4, 2014

    For out door theater the Turner Street Theater would be a family fun free event in Lansing that eveyone should come out and see. Old Town Lansing and the Capital City Film Festival come together to put on great movies each year.

  2. Sydney Brodeur
    April 12, 2015

    you should look into including Curwood festival and castle on this list!

    • April 13, 2015

      Ok, thanks Sydney, I will check it out and add it!!

  3. Wow! This is one great list! Thanks for the time compiling this out. I will surely link to this content of yours at one of my future MICHIGAN blog posts 🙂 Thanks Tatanisha!

    • July 6, 2015

      Thanks Ron! I’m slowly working on growing this list. There’s so much to do in Michigan!

  4. A.G.
    August 2, 2017

    Hillsdale area has free movie nights in the summer – thanks to our utility board.

    • August 4, 2017

      Awesome, glad to hear that. I’ll add info to my post about it! Thank you!

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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