Gov. Rick Snyder proclaims Sept. 20-27 as Michigan Trails Week

Enjoy free vehicle admission to state parks on Sept. 27

Tuesday, Sept. 16, 2014

LANSING, Mich. – Gov. Rick Snyder has proclaimed Sept. 20-27 as Trails Week in Michigan. The week celebrates Michigan’s more than 12,000 miles of trails and waterways.

“Michigan’s trail system is one of our state’s real jewels,” Snyder said. “It provides unlimited recreational opportunities to people of all ages and skill levels. Being active outdoors is a great way to stay healthy and celebrate our state’s beauty and abundant natural resources.”

All weeklong statewide special events and volunteer opportunities will be hosted by local communities and organizations in partnership with the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Michigan Recreation and Park Association and the Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance.

On Sept. 27, in celebration of National Public Lands Day – the nation’s largest volunteer cleanup day - Recreation Passports and vehicle entry fees will be waived at state parks and recreation areas, state forest campgrounds, nonmotorized state trailhead parking, and state boat launches. In addition, license requirements are waived for all off-road vehicles on Sept. 27 and 28. All other laws and regulations must still be followed.

“Michigan is a national leader in the number of miles of trails,” said DNR Director Keith Creagh. “These trails help improve Michigan’s quality of life, support local economies and provide increased opportunities to spend time with family and friends in Michigan’s out-of-doors.”

Earlier this year Snyder signed legislation designating the “Pure Michigan Trail Network.” The designation supports statewide development of existing trails and waterways allowing the director of the DNR with approval of the Michigan Economic Development Corp. to name Pure Michigan Tails, Waterways and Trail Towns. The bills also expand volunteer activities to include trail upkeep and maintenance programs.

“Using these trails in the months before and after Michigan Trails Week is a key to fitness and well-being,” said Ron Olson, chief of the DNR Parks and Recreation Division. “It’s an enjoyable, low-cost way to experience the state’s natural resources while keeping healthy.”

As Michigan’s trail system continues to grow and improve, a trail proposed by the governor in his Energy and Environment Special Message will link existing trails connecting Belle Isle in Detroit to Ironwood in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The statewide trail will provide year-round recreational opportunities for residents and visitors alike.

“The Pure Michigan Trails package will allow the best of the best of Michigan trails to be promoted across the country on a par with all of our Pure Michigan attractions,” said Nancy Krupiarz, executive director of Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance. “It’s time that the No. 1 trails state elevate the visibility of these assets for tourism and recreation.”

For a current list of statewide Trails Week events visit www.michigan.gov/trailsweek.

If interested in hosting a Trails Week event visit www.michigan.gov/trailsweek for an event planning toolkit. Send event photos and information to mitrailweek@gmail.com for a chance to have your event featured on the DNR Trails Week webpage.

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