GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (ABC 4)- There’s no doubt summer in West Michigan is filled with fun activities and events for families to enjoy and explore! And, to help us make the most of this exciting season, Maranda’s sharing her 2023 Guide to Summer Fun.

Get up close to animals and nature in Michigan!

Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park

Frederik Meijer Gardens has fun all summer with children’s activities every day of the week including music, art and science! Learn more here

John Ball Zoo

John Ball Zoo has so many animals to see and lots to learn. Check out all the fun the zoo offers here.

Binder Park Zoo

Open seven days a week and kids 2 and under get in for free. Check out their website for daily hours and current exhibits here.  

Blandford Nature Center

Blandford Nature Center has all kinds of outdoor fun for your family to enjoy. Check out their Summer Adventure Series, Nature Buds or the other fun programming here.

Boulder Ridge Wild Animal Park

The Boulder Ridge Wild Animal Park in Alto offers many memorable and wild animal experiences. You can check out all the fun here.

Calvin University Ecosystem Preserve and Native Gardens

The Calvin Ecosystem Preserve and Native Gardens is a fantastic place to be out and about in nature as a family.  Learn more about it here.   

Critter Barn

Spend a day learning about farming, agriculture and nature all while interacting with adorable animals! Learn more here.

Visit the Critter Barn_54143

Dow Gardens-Midland

Dow Gardens is 110 acres of annuals and perennials featuring distinctive bridges, towering pines and water features.  Admission is affordable and you can learn more information here.  

Fort Custer State Recreation Area

Fort Custer State Recreation Area is a great spot to have a fun family outing. They offer camping, hiking and biking trails. Learn more here

Frugthaven Farm

Check out Frugthaven Farm this summer! They have great outdoor spaces to soak up the summer weather. Learn more here.  

Hidden Lake Gardens

MSU Canopy Walk Hidden Lake Gardens- Michigan State University’s Hidden Lakes Garden offers 12 miles of hiking trails and now a canopy walk.  Learn more here

Howard Christensen Nature Center

The nature center offers a variety of trails for family hikers. They also have several different fun events taking place. Learn more here.   

Howell Nature Center

The Howell Nature Center offers loads of fun this summer! Make new memories experiencing wildlife, zip lining and more here. 

Hudsonville Nature Center

Take on this 76-acre nature preserve of woodlands, prairies and wetlands featuring hiking trails, lookouts, wildflowers and picnic areas. Learn more here.    

Kalamazoo Nature Center

Learn a thing or two at the Kalamazoo Nature Center! Explore 15+ miles of trails and unique interactive exhibits. Find additional details here.

Karin’s Horse Connection and Legacy Stable

If you want to horse around this summer, visit Legacy Stables. Register for riding lessons or even a one-time ride here.

Leila Arboretum Society Battle Creek

The Leila Arboretum in Battle Creek is a free and wonderful place to take the kids to explore! Find more information and learn more about what the Leila Arboretum offers here.  

Michigan Legacy Art Park

Explore trails, art in nature, birdwatching and seeing beautiful wildflowers. Find additional information here.  

Ott Biological Preserve Battle Creek

The Ott Biological Preserve in Battle Creek offers hiking and biking with great views of two spring lakes. It is 298 acres free to the public, and more details can be found here

Outdoor Discovery

Outdoor Discovery provides tons of opportunities to explore nature. They have trails, programs and camps. Find more information here.   

Potter Park Zoo

If you are looking for an adventure, take a day trip to Lansing and check out the Potter Park Zoo. You can learn about animals they feature and other information here

potter park zoo black rhino

Pierce Cedar Creek Institute

Experience the beauty of 850 acres of wetlands, forests, marshes, streams lakes and more. Learn more here.   

Beat the heat indoors at these Michigan attractions


Air Zoo-An out-of-this-world experience awaits at the Air Zoo! Discover over 100 air and spacecraft, and indoor amusement park-style rides. You can learn more information about the Air Zoo here.  
Grand Rapids Public Museum– Get lost in three floors of exhibits focusing on the history of Grand Rapids. You can learn more information about the Grand Rapids Public Museum and everything they offer here.    
Coopersville Farm Museum-The Coopersville Farm Museum is filled with tons of cool artifacts and information. Check out all of the fun here
Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum– Explore the life and presidency of Gerald R. Ford at this historic museum in Grand Rapids. More information can be located here
Gilmore Car Museum– If you like cool cars and learning about Michigan’s automotive history, then head to the Gilmore Car Museum. You can learn more information about the museum here.   
Grand Rapids Children’s Museum– The Grand Rapids Children’s Museum is a great place for kids to explore! Purchase tickets, view times, as well as the exhibits they offer here.    
Holland Museum-Discover over 90,000 artifacts in the museum’s collection, from money to art to books to stamps. Find out more about the museum here
Kalamazoo Valley Museum– Roam around three floors of interactive exhibits focusing on the history of Kalamazoo, science and other fun topics. Learn about the museum here.    
Lakeshore Museum Center– There is always something new to learn at the Lakeshore Museum Center! See more here
Lawton Heritage Museum- The Lawton Heritage Museum depicts farming, wine and grape processing techniques from the Lawton area circa 1900-1940. Find more details here.     
The Mitten Children’s Museum. The Mitten Children’s Museum in South Haven is a non-profit organization teaching children of all ages to have a love for learning. See more information here.     
Muskegon Museum of Art– The Muskegon Museum of Art offers several different collections of artwork. Explore featured exhibits and more here
Sandcastles Children’s Museum-The Sandcastles Children’s Museum in Ludington has many different hands-on activities and exhibits for you and your child to explore the world around them. See more information about the Sandcastles Children’s Museum here.    
Schmaltz Geology Museum and Dinosaur Park– Western Michigan University offers a free geology and mineral museum to explore. Right next to the museum is the dinosaur park, where you can see seven scale model replicas of these fascinating creatures. Learn more here.     
Tri-Cities Historical Museum Grand Haven-The Tri-Cities Museum in Grand Haven features many events and fun exhibits. You can learn more about the museum here.   


Griff’s Icehouse- Griff’s Icehouse features open skate times on the weekends and on weekdays. View times and prices here.   
Patterson Ice Center-If you’re a fan of ice skating, then make sure you check out Patterson Ice Center! See open skate times and more details here.   
Rollerworld– Rollerworld in Kalamazoo offers a variety of open roller-skating times. View skating times and the types of fun to have here
Rollxscape Skating Center-Get your roller-skating and gaming on! Find all the fun details here.   
Tarry Hall Roller Rink– Tarry Hall Roller Rink offers different open skating times as well as lessons for those who do not know how to skate. Find more information about the skating Rink here 
Walker Ice and Fitness-The Walker Ice and Fitness Center has several open skate times this summer. Check out their open skate times here


Kids Bowl For free-This free program gives kids two free games of bowling every day at participating bowling alleys. You can learn more and register here
BAM! Entertainment Center– With bowling, laser tag and an arcade, there is something for everyone at BAM! Entertainment Center. Find more information here
Hudsonville Lanes– Overdue for some family fun? Check out Hudsonville Lanes, where you’ll find classes and specials for bowling. Learn more here.   
Northland Lanes Bowling– Find more information about the lanes here. Calling ahead for open bowling availability is highly encouraged. 
Sherman Bowling CenterBattle Creek– Sherman Bowling Center has you covered for making this summer the best yet. Explore all the fun being offered here


Craig’s Cruisers- Craig’s Cruisers is a one-stop-shop for all things family fun! Jump on trampolines, explore indoor and outdoor attractions, and spend hours creating memories with loved ones. Learn more here.
Great Lakes Crossing Outlets– Home to the LEGOLAND Discovery Center and Peppa Pig World of Play, Great Lakes Crossing Outlets offers fun ways for kids and families to enjoy a world of creativity and hands-on play. See more here.
Action Wake Park- Have a blast at Action Wake Park’s full-size cable park. New this year is the Aqua Park. Learn more here.      
Allegan Event– If you enjoy climbing and swinging on fun indoor courses, then check out Allegan Event! Learn more here.   
Amped Virtual Reality– Experience a new reality at Amped Virtual Reality this summer. You can learn more about all the virtual reality fun they offer here.   
Battle GR– Battle GR is inviting kids to spend the day playing laser tag, archery tag, dodgeball, yard games and more. See all the fun it has to offer here.   
Bricks 4 Kids– Between summer camps, STEAM activities and virtual reality activities, kids can create the summer itineraries of their dreams. View all the details here
Gymco Open Gym-Open gym is a one-hour playtime for both kids and parents. Enjoy trampolines, rope, swing bars and more. You can learn more about the open gym here.      
Kingdom Sports in Portage- Offering lessons, camps and leagues for soccer, Kingdom Sports in Portage has a lot to do and experience. You can learn about all the options they have for soccer here.   
Klassic Arcade Gobles- The Klassic Arcade features three locations in West Michigan, two in Gobles and one in Paw Paw. Enjoy classic 1980s arcade games, pinball, pop in a glass bottle and more. Learn more here.   
Launch Grand Rapids– Explore the fun possibilities, from trampoline courts to attractions for hours of family fun. You can learn about general admission and other attractions here
Rebounderz– Rebounderz offers so much jumping and fun! See what is offered here
Revel and Roll Kalamazoo– If you are looking for some indoor fun this summer, then look to Revel and Roll in Kalamazoo off of Stadium Drive. More details can be found here.    

Sit back, relax and snack on popcorn while watching movies at local parks and theatres

Jam along to various genres of music at these family-friendly West Michigan summer concerts

Benjamin’s Hope All-Abilities-Friendly Summer Concert Series 

The Benjamin’s Hope all-abilities-friendly summer concert series has been quite the hit. This summer series is all-inclusive and is a great time for kids and adults. You can learn more about the concert series here.

Benjamin’s Hope Summer Concert Series in Holland

The Benjamin’s Hope Summer Concert series takes place July 20, Aug. 17 and Sept. 4. Enjoy this free family friendly series, learn more here.   

Kellogg Arena Summer Series in Battle Creek

Mark your calendars for some free fun and outdoor entertainment happening in downtown Battle Creek. You can learn more information about the Kellogg Arena Summer Series as well as the Battle Creek Farmers Market here.

2023 Showboat Sizzlin’ Summer Concerts

The Lowell Showboat Sizzlin’ Summer Concerts are taking place every Thursday night from June 15 until Aug. 24. Find more details about the concerts here.   

Rollin’ On the River Downtown Allegan

Rollin’ On the River is a free, weekly concert series held on Friday nights at the Allegan Riverfront Stage. The series features talented musicians of various genres. See more details here.   

Frugthaven Farm 2023 Music Series

The 2023 Summer Music Series at Frugthaven Farm kicks off on June 15 and ends Aug. 24! You can learn more information here.         



Kalamazoo State Theatre

There’s nothing like listening to awesome music, especially at a historic venue. Check out the Kalamazoo State Theatre’s lineup of upcoming shows here!

Did you know Michigan has several designated areas for you to enjoy the night sky? Find preserves near you

Internationally designated dark sky parks 


Grand Rapids Public Museum

Enjoy an out-of-this-world experience at the Roger B. Chaffee Planetarium! Find their full schedule and shows being offered here.  

A photo of Roger Chaffee at the Roger B. Chaffee Planetarium in Grand Rapids. (July 19, 2019)

Kalamazoo Valley Museum

The Kalamazoo Valley Museum provides the community with many fun and educational planetarium shows. Check out the schedule here

Abrams Planetarium

The Abrams Planetarium in East Lansing is a fun place to learn about the night sky. Discover the museum and its planetarium showings here

Catch some sun and play some fetch with your furry friends in West Michigan dog parks

Get creative with these Arts and Crafts experiences!

Grand Rapids Art Museum

Thanks to Meijer, Tuesdays at the Museum are free as well as Thursday nights. Learn more here.

Kalamazoo Candle Company

Create your own signature candle scent at the Kalamazoo Candle Company! See more here.

Kalamazoo Institute of Arts

Partnering with several different institutions across the nation, there is always something fun and interesting to explore. View additional details here.

These Michigan day trips make the perfect family getaway

Click the map markers to discover a unique Michigan location:

Nothing quite spells summertime in Michigan than delicious, fresh-grown fruit that you can pick yourself

Experience the joy of reading by heading to your local library

A lot is happening at local libraries this summer, making for the perfect opportunity to delve into a good book. Get rewarded with cool prizes for reading books by joining Maranda’s Summer Reading Club. Learn more here

Stay cool in the summer heat while having a blast at these West Michigan splash pads and pools

Holland Aquatic Center

Holland Aquatic Center

The Holland Aquatic Center offers so much indoor water fun! Check out their Summer Splash pass here that makes swimming fun and affordable all summer long.  

Battle Creek

Van Buren County

Have a great time without spending a dime! Here are free ways to experience summer fun in West Michigan

Meijer Free Tuesdays at the Grand Rapids Art Museum-Meijer offers free admission on Tuesdays to the Grand Rapids Art Museum from noon to 6 p.m.  Learn more here.    
Battle Creek Recreation-The Battle Creek Recreation Department offers parks and trails, rec programs, activities and more. Learn more here.   
Grand Rapids Parks and Recreation– Grand Rapids Parks and Recreation offers over 75 parks, trails, aquatics and more. Check out their full directory here 
Holland Museum-The Holland Museum hosts free second Mondays every month. You can learn more here.   
Kalamazoo Valley Museum-The Kalamazoo Valley Museum has three floors of interactive exhibits focusing on the history of Kalamazoo, science and other fun topics. Discover more about the museum here
Kent County Recycling Center- The Kent County Recycling Center hosts free tours for all ages. See how our materials are recycled by learning more here.    
Kzoo Parks– Kzoo Parks has a list of Kalamazoo’s city parks and pools. They also host family fun events all summer long. Learn more here.   
Muskegon Museum of Art- The Muskegon Museum of Art hosts free Thursdays thanks to the Meijer Foundation. Learn more about this free general admission day here.   
Storytime GR and Summer Reading Celebrations- There will be a free storytime in Garfield Park, Martin Luther King Jr. Park, Roosevelt Park and Lincoln Park. Learn more about the storytimes and the event here.  
Storytimes Grand Rapids Public Library-Several branches of the Grand Rapids Public Library are hosting free storytimes all summer long.  Check out the schedule here.   
Storytimes in the Park– The Kalamazoo Public Library offers several free story times geared for children 0 to 5 years old. Learn more and find the entire schedule here.  
Berlin Raceway-Check out the Berlin Raceway this summer! Kids 15 and under are free. Learn more here.

Soak up the sunshine by exploring these outdoor activities and events in West Michigan

West Michigan Whitecaps

It’s summertime, and baseball is in full swing! There are plenty of opportunities to watch your West Michigan Whitecaps this summer here!   

First Tee West Michigan

the first tee west michigan

First Tee West Michigan teaches youth ages 7 to 17 how to golf. The have programs in Grand Rapids, Holland, Kalamazoo and Muskegon. Learn more here.   

Kalamazoo Growlers

The Kalamazoo Growlers are back for another fun season of baseball. Learn about tickets and the fun promotions they have at the games here.  

Summer activities on the Grand River

This summer, enjoy family paddle nights, guided kayaking and nine passenger canoes! Find more details here.   

Cheers to endless summer fun, West Michigan!