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Welcome to Great Lakes Michigan

Michigan, upper midwestern state of the United States. It consists of two peninsulas thrusting into the Great Lakes and has borders with Ohio and Indiana (S), Wisconsin (W), and the Canadian province of Ontario (N,E).


Area,  58,216 sq mi (150,779 sq km). 
Capital,  Lansing.
Largest city,  Detroit. 
Motto,  Si Quaeris Peninsulam Amoenam Circumspice [If You Seek a Pleasant Peninsula, Look about You].
State bird,  Robin.
State flower,  Apple Blossom.
State tree,  White Pine.


The northern Michigan wilds, numerous inland lakes, and some 3,000 mi (4,800 km) of shoreline, combined with a pleasantly cool summer climate, have long attracted vacationers. In the winter Michigan's snow-covered hills bring skiers from all over the Midwest. Places of interest in the state include Greenfield Village, a re-creation of a 19th-century American village, and the Henry Ford Museum, both at Dearborn ; Pictured Rocks and Sleeping Bear Dunes national lakeshores; and Isle Royal National Park. 
Lansing is the capital, and Detroit is the largest city. Other major cities are Grand Rapids, Warren, Flint and Ann Arbor.

Manufacturing accounts for 30% of Michigan's economic production, more than twice as much as any other sector. The manufacture of automobiles and transportation equipment is by far the state's chief industry, and Detroit, Dearborn, Flint, Pontiac, and Lansing are historic centers of automobile production, although the industry is now in dramatic decline throughout the state. The automobile industry's mass-production methods, developed here, were the core of the early-20th-century industrial revolution. The chemical industry in Midland is one of the nation's largest; Kalamazoo is an important paper-manufacturing and pharmaceuticals center; Grand Rapids is noted for its furniture, and Battle Creek for its breakfast foods. 

Although mining contributes less to income in the state than either agriculture or manufacturing, Michigan still has important nonfuel mineral production, chiefly of iron ore, cement, sand, and gravel, and is a leading producer of peat, bromine, calcium-magnesium chloride, gypsum, and magnesium


*Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition, Copyright (c) 2003.

Coming Events

Wayne County Parks is celebrating its 90th birthday in 2009!

To help us celebrate, email any photos of your family taking part in any of the activities below and your photo may be posted on the Wayne County Parks website. Email your photos to: khealy@co.wayne.mi.us

90 fun things to do in Wayne County Parks

  1. Play disc golf at one of our two disc golf courses (Cass Benton and Lola Valley).
  2. Try to catch a flying marshmallow during the Marshmallow Drop on April 10.
  3. Enjoy the sweetness of Maple Sugaring at Cass Benton with a Parks naturalist (March).
  4. Go canoeing at Crosswinds Marsh.
  5. Help clean up the park during Teens to Clean on April 18.
  6. Take a car-free bike ride on Hines Drive during Saturday in the Park.
  7. Visit Snappy Sue (everyone’s favorite turtle) at the Nankin Mills Interpretive Center.
  8. Build your own kite during Kite Fest on May 2.
  9. Hike through the Holliday Nature Preserve.
  10. Listen to the “chorus” of frogs this spring at Crosswinds Marsh.
  11. Go fishing at Newburgh Point.
  12. Host a work outing at one of our picnic shelters and ball diamonds!
  13. Golf nine or eighteen holes at Inkster Valley or Warren Valley Golf Courses.
  14. Sign up for Summer Nature/History Day Camp at the Nankin Mills Interpretive Center.
  15. Catch a fish at the Fishing Derby on May 16.
  16. Test your fishing skills at Crosswinds Marsh, where you are almost guaranteed to catch something!
  17. Get your future Olympians ready at the Nursery School Olympics (June 3 and 4).
  18. Celebrate man’s best friend by bringing your favorite pooch to the Dog Park.
  19. Experience a festival dedicated to nature at Crosswind’s Nature Fest on June 20.
  20. Enjoy the new butterfly garden in front of the Nankin Mills Interpretive Center.
  21. Participate at a family nature program and have fun learning with your kids!
  22. Beat the heat by swimming at the Family Aquatic Center at Chandler Park.
  23. Bring your favorite senior to the Senior Fun Fest at Warrendale on June 27.
  24. Have a birthday party at Nankin Mills Interpretive Center.
  25. Make a fish-print t-shirt at Family Fun Fishing Day at Crosswinds Marsh.
  26. Take a pony ride at Elizabeth Park.
  27. Enter a fishing tournament at the Elizabeth Park Marina.
  28. Discover nature during the Nature Explorers classes at Crosswinds Marsh (July).
  29. Slide down one of the 14 play structures in Wayne County Parks.
  30. Walk the loop at Elizabeth Park (it is approximately one mile around).
  31. Get a little (or a lot) dirty at Mud Day on July 7.
  32. Experience a movie under the stars during a Movie in the Park this summer.
  33. Bring your horse for a scenic ride at Crosswinds Marsh.
  34. Teens get their turn in the mud for Mud Madness Volleyball on July 7.
  35. Gather family and friends for a beach volleyball game on one of our six courts.
  36. Polka, Polka, Polka at the Polka Fest on July 11.
    Turn into your favorite Super Hero at Super Hero Saturday on July 25.
  37. Stroll along the Rouge looking for trillium and other wildflowers.
  38. Walk through different parts of the Wayne County Park System with the Walk Michigan program.
  39. Turn into your favorite Super Hero at Super Hero Saturday on July 25.
  40. Visit a grow zone (and learn what one is!).
  41. Take a scout badge workshop at Crosswinds Marsh and Nankin Mills.
  42. Snap some photos so you can enter the 3rd Annual Parks Photography Contest.
  43. Play a company softball game at one of the many fields throughout the park system.
  44. Watch as the Roar on the River Races takes place at Elizabeth Park.
  45. Have a picnic with your family in one of the 7,500 acres of public recreation land of Wayne County Parks.
  46. Enjoy some smooth jazz at Jazz on the River on August 1-2.
  47. Launch your boat from the Elizabeth Park Marina.
  48. Go metal detecting to look for treasures!
  49. Test your skateboarding skills at the Elizabeth Park Skate Park.
  50. Bike Hines Drive from start to finish (it is approximately 17 miles long).
  51. Bring your class on a field trip to Crosswinds Marsh and Nankin Mills.
  52. Kayak on Newburgh Lake (bring your own!)
  53. Take a bird hike at Crosswinds Marsh where over 200 different species can be found.
  54. Shoot some hoops on the Warrendale Park basketball courts.
  55. Celebrate a day just for you - KIDS DAY - on August 15.
  56. Hold your special occasion at the banquet room at Warren Valley Golf Course.
  57. Take swim lessons at the Family Aquatic Center at Chandler Park.
  58. Watch a live drumming circle at Native American Heritage Day on September 12 at Nankin Mills.
  59. Take wedding pictures on one of the historic bridges at Elizabeth Park.
  60. Check out the third floor of the Nankin Mills Interpretive Center to learn how the Rouge River played a role in the lives of the first people of Michigan.
  61. Ride the Diamond Belle riverboat at Elizabeth Park during Somewhere in Time on September 20.
  62. Enjoy an ice cream at the Elizabeth Park Concession stand.
  63. Learn about pioneer life during Pioneer Day at Nankin Mills on September 26.
  64. Volunteer at a Wayne County Parks special event.
  65. Attend the 90th Birthday celebration of Wayne County Parks at Elizabeth Park on October 10!
  66. Watch a cross-country meet at Cass Benton Park.
  67. Look for the bald eagle at Crosswinds Marsh.
  68. Play carnival style games during the Halloween Festival on October 17.
  69. Enjoy the fall colors of Hines Drive in October.
  70. Try geocaching! Go on a high-tech scavenger hunt to search for hidden caches.
  71. Travel down a “not so scary” trail on the Halloween Forest Fun Hike in October at Nankin Mills.
  72. Pick up your 2010 picnic permit on PERMIT Day (November 2).
  73. Marvel at the beauty and serenity of nature in your Wayne County Parks.
  74. Brave the cold and try ice fishing on Newburgh or Wilcox Lakes.
  75. Throw a ringer at one of our horseshoe pits.
  76. Get fit on our fitness trails on Hines Drive and at Elizabeth Park.
  77. Hike and visit the arboretum tree collections at Bennett Arboretum.
  78. Run or walk through the Lightfest Fun Run/Walk on November 17.
  79. Learn about the history of Henry Ford on the second floor of the Nankin Mills Interpretive Center.
  80. Bike Through the Lights on November 18.
  81. Cross country ski at Bennett Arboretum or Crosswinds Marsh.
  82. Set up a guided tour of Nankin Mills to learn about the rich history of this area.
  83. Be dazzled by the fireworks at the Lightfest Grand Opening on November 19.
  84. Ice skate at Elizabeth Park.
  85. Sled down one of the many sledding hills in Hines Drive, like Middlebelt Hill.
  86. Drive through the largest lightshow in the Midwest from November 19-January 1, 2010.
  87. Attend a home school program at Nankin Mills.
  88. Sing some holiday favorites at the Family Holiday Fest & Tree Lighting on December 12 at Nankin Mills.
  89. Visit Santa Claus at the end of the Lightfest tour and during the Family Holiday Fest and Tree Lighting.
  90. Look for the ever-elusive beaver - or maybe spot a few beaver-cut trees at Crosswinds Marsh.

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