Since 2001, the Huron County Nature Center’s annual ‘Lady Slipper Festival’ has been held on Memorial Day weekend. This one-day event is the center’s official spring opener, the start of our slate of summer programs, and, most importantly, timed to coincide with the bloom of the Pink Lady’s Slipper orchid in the park. While not threatened in Michigan, this orchid and mascot of the festival are protected and treasured in the nature center, where it finds the suitable soils and fungi that it needs to grow. Though there are many signs of spring in Michigan, this particular flower’s reemergence each year is welcomed and celebrated at the nature center.
Lady Slipper Festival on Memorial Day Weekend
This year’s festival on Sunday, May 29, is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event will be filled with music, food, arts and crafts, and an activity or two for the kids. The amphitheater will have live music by Greg Baunoch in the morning and Kenny Lang during the afternoon. In addition, the “Farm 2 You” food truck will be at the festival. Local artists, craftspeople, and other vendors will have a variety of items for sale. Returning as a traditional activity for young visitors will be making a tree cookie necklace to take home as a souvenir.
New Exhibits at HCNC
The Visitor’s Center, located at 3336 Loosemore Road, east of Oak Beach Road, will be open. This year the Nature Center showcases two new exhibits inside the visitor’s center. The new apex predator exhibit will highlight the coyote and bobcat. A new multimedia display about frogs and toads of Michigan includes a beautiful short film about tadpoles plus interactive elements for children.
Outside the Visitor’s Center, visitors can see the ‘Air-Bee-and-Bee’ display: a bee ‘hotel’ welcoming native solitary bees with nesting sites and interpretive signage. Finally, don’t forget to walk the trails and look for the flower that adorns the Nature Center’s logo, the Pink Lady’s Slipper orchid.
About the Huron County Nature Center
The Huron County Nature Center is an all-volunteer-run 501c3 nonprofit with a mission to protect our 280 acres of lovely Michigan forest while making it available for the public’s enjoyment. Cover now for over 80 years, the land is a rare forested dune and wet swale complex, hosting large vernal pools, migratory birds, and a wide array of wildlife and plants. Two trail systems with a combined length of almost six miles allow visitors to experience the wilderness all year long, in every season.
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