Northern Michigan Museums Offer Outdoor Family Fun

Northern Michigan Museums Offer Outdoor Family Fun
Northern Michigan Museums Offer Outdoor Family Fun
Michigan DNR
Michigan Department of Natural Resources

MIchigan -( Two history museums in northern Michigan once again have opened their doors to the visiting public.

The Hartwick Pines Logging Museum in Grayling and the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Museum in Roscommon began sharing their unique stories in May.

The Hartwick Pines Logging Museum is situated among the towering trees of one of Michigan’s largest stands of old-growth white pine. The museum’s exhibits return visitors to the state’s 19th-century logging era, when Michigan led the nation in sawed lumber production. The visitor center, logging camp, exhibits and period rooms tell the stories of the lumberjacks, or “shanty boys,” river men and logging companies that powered Michigan’s historic white pine industry. The Logging Museum is located in Hartwick Pines State Park, 8 miles northeast of Grayling, Michigan, on M-93.

Park attractions include the Hartwick Pines Visitor Center and exhibits, log structures with logging exhibits, 9,600 acres of forest and hiking trails, special events and family programs. The park overall offers a welcoming and engaging opportunity for children of all ages to explore and discover the natural wonders of one of Michigan’s most diverse forest environments.

The CCC Museum tells the remarkable story of the more than 100,000 young Michigan men who were enrolled, between 1933 and 1942, to perform conservation and reforestation projects. Their work included fighting forest fires; building truck trails, bridges and buildings; revitalizing the state park system; helping to establish national parks; and improving campgrounds in Michigan’s national forests. The legacy of the CCC workers remains very much a part of Michigan’s forests and outdoor recreation activities today.      

Daily offerings include the historic Higgins Lake Tree Nursery and indoor and outdoor exhibits, as well as swimming, camping, picnicking and hiking at North Higgins Lake State Park. The CCC Museum is located in North Higgins Lake State Park along North Higgins Lake Drive, south of Grayling, between U.S. 127 and I-75.

The Hartwick Pines Logging Museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. through Labor Day; 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. after Labor Day until Oct. 25. The CCC Museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through Labor Day, and Saturdays and Sundays only through the rest of September. For more information on special museum programs and events, please go or

The Hartwick Pines Logging Museum and CCC Museum are two of 11 nationally accredited museums administered by the Michigan Historical Center, an agency within the Department of Natural Resources.  Admission to each museum is free, but a Recreation Passport is required for park entry. 

A Recreation Passport grants vehicle access to any Michigan state park, boat launch, state forest campground or nonmotorized state trailhead parking. Residents can purchase the Passport for just $11 ($5 for motorcycles) at the time of Michigan license plate renewal through Secretary of State. Forgot to check “YES” during renewal? Residents and nonresidents can purchase a Recreation Passport window sticker during regular business hours at state parks. Learn more about how the Recreation Passport supports state parks, local outdoor recreation opportunities and historic and cultural sites at

The Michigan Historical Center is part of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Its museum and archival programs help people discover, enjoy and find inspiration in their heritage. It includes the Michigan Historical Museum, 10 regional museums, Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary and Underwater Preserve, and the Archives of Michigan. Learn more

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state’s natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to