Friends Participate in Panel on Power of Parks for Health Roundtable

Friends Laurie Pope, Co-chair of the Accessibility Committee, and Jeanne Esch, Trach Chair Program Volunteer will be participating in a National Park Service Roundtable with the National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF) on Thursday, July 22 6:30-8:00 pm EDT.

The panel will discuss present and historical barriers to outdoor access and examine an accessibility project from Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula, to highlight strategies and opportunities to improve access to all types of parks and public lands for the Disability community.

Register for the event here:

Picture Perfect Sleeping Bear Book Release Party

The Book YOU helped Create is here! Picture-Perfect Sleeping Bear contains a delightful collection of photographs and stories submitted by locals and visitors to the Sleeping Bear Dunes Area.

Pre-order Picture-Perfect Sleeping Bear today and you can select the option to pick up your pre-paid copy at the book signing party at Cherry Republic, Glen Arbor, July 11th, 2-4 pm.

Look for the Friends of Sleeping Bear tent outside between the retail store and winery. Order books online for a speedy pick-up at the event. It’s a great opportunity to have many photo and story contributors sign your books! Books can also be purchased on the day of the event.

You’ll have a chance to chat with some of the writers and photographers whose stories and photos are published in the book. To find out more, go to

Pre-ordering is now available. Learn more on the Book Page!

Announcing Picture Perfect Sleeping Bear

Cover of Picture Perfect Sleeping Bear Book

Pre-sale available NOW, Picture-Perfect Sleeping Bear: An Album of Shared Memories Celebrating the National Lakeshore

Cover of Picture Perfect Sleeping Bear Book

Cover of the NEW Book, Picture Perfect Sleeping Bear, by the Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes. All Sales fundraised go to Sleeping Bear Dunes National Park projects.

With photos submitted by locals, visitors, and historians, it shares the land and activities from first settling families to the development of the national park, to today. Memories shared for all to enjoy.

Pre-ordering is now available with shipping in mid-July. Learn more on the book page!


Adopt-A-River clean-up events 2021

We’ve scheduled our first Adopt-a-River cleanups this year for the Crystal River and Lower Platte rivers in June.
We’ll start with a very brief welcome/orientation followed by the cleanup at the kayak launch site and then the river. We’ll have “grabbers” and volunteer vests for your use and kayaks will be provided.

Please bring a mask, which is required for transportation to the launch site/from the endpoint. It is also recommended that you have coverings for your feet, as you never know what’s under the water should you tip over.
A light lunch will be provided following the cleanup

If you would like to participate, send an email to 
Crystal River 
Date: Thursday, June 10th 
Time: 9:00 A.M.
Location: Meet at Crystal River Outfitters, 6249 River Rd in Glen Arbor.
Lower Platte 
Date: Thursday, July 15th 
Time: 9:00 A.M.
Location: Meet at the Park Launch Site at the corner of Lake Michigan Rd. and M-22. 
The event will end at Lake Township Park.
The Riverside Canoe Livery and National Park will help with transport needs.

Beach Stairs Repair

Friends Supported Park Project. 

Getting the Park ready for Summer!


Along the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, there are several access points to Lake Michigan. Three beach access stairs were installed in 2012 at Lane Road, 2013 at No-Name Road, 2014 at Sunset Shores Drive. All were damaged by high water levels and waves over the last 2 years. All of these stairs were closed off to visitors last year due to the damage.

Read More

Bike Repair Stations

Bike Repair Station at D.H.Day Campground

The Friends have received approval from the Park to install three bike repair stations on the Heritage Trail. The Park has already installed one at DH Day Campground and has proved to be a valuable tool for bikers who frequent the trail.
We plan to install the stations at 
the following locations:

  • Glen Haven – near the Garage
  • Dune Climb – near the bike racks and Donor Plaza
  • Voice Road / Bar Lake Road Trailhead – across the trail from the trailhead kiosk

These locations are very popular starting points for many trail users. Having repair stations where trail users are just getting their bikes ready to go on the trail will make it possible for them to make minor repairs or adjustments before they get on the trail.

Each station costs about $1,540. Please consider donating toward one today – or buy a whole station! Just indicate the donation is for Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail and add a comment saying “For bike repair stations.”

River Count Volunteers Needed

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is seeking volunteers to assist with conducting its bi-annual River Use Counts on the Crystal and Platte Rivers. River use counts are conducted every other year to document park visitors’ enjoyment of these unique natural resources. Information collected helps park officials to better understand recreational use of the rivers and how to best preserve the outstanding habitat they provide.

Volunteers will be asked to commit to a five to six hour shift, counting the number of visitors that pass by a given spot on each river. This is the perfect opportunity to relax in the great outdoors and enjoy a good book.
We are looking for volunteers who can assist with any one of the following days/shifts:


Crystal River

  • Saturday, August 1 (9:00 am to 2:00 pm) and (1:00 pm to 7:00 pm)
  • Tuesday, August 4 (9:00 am to 2:00 pm) and (1:00 pm to 7:00 pm)
  • Wednesday, August 5 (9:00 am to 2:00 pm) and (1:00 pm to 7:00 pm)

Platte River

  • Friday, July 31 (9:00 am to 2:00 pm) and (1:00 pm to 7:00 pm)
  • Saturday, August 1 (9:00 am to 2:00 pm) and (1:00 pm to 7:00 pm)
  • Wednesday, August 5 (9:00 am to 2:00 pm) and (1:00 pm to 7:00 pm)

If you would like to assist the park in this effort, or would like more information, please contact Renee Babiarz at or (231) 326-4762

Adopt-A-River Clean Up June 24

Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes Adopt-A-River Clean Up scheduled June 24th. 
We are back on the water, come join the fun! 
We will begin with a brief welcome and orientation followed by the river cleanup. You may bring your own kayak or  Riverside Canoe Livery  will provide you with one, please email the program coordinator listed below to RSVP.
Transportation to the “put in” location will be provided.
If you have a “Friends” vest and litter gitter, please bring them with you. If not, we will have some available for use.
Please bring a mask which will be required while being transported in the transportation vehicles. The “put in” location is at the Canoe/kayak access point at Lake Michigan Rd. and Hwy 22. 
Date: June 24th: 10 am 
Location: Meet at the Canoe/kayak access point at Lake Michigan Rd. and Hwy 22
Any needed equipment and transportation will be provided by Riverside Canoe/Kayak Livery.
Pizza will be provided for all volunteers at Sue’s Riverfront, which has outside seating.
Do not attend the cleanup if you have any symptoms of Coronavirus. 
You must fill out the daily self-assessment checklist BEFORE you come into the park to participate:
If you are not currently a member of the Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes, please fill out the Friends Volunteer Registration Form and Park volunteer service agreement available for you to sign prior to attending the river clean up.
Please email me ( to let us know if you will be attending the river cleanup and if you need a kayak. We need this information to plan transportation requirements.

Looking forward to seeing you on June 24th!!

Summer Volunteer Training

Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes Hosts Volunteer Training Sessions through Zoom.
Join the annual Friends volunteer training zoom session for registered Friends members. Presenters will include speakers from the Park Interpretive and Law Enforcement divisions as well as Chairpersons for different volunteer positions. Park staff will address questions about volunteering in the Park during COVID restrictions.
Adopt-A-Beach and Adopt-A-River Orientation: Thursday, June 4 at 2:00 pm.
Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail Ambassadors, Adopt-a-Trail, and Trail Crew Orientation, Thursday, June 4th at 4:00 pm.
Watch your email for a zoom invitation and instructions, coming soon!
Anyone who is not a current Friends member can apply by filling out the application form through the Friends website:
For more information, email Mary Peterson at 
We are still seeking a few special Friends with specific talents and good organizational skills who want to join our team: Membership Record Manager and Fund Development Director positions are currently open. 
For more information, visit our previous post:

Winter Snowshoe Hikes

The National Park will be holding weekly Ranger-led Snowshoe hikes in the park.

There will be two hikes each Saturday, one for beginners called the Snowshoe Saunter and one for more experienced snowshoe hikers called the Snowshoe Trek.

Reservations are required but snowshoes are not and will be loaned at no charge to participants. For more information and learn more about the events on the park’s website: and to make a reservation for a hike, Please call 231-326-4700, extension 5010.


Weekly Snowshoe Hikes

Date: Saturdays 

Time: 1:00 PM

Location: Philip A. Hart Visitor Center in Empire

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