Holiday Double Book Bundle

This Holiday Season, gift the Picture-Perfect Sleeping Bear with a special gift!

The Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes is offering two exciting Picture-Perfect Sleeping Bear Book Bundles for your holiday gift giving.

Picture-Perfect Sleeping Bear, 128 full-color pages highlighting the history, people, and favorite haunts of the Sleeping Bear Dunes area. Also included: Ghost Towns, a 24 page booklet with a tour of the ghost towns of the Lakeshore and Pierce Stocking Drive, a tour of America’s most beautiful scenic drive, including photos, and information about the diverse ecosystems of the dune area. This bungle is available for $29.95. 

Picture-Perfect Sleeping Bear . Also included: 2024 Bird Calendar created by James Eye View Photography ($25 value), and 22-page full-color Friends Birding Guide featuring local birds with the seasons and locations to find them in the park area. This bundle is available for $39.95 

These bundles are available for a limited time on the Life of the Sleeping Bear website

Your purchase helps fund the Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes’ mission of protecting resources and heightening visitor experiences in partnership with Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. 

Save the Date

Meet us at the Empire Artisan Marketplace
When: Saturday, November 25th, 10 am to 4 pm
Where: Empire Township Hall, 10088 W Front Street, Empire.

Meet us at the Glen Arbor Holiday Marketplace (Tree lighting/caroling Friday at 6:15) 
When: Friday, November 24th, 6:30 to 8 pm and Saturday, November 25th, 10 am to 4 pm.
Where: Glen Arbor Township Hall, 6394 W Western Avenue, Glen Arbor.

Friends Info Table
When: December 3 rd , 1-4 pm
Where: Cherry Republic Public House in Glen Arbor, 5109, S Lake St, Glen Arbor, MI 49636

Upcoming Events: May-June 2023

Upcoming Events with the Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes and Park

5/5: Antique Apple and Pear Tree Pruning Workshop
Arrive at the Kelderhouse farm by 10am. Participants will assist in planting the orchard alongside Sleeping Bears Dunes National Lakeshore partners, Leelanau Conservation District, and the County Extension Master Gardener Program. During this morning activity, a grafting demonstration will also occur in
the orchard, along with planting new trees from the park’s apple nursery. We will be demonstrating how to add new stock back into your old orchard.
From 1-4pm, the workshop will address how to identify and properly remove dead materials from abandoned trees, proper pruning of the canopy for optimum maintenance and fruit production, maintain tree health, maintain ground cover under the tree, watering and care of the tree, and equipment safety. Participants can help transplant whips out of the nursery into the orchard, pruning trees and watch a grafting demo. 

5/6: Track Chair Training
We will be training on
Saturday, May 6th, for the upcoming Track Chair season; this training is open to new and current volunteers.  We will be doing the Bayview at 10am (meet at the lower trailhead off of Port Oneida Rd. near the Kelderhouse) and the Platte Campground at 2:30pm, both lasting 2.5 hours. You can attend one or both sessions depending on which trail you want to help with. This is a great way to learn about our program and how the Track Chairs operate. If you have any questions, please email us at 


5/9: Glen Haven Volunteer Training (VIRTUAL)
Are you interested in volunteering at Glen Haven? This training is for you. Over two trainings, the park will focus on Interpretation, and the other on volunteer safety, specifically in Glen Haven. Training is two nights, the first on May 9th. Both events will be virtual.
For  more information, contact Casey for more info at


5/13: Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes Spring Training
 The Annual Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes training is scheduled for May 13th at the Empire Town Hall. The training begins with a general orientation at 1pm, which applies to all experienced and new volunteers. This training is a once-a-year chance for volunteers to hear the latest park news from park staff. It will include updates from the park superintendent, park rangers, and the Park volunteer coordinator. The 1 pm general training will be followed by 2pm breakout sessions to provide more information about individual volunteer opportunities, including Adopt-A-Beach and Adopt-A-Trail. 

5/31: Bark Ranger Informational Kick-off
The kick-off event is for new volunteers of the Bark Ranger Program. Help the National Park and The Great Lakes Piping Plover Conservation Team protect piping plovers. We are recruiting dog owners to join our BARK Rangers program. Volunteering focuses on encouraging pet owners to recreate responsibly in the park with a lead-by-example approach.
This event will take place at Empire Township Hall at 6:30pm.
For more information, contact Tess Kohler at 

6/3: National Trails Day
Please join us for National Trails Day and celebrate our beautiful rustic trails within Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. If you are new to the Friends or a current volunteer, we would like to get every trail in the Park reported on and need your help. Come to the Dune Climb parking lot between 9am-3pm to visit our tent and register. We are offering a free copy of our brand new, full-color, 40-page Hiking Trail Map Booklet to registered participants, along with some fun swag to give away from the American Hiking Society as an official registered event. This is a fantastic opportunity to include family members and friends and get out to enjoy the wildflower season too.  We hope to see you there!
If you have any questions, please contact Tracy Barrilleaux at 

6/4: Trivia at Joe’s Friendly Tavern
Join us in Glen Arbor at 11015 W Front Street, Empire on June 4th. The event will start at 4pm meet and greet with the Friends and Trivia at 5 pm hosted by “Hoot,” the local trivia master.
All questions are based on information found in Picture-Perfect Sleeping Bear. Join for a chance to win some cool Friends swag.

6/10: Bark Ranger Training

Bark Ranger Volunteers meet at the Glen Lake Picnic Area June 10th at 10:30am. This Bark Ranger training event for new volunteers. Help the National Park and The Great Lakes Piping Plover Conservation Team protect piping plovers. The BARK Rangers program, focused on encouraging pet owners to recreate responsibly in the park with a lead-by-example approach.
Training on June 10 will now be held at the Empire Township Hall.
For more information, contact Tess Kohler at 

6/12-16: Barn Workshop
These Barn Workshops will be held at the Miller Barn from 9am-3pm daily
. This even is open to anyone, no skills required. (More information to come.)

6/28: Coffee with the Superintendent
This year’s Coffee with the Superintendent event will be held at Olsen Farm in Port Oneida at 1pm, followed by a farm tour. (More information to come.) 

National Public Lands Day 2023

Thank You to Volunteers & NPS Staff for dedicating National Public Lands to one of the Park’s most popular trails, the Empire Bluff Trail.

“We had a good turnout on what began as a rainy day… It did stop raining, and the cool temperatures made it perfect for the work we were doing.” stated Trail Crew Manager – Kerry Kelly. 
Seven volunteers worked with 3 NPS staff members to make improvements on the Empire Bluff trail. This trail is one of the most popular trails in the National Lakeshore and it gets a lot of use during all seasons.
Because of a few steep sections, the park is continually repairing the trail due to erosion and during winter, those steep sections can be treacherous when foot traffic and weather create icy conditions. The new reroute effort and repairs on the rest of the trail will significantly improve both erosion resistance and safety.

The work project was part of the celebration of National Public Lands Day

Garage Fundraiser

We are in need of a new place to store our equipment! Due to the renovation of the Sleeping Bear Inn, we need to move from the garages there.

A new, 1600-square-foot storage facility is planned at the Dune Climb to store:

  • Heritage Trail maintenance tools and equipment
  • The Park’s Mobile Visitor Center van
  • The Friends’ track chairs and trailer
  • The Friends’ publications and supplies.

This will provide a central location for the track chairs and trailer in this garage as well as trail maintenance equipment like our gaters that help us take care of the SBHT year-round.

The Garage will be temperature-controlled and provide storage for our books, maps, and stickers with easy access, and we will provide the Park with storage for their Mobile Visitor Center van and other interpretive equipment for visitor programs.

Help us make this project happen by making a generous donation this fall. Our target is to raise $30,000 to complete the capital needs for this storage building. Select ‘Dune Center Garage’ when you donate at

For a more detailed update on the plan for the Dune Center Storage Facility ‘The Garage’, review the planning sketch

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.”

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