Blanket Food: Picnic Spots in Metro Detroit

By: Michael Fossbakk | June 26, 2020

As businesses continue to resume operations in a safe manner following the COVID-19 shutdown and as the weather continues to trend towards the “shorts and t-shirt” variety, many people are looking for ways to enjoy that weather while remaining socially conscious.

One great idea is picnicking! It gets families out of the house, into the sun, and maybe even a little exercise. After stocking up on some healthy choices for food from local businesses and farms, here are a few great parks you can go picnicking while minding guidelines for reopening Michigan.

Belle Isle

While attractions, such as the Conservatory and Aquarium, remain closed per Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ recommendations, the outdoor areas of Belle Isle are open to the public. It is encouraged to practice social distancing and wear a mask when possible as you share the park with others. Find a good spot to set up, whether that’s a picnic table or just an open field and a blanket, and enjoy the breeze rolling in from the Detroit River on a sunny day.

Heritage Park

This Farmington Hills park has a large picnic area with sheltered spots available on a first-come, first-serve basis (visitors may also reserve a sheltered area for a fee ahead of time). In addition to covered picnic areas, after lunch, you can take advantage of 4.5 miles of gorgeous hiking trails. It is recommended that you stay six feet apart from other groups on trails, however. 

Rolling Hills County Park

Located in Ypsilanti, Rolling Hills County Park is a 439-acre park filled with beautiful scenery and nature, perfect for a picnic in the shade. If the kids are looking for something to do, playgrounds are open as of June 12, but they are not clean or sanitized. Therefore, it’s important to sanitize before and after using the facilities at the park.

Addison Oaks

Further north, you will find Addison Oaks, a 1,140-acre nature park with many habitats for animals and wildlife. Many people go here to camp, however, they have postponed their camping season until June 25. If you just want a scenic spot to have a homemade lunch under the trees, Addison Oaks is perfect. You might want to bring your camera, though! Wildlife, such as birds, turtles, and fish can be spotted on a regular basis.