The calendar hasn’t officially declared summer yet, but after Memorial Day weekend, most of us Metro Detroiters are in summer mode. What better way to enjoy the sunshine and warmth in southeast Michigan than by staying active outdoors? There are plenty of outdoor sports to partake in that will get you moving while allowing you to enjoy the season. Let’s take a look!
Kensington Metropark, 2240 W. Buno Rd., Milford, features the Black Locust disc golf course, named after the trees found in the park. The course, located across from the Martindale Beach parking lot, consists of 27-holes and is open year-round from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Annual bag tags cost $50, while the senior/junior rate (over 62 years of age or 20 and under, respectively) costs $30. A daily wristband costs just $3. If you purchase an annual pass, you can also use it at Stony Creek Metropark, 4300 Main Park Dr., Shelby Charter Twp., which features one of the most difficult disc golf courses in the state, the Buckhorn.
Canoeing and kayaking
Argo Canoe Livery, 1055 Longshore Dr., Ann Arbor, offers canoes and one or two person kayaks, as well as rafts, tubes and stand up paddleboard rentals. The river has very little to no current, so if you’re a beginner, this is a great place to start.
Rent a three-person canoe for two hours for just $18, or a two-person kayak for the same price. If you’re on your own, rent a one-person kayak for two hours for $14, or a stand up paddleboard for $20. If you need some instruction before you get out on the water, take advantage of a class, like the upcoming Introduction to Stand-up Paddlebard (SUP) on Thursday, May 28 or a Teen Kayaking Class on Thursday, July 9.
Detroit River Sports, which is located along the Detroit River inside the Greyhaven Marina, is a company that provides tours along the Detroit River via canoe or kayak. Tours are offered weekly and include a Sunset Canal Tour, which is offered on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and the Belle Isle Day Tour, which takes place on Saturdays.
Both of the aforementioned tours cost $40 and include kayak rental, paddle, lifejacket and a knowledgeable guide to lead the way.
Stand up paddleboarding (SUP)
Detroit City SUP has locations in the Island Lake and Proud Lake State Recreation Areas, where you’ll get to experience both fitness and fun through stand up paddleboarding.
Rental rates include $25 for one hour of on-site boarding, or $35 for two hours. If you and your friends want to learn how to paddleboard, or just practice the craft you already know, private group rates are available for five paddlers ($200) up to 10 paddlers ($475). PaddleFit SUP with yoga coaching is also available, and costs $35 for a single class.
Stay tuned to Detroit City SUP’s Facebook page for the latest news and events.
Liberty Park of America, 33600 Mound Rd., Sterling Heights, is a sports complex that hosts a variety of leagues. This summer, join a coed sand volleyball league! Game times rotate between 6:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m., 8:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday or Thursday nights, and any makeup games are played on Sunday afternoons.
A $100 deposit is required for your team’s registration, and there are no referees during the game, so make sure you have at least one team member who knows the rules! The spring league is already under way, so you can get your team together in time for the summer session, which begins in July. Fill out the application form here.
Canton Sports Center, 46555 Michigan Ave., Canton, offers men’s, women’s and coed softball teams. Registration for 2015’s second session is going on now, and a $100 deposit will hold your team’s spot. Depending on which team you sign up for, second session games begin at the end of June and run into the first week of September.
The standard charge for a full season (with 14 games plus playoffs) is $625. If you’d like to play later in the season, registration for the third session begins on Monday, June 22.
No matter which outdoor sport you prefer, all that matters is that you get outside and get active. Don’t forget to slather on some sunscreen before you do so, and most importantly, have fun!