Michigan DNR encourages residents to get outside by offering free state park access on Black Friday

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In an effort to encourage people to tap into Michigan's great outdoors, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources has joined the #OptOutside movement by waiving the recreation passport entry fee to state parks on Black Friday, Nov. 24.

Enjoy a state park for free Friday.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is waiving the fee needed to access state parks, as well as some trails and boating access sites, on Black Friday.

Related: DNR implements new reservation policy for Michigan state park campsites

The DNR hopes that the free access will allow Michiganders to take a moment to relax and experience what the state has to offer this holiday season.

"In Michigan, you’re never more than a half-hour away from a state park, recreation area, state forest campground or state trail," said Ron Olson, DNR Parks and Recreation Division chief. "#OptOutside is an invitation to residents and those traveling to spend time outside during the holiday weekend and help continue or build new Thanksgiving traditions."

While access is free, camping and other permit license fees apply.

To search for state parks, state forest campgrounds, state-designated trails and more, click here.

The DNR also offered a list of activities to enjoy the outdoors:

  • Find a new mile to hike or run on one of more than 12,500 miles of state-designated trails.
  • Cast a line in a state park and put fishing on your Friday festivities menu.
  • Try mountain biking.
  • Jump on the Iron Belle Trail -- the longest designated state trail in the nation -- and crisscross more than half of Michigan’s counties along both hiking and biking routes.
  • Find a new hunting spot by exploring one of Michigan's vast recreation areas.
  • Enjoy the peace and quiet of camping in the off-season.
  • Download a geocaching app and take part in an outdoor treasure hunting game that utilizes GPS-enabled devices.
  • Seek out historical markers and learn a little bit more about Michigan’s backstory.
  • Make a bird-watching scavenger hunt for kids and start a list of the birds you spot.

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