LASATA: Celebrate southwest Michigan’s great outdoors

June is National Great Outdoors Month, and southwest Michigan is a wonderful place to get out and explore.

As we officially kick off summer next week, and with students on summer break, now is a great time to shut off the electronics, put down the screens and go outside. It is estimated that our children nowadays spend 10 hours a day looking at screens and not enough time in nature.

We know that spending as little as 20 minutes in nature has a tremendous impact on our health, especially when coupled with physical activities. Southwest Michigan is blessed with abundant options for outdoor activities, including hiking and biking trails, miles of freshwater coastline, lakes and rivers to boat and fish, campgrounds, and more.

I recently had the opportunity to visit a few of these family friendly options.

In Cassopolis, I enjoyed attending the ribbon cutting ceremony at the newly opened Stone Lake beach and pier. This multiyear project helped transform an underutilized space into a wonderful gathering place for family fun in the community.

I also had the pleasure of touring the Harbor Country Cabins, in Sawyer. The accommodating cabins and quiet, private location offer guests a rustic retreat without having to travel hours to get there.

For more information on where to go and what to do during Great Outdoors Month and throughout summer, check out michigan.org and michigan.gov/dnr.   

It’s hard to beat summer in southwest Michigan, and there’s no better time to escape the indoors. We’ll see you out there! 

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