Fireworks-Free Fourth of July Festivities

Every year more than 285 million pounds of fireworks are bought on the Fourth of July.

While fireworks have become a Fourth of July tradition, for some, they may not make for the ideal night.

Certain health conditions can be aggravated by fireworks’ sounds, sights or smoke. The sound of fireworks for some may trigger mental health conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The bright flashes may cause seizures for those with epilepsy. For people with respiratory problems, the smoke may bother their lungs. Even our furry friends may be scared of the loud boom caused by fireworks.

Fortunately, the state of Michigan has 11 state parks that will be fireworks-free for the Fourth of July. Before you plan your Fourth of July parties, make sure you’re considering the needs of everyone involved. For those who prefer quieter celebrations, check out these state parks:

  • Bewabic State Park– Enjoy the hiking trails, playgrounds and beach at this park in Crystal Falls.
  • Lake Hudson Recreation Area– Relax for a while as you lay lakeside for the day on Hudson Lake. After the sun goes down, marvel at the night sky in this dark sky preserve.
  • Rifle River Recreation Area– Take in all of Michigan’s natural beauty in this wilderness haven located in the AuSable State Forest.
  • Hayes State Park– This state park offers opportunities to unwind and to explore. Not only can you rest by the water, but you can also challenge yourself with geocaching and hiking.
  • Cheboygan State Park– Take a hike to find some of the rarest wildflowers and unwind after at your campsite or in the on-site lodge. Don’t forget to visit the remains of the Cheboygan Point Light house and learn about its history.
  • Wells State Park– Enjoy the waters by swimming or fishing and take a break for a picnic lunch or dinner.
  • Leelanau State Park– Rest in the campground or go for a hike, either way you will not be disappointed. If you want to check out some of the educational opportunities, visit the Grand Traverse Lighthouse Museum to learn about their history.
  • Sleepy Hollow State Park– Take in the serenity of the river as you relax in Sleepy Hollow. You can also ride horseback through the designated trails.
  • Brighton Recreation Area-Bishop Lake Campground– Get a workout in while enjoying Michigan’s waters as you canoe, kayak, stand-up paddleboard or rowboat your way around one of the lakes in this park.
  • Craig Lake State Park– Disconnect from your worries at the most remote state park. Stay for the night on the campgrounds and you may even see a deer or two in the morning.

What’s your favorite Fourth of July tradition?

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Photo credit: Lisegagne

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