Snow is Falling – Let’s Hit the Slopes!

Snow is falling in Oakland County and that means it’s a great time to have some winter fun at our area ski resorts. With all three being just a short drive away, you can choose from Alpine Valley in White Lake Township, Mt. Holly in Groveland Township, and Pine Knob in Clarkston. The resorts offer student, child & senior discounts, school ski-clubs, rentals, lessons, and terrain parks. If you’re just starting out on the slopes, have no fear! All three offer beginner hills with tow ropes and magic/wonder carpets to make things easy for you.

Check out our video and see all of the winter fun there is to be had on the slopes in Oakland County!

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Beavers, Muskrats, Lodges, Dams, Caches and Push-ups!

WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

The shortest day of the year draws near. First ice is already forming in the shallows of marshes and wetlands. Those signals of nature’s way indicate that the clock of winter preparedness is rapidly ticking away for two semi-aquatic mammals that live in our midst, and are often confused: the beaver (Castor canadensis) and the muskrat (Ondatra zibenthicus). Both species are dependent on aquatic environments. Both species build lodges in the water. Both species can stay underwater for about fifteen minutes. Both have the ability to created dens in river banks and lakeshores by using the claws on their front paws. However, the muskrat loses out totally when it comes to felling trees. The beaver, and the beaver alone, is the master logger. Continue reading

Find Your Christmas Tree on an Oakland County Tree Farm

Family with Christmas tree in forest

Residents celebrating Christmas can turn their annual tree trip into a family adventure inside the idyllic rural landscape of northern Oakland County. As the year comes to a close and Fall makes its final, blustery turn to Winter, there may be no better place to experience the seasonal change than among the fresh pines of a Christmas Tree Farm.

Oakland County’s award-winning GIS team has developed an interactive map to help residents find the perfect tree farm for a seasonal outing.

Tree Farm Map

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Meadow Brook Hall Holiday Tours

Are you looking for an Oakland County event that will fill you with holiday cheer right in time for the merry season? Meadow Brook’s Annual Holiday Walk is going on now and runs through December 23rd, 2017. Get excited to walk through this exquisite, early-20th century mansion decorated with twinkling holiday lights, trees, ornaments, and more, making it a true holiday wonderland.

This 110-room Tudor-revival style mansion was constructed between 1926 and 1929 and was once the home of Matilda Dodge Wilson, widow of auto pioneer John Dodge and co-founder of Dodge Brothers Motor Car Company, and her second husband, Alfred Wilson. Matilda loved spending her time filling Meadow Brook Hall with lavish furniture, paintings, and art from several centuries and around the world. These collections are still present in the home today and reflect the lavish lifestyles of the era of the American Industrialists of the early 20th century. Fun fact: The Tommy Dorsey Band and singer Frank Sinatra performed in the house at Matilda’s 25th birthday party.  In 1957, the Wilson’s donated their entire estate and an additional $2 million to found what would become Oakland University. Guests can now take a step back into history as they tour this National Historic Landmark.

Today, Meadow Brook Hall hosts parties, events, and special events such as the Holiday Walking Tours, and new this year, Holiday Lights & Winter Nights. On December 11 & December 18th – 23rd, from 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m., guests can stroll down the lit path to the Land of Santa and Sweets to warm up by a fire and enjoy a cup of hot cocoa. To make this festive season extra special, it is also offering a Kids Candy Adventure, a mailbox to the North Pole, and special guided candlelight tours open throughout the duration of the holiday season.

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Snowy Owls: Visitors from the Arctic Wilderness

WILDER SIDE OF OAKLAND COUNTY

Snowy Owls are charismatic, majestic and mysterious. They are the heaviest of all North American owls with some weighing almost six pounds. Their yellow eyes, massive talons, feathered feet, eye-catching white plumage and diurnal hunting behavior appeal to almost everyone, even people who normally would rather shop in a crowded mall than walk in the silence of a woodland. Naturalists and birders are smitten by their unpredictable movement patterns, and the spirit of the remote arctic wilderness these amazing raptors represent. However, unless you plan on visiting the high Arctic tundra of North America or Eurasia, the chances of seeing Snowy Owls in the wild is usually nearly zero. But maybe not this December.

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