Play Outside This Winter in Oakland County!

four cross country skiers

There’s so much fun to be had this winter in Oakland County. From skiing and snowboarding, to skating and more, the opportunities for outdoor recreation are endless!

Bundle up, grab your gear, and head out to an Oakland County Park, trail, hill, or lake to stay active and enjoy the winter season. Check out our full list of outdoor winter activities below, or scroll down to use our interactive map.

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2023 Fire & Ice Festival in Oakland County

The Fire & Ice Festival in Downtown Rochester is back January 20th and 21st for another year of family fun and winter festivities that you can enjoy for FREE. The community celebration will be packed with events like axe throwing, cornhole, climbing wall, ice sculptures along Main Street, fireworks on both nights, The Big, Bright Light Show, live music, TasteFest, and so much more!

“The Fire & Ice Festival is a fun-filled opportunity to get out of the house, even in the depths of winter, to enjoy some fresh air and regain a sense of community. The event attracts thousands of people from across the region to get a taste of how joyful and active winter can really be.”

-Oakland County Executive Dave Coulter

The Fire & Ice Festival runs from 5 – 9 p.m. on Friday, January 20th and 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. on Saturday, January 21st. The fireworks are at 8 p.m. both days.

Take a look at our video for a preview of the fun:

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2023 Martin Luther King Jr. Day Observations in and around Oakland County

Washington: Martin Luther King, Jr memorial monument on September 2, 2015 in Washington, DC.

As we reflect of the life of Dr. King, we cannot do so without considering his legacy of service to mankind. Observed as a national day of service, Martin Luther King Jr. Day encourages people to volunteer to improve their communities. Honor Martin Luther King, Jr. this upcoming MLK Day on Monday, January 16, by attending an event or participating in a day of service.

Learn more about the MLK Day of Service on their website, where you can also search for volunteer opportunities or register a project. The United Way and Volunteer Match have additional resources and opportunities to make it a “day on, not a day off.”

This year also marks the inaugural Oakland County Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service. Organized by the Oakland County Equity Council, various service projects were made available to Oakland County employees at several locations throughout the county.

“It is our hope that our staff throughout the county, in whatever ways they are able to do so, will assist us in demonstrating Oakland County’s commitment to the mission of Justice and Equality that Dr. King fought for so vehemently.”

​Oakland County Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer, Harry Weaver III

While Oakland County, Michigan Government offices are closed on Monday, January 16, Oakland County Parks and Recreation is offering a Free Park Entry Day in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. for the public to enjoy free daily park entry with access to natural areas, trails, dog parks, playgrounds, fishing spots and park amenities.

Browse the list of observations and commemorative events happening in and around Oakland County below:

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Flurries of Fun All Winter Long with Oakland County Parks and Recreation

family sledding

Oakland County Parks and Recreation (OCPR) provides opportunities for you to stay active and enjoy nature all year – so don’t let the cold weather keep you indoors this winter! From cross-country skiing to fat tire biking, and birdwatching to participating in a hands-on program at one of the nature centers, there is always a reason to get outside and enjoy the crisp air, beautiful scenery, and fresh snow.

For a list of winter recreation opportunities by park, click here.

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Oakland County Parks and Recreation Seeks Input on New 5-Year Parks and Recreation Master Plan

photo of wetlands at Independence Oaks North

We want your feedback! The new Oakland County Parks and Recreation (OCPR) 5-Year Parks and Recreation Master Plan is available online and OCPR is encouraging Oakland County residents to continue to share their feedback. Their plan will help build a more equitable, sustainable, and resilient future for OCPR by updating the strategic plan vision and mission by adding four core values to the 2023-2027 Recreation Plan.

The plan will guide OCPR staff and the Parks Commission in their efforts to provide high-quality recreational opportunities to Oakland County residents over the next five years. It follows the Guidelines for the Development of Community Park, Recreation, Open Space and Greenway Plans provided by the Grants Division of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and will replace the previous 5-year plan, which expires on December 31, 2022.

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