Attendees enjoyed a variety of thrilling Midway rides like the Orbiter and the Zipper while there was also a more relaxing Ferris wheel for everyone to enjoy. Food options were numerous with options varying from a Farmer’s Market to Elephant Ear stands. Musical acts delighted audiences throughout every day of the event.
“Wherever I go, I see little bits of nature, little bits of animal behavior. And nobody else is watching…” Those are the words of iconic conservationist Jane Goodall in her 2018 interview titled, “Living with Chimps” that appears in the BBC publication, Science Focus. I had just finished reading the text of her interview last Friday about her controversial career and how her observations transformed the way we see our primate cousins. It was then time to head off to Springfield Oaks County Park for the grand opening of the 2018 Oakland County Fair. Jane Goodall was not on my mind nor was wildlife observation, but sometimes things change quickly.
Springfield Oaks County Park is not where folks generally go to embrace the wilds of nature or seek solitude. Springfield Oaks bustles with popular crowd oriented activities. The Oakland County Parks website makes no mention of passive nature exploration at their 333-acre multi-use park, but quite correctly boasts of the crowd-attracting venues:
“Springfield Oaks is home of the historic Ellis Barn and annual Oakland County Fair, which draws 100,000+ visitors annually to the 10-day event. The 1884 Ellis Barn is 14,000-square-feet and features an indoor riding arena, 11 box stalls, mechanical exercise ring and cavernous second floor for hay and straw. The barn was donated by former major league baseball players Kirk Gibson and Tim Birtsas and moved from its original located on Dixie Highway to Springfield Oaks in 2005. Today, the barn is used to host weddings and special events like the Ellis Barn Dance and the Michigan Antique Festival. The park also offers a multipurpose room for banquets, reunions and seminars as well as exhibit hall space. The grounds include two outdoor arenas.”
Whether you’re lover of mosaics, colorful statuettes, striking paintings, or pencil drawings, you’ll definitely find beauty at any one of the outdoor arts fairs across the county. Use our master list below to find fairs that are happening June through October:
Summer may be winding to a close and school may be returning, but Labor Day festivities are ramping up! This weekend, people throughout Oakland County will enjoy a welcome break to celebrate America’s workforce and the American Labor Movement.
Whether you celebrate with a backyard barbecue, or the annual Paint Creek Bridge Walk and Run, Oakland County is full of Labor Day activities. Be sure to check out our list for the full roster of Labor Day Weekend events.
For those seeking fresh air, a visit to an Oakland County Campground or participation in the Milford Labor Day 30K are guaranteed to excite. Are you artistically inclined? Art festivals like Royal Oak’s Ford Arts, Beats & Eats Festival may be for you. If knights and castles are your thing, make sure to stop by the Michigan Renaissance Festival, which will be open in Holly throughout Labor Day Weekend. And for those in search of cotton candy, funnel cakes, and amusement park attractions, the Michigan State Fair in Novi is the place to be.