This first-time event welcomes outdoor adventurers, sand dune advocates, academic researchers and tourism professionals with a casual mix of recreation, information, and local food and beer, all in celebration of the beauty and value of our amazing natural asset: LAKE MICHIGAN!
Join Michigan Environmental Council, Heart of the Lakes, and West Michigan Environmental Action Council, and connect with others who promote, advocate for, and research this vital part of our landscape.
MAY 7, 2017
Sunday Funday! Meet at the Holiday Inn Muskegon Harbor for recreational outings with fellow dune lovers. Nominal contributions are requested to help organize each activity.
Option A.) Group bike ride down to Pere Marquette beach. Bring your own bike if you have one; helmets strongly encouraged. Some bike rentals will also be available for a fee; please bring your own helmet as helmet rental is not available.
Option B.) Trail run in the dunes led by local running enthusiasts. Small groups will carpool to nearby trail for a 3 mile run along Lake Michigan next to the dunes.
Option C.) 1.5 hour kayak float on the Muskegon River, organized through a local guide service. Cost includes kayak and transportation to/from hotel.
Dinner at Rebel Pies in downtown Muskegon.
Coastal films and brews at Unruly Brewing.
MAY 8, 2017
Morning Yoga with Root Down Yoga (short walk from the hotel)
8:00 – 9:00 a.m.
Registration and Caffeine at the Holiday Inn – Muskegon Harbor
9:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Option A.) Dunes Field Trip
Field trip features a visit to Hoffmaster State Park, a brief stop at Lake Harbor Park in Norton Shores, and a visit and hike at North Ottawa Dunes with April Scholtz (Land Conservancy of West Michigan). Pre-registration is required & transportation is included.
Option B.) Sharing and Discussion Sessions
9:15 – 10:00 a.m.
Economic and Community Benefits of Outdoor Recreation: Candy Kozeluh (Marquette CVB) and Lori Booth (Surfrider Foundation)
10:05 – 11:10 a.m.
Dune and Beach Stewardship Efforts: Jamie Cross (Alliance for the Great Lakes – Clean Beaches Initiative) and Shaun Howard (Michigan Dune Alliance)
11:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Evolution in Dune Management Science: Suzanne DeVries Zimmerman and Ed Hansen (Hope College) and John Paskus (Michigan Natural Features Inventory)
12:15 – 1:45 p.m.
Lunch with keynote speakers and awards. Drs. Robert Richardson and Sarah Nichols of Michigan State University will unveil a new social and economic value survey for the dunes. Heart of the Lakes will present its annual Conservation Hero awards.
2:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Case Studies in Protection and Access to Coastal Dunes: David Foote (Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy), Kathy Evans (West Michigan Shoreline Regional Development Commission and Michigan Environmental Justice Working Group), and (Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness – invited)
3:15 – 4:15 p.m.
Stories from our Dunes National Lakeshores: Scott Tucker (Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Superintendent), Lynda Lancaster (Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore Civic Engagement), and (Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore including Grand Sable Dunes – invited)
Happy Hour Session at Pigeon Hill Brewery: Sharing local opportunities and challenges in coastal sand dune protection and conservation.
Overnight rooms are reserved at Holiday Inn & Conference Center Downtown Muskegon. Guests should call the front desk (231-722-0100 x3) and ask for the Michigan Dune Summit group block, before April 23rd 2017. Mention the group for a discounted rate of $89/night for May 7. To receive tax exemption, guests will need to bring their federal tax exempt form with them or fax/email it prior to arrival.
Financial assistance for this event provided, in part, by the Michigan Coastal Zone Management Program, Office of the Great Lakes, Department of Environmental Quality and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration