A Great Day in Lansing, MI
Spend a day exploring the best Lansing, MI has to offer! Take a look at your favorite classic cars at the R. E. Olds Transportation Museum, stroll along the Lansing River Trail and stop at all the great places along the way, explore an important cornerstone of Michigan at the Library of Michigan, walk back in time at the Turner-Dodge House, and see Michigan’s own version of Hollywood’s Walk of Fame right here in Lansing. With these five family friendly activities you can experience history, great Lansing outdoor space, and more.
Warmer weather is so close, we can almost feel it. These activities will get you outside to enjoy the great weather, inside for some interactive fun, and walking around to be a part of all the fun things.
E. Olds Transportation Museum
Opened to the public in 1981, the R. E. Olds Transportation Museum is dedicated to the inventor and entrepreneur who founded Olds Motor Works and REO Motor Car Company, Ransom Eli Olds. Olds played an important part in the growth of the automotive industry through his numerous inventions and innovations, including his creation of the automobile assembly line.
The museum has evolved over the years to encompass historical artifacts relevant to the history of the transportation industry not just within Lansing, but also throughout the nation.
With guided museum tours available, as well as the option to wander through the museum on your own from 10 am to 5 pm Tuesday through Saturday, the R. E. Olds Transportation Museum is a great way to start your day of exploration in Lansing.
Library of Michigan
For over 175 years the Library of Michigan has worked to provide the best service to the State of Michigan, the state government, and the residents throughout the area. A fundamental component to the government, the Library of Michigan began its life in 1828, before Michigan was even a state. The main duties were to collect, maintain, and safely store the territorial laws and papers that made up the foundation of the Michigan state government.
Stopping by the Library of Michigan gives you access to a wealth of history and a glimpse into a structure that was instrumental in the formation of the Michigan state government. Check out some books while you and your family are there – after all, they have over 1 million titles and can spare a few.
Michigan Walk of Fame
Great things come from Michigan, and these great things often come from the innovations and contributions of great people. The Michigan Walk of Fame was created to honor the Michiganders who significantly contributed to the state of Michigan or to the United States in general. Conveniently located within walking distance to the Library of Michigan, the Walk of Fame is set in the Washington Square sidewalks of the Lansing commercial district. You will be able to see stars dedicated to people like Jeff Daniels, Henry Ford, and Stevie Wonder.
The Turner-Dodge House has been an iconic landmark in the Lansing community since the 1800s. Housing generations of two influential families, the Turner-Dodge House was home to the family of Marion and James Turner and eventually Abigail Turner and her husband Frank L. Dodge.
The Turners came to Lansing, MI in 1847 and became involved in the local politics and society of the community before it became the State Capitol. They also helped develop the economic and educational opportunities within the city of Lansing through the creation of the first plank road in the city, the initiation of a rail line from Jackson, and generous support to the Michigan Female College, among many other things.
Frank L. Dodge married Abigail Turner, daughter of Marion and James Turner, and bought the Turner-Dodge House in 1888. Frank and Abby were deeply connected to the political and social landscape of Lansing, and became known for their work with unions, the anti-slavery movement, and education.
The modern day Turner-Dodge House is open for tours and other events.
Lansing River Trail
Beautifully maintained and perfectly situated through the best parts of town, the Lansing River Trail stretches from Jolly Road to Old Town with great stops in between. After leaving the Turner-Dodge House, take a leisurely stroll along the trail and take breaks at the Brenke Fish Ladder to watch fish swim up the Grand River, downtown Lansing for lunch, Hawk Island Park to rent a pedal boat, Lansing City Market to see all that Michigan farmers have to offer, and Old Town for dinner.
Lansing is full of historical and modern activities that are fun, family-friendly, and affordable. Once the warm weather finally arrives, don’t stay inside all day! Take a Saturday and explore the city and all it has to offer.