PROGRAMS and EVENTS

The Redbud Reveal

The annual Redbud Reveal ceremony at the Haven Hill Gate House is a season-opening event at Highland State Recreation Area in Highland/White Lake, Michigan that celebrates the arrival of the spring and summer season. The 2016 Redbud Reveal will be held on Saturday, May 14 from 10:00 am until 4:00 pm (rain date Sunday). An Antiques and Collectibles Sale will be held at the Edsel Ford Barn as a fundraiser again this year. Visitors are encouraged to come and see the beautiful and historic Haven Hill section of the Highland State Recreation Area which includes the historic Haven Hill Gate House, the Edsel Ford Barn, the picturesque Carriage House, and the Haven Hill Lodge footprint up on Haven Hill. At 1:00 pm, FOHRA President Mr. Dick Russell will give a public address at the Edsel Ford Barn or on the Gate House lawn highlighting the Friends group’s recent activities and event plans for the coming year. Light refreshments will be served on the lawn around Edsel and Eleanor Fords’ wonderful estate entrance. Come on out and join area residents to see if the redbuds are in bloom at Haven Hill!


Art on the Hill/Artist In Residence

FOHRA believes that the incorporation of Art in our efforts at Haven Hill is critical to our mission, as Edsel and Eleanor Ford were key community benefactors of the Arts in southeast Michigan. To that end we began our earliest of programs in 2013 "Art on the Hill". Roadside bollards along
Haven Hill Road and up the picturesque winding path to the Haven Hill Lodge are now used each year to display artist materials for the public to enjoy. "Maps as Art" which highlighted the Oakland County Planning and Development map collection was displayed several times in 2013 and was enjoyed by all who attended. A display area around a Jens Jensen-inspired conversation ring has also been built at the Haven Hill Gate House. The interior of the Gate House garage has also been temporarily used as an art studio and informal gallery. 

2014 Artist Residency 
In partnership and mutual support of the Friends of Highland Recreation Area and the
Michigan Department of Natural Resources Parks Division, the first ever Artist Residency at Highland State Recreation Area took place in 2014.
“Memories in Time - The People of Haven Hill" pays tribute to those people who have lived in connection, appreciation, and support of the unique natural character of the place we today call Haven Hill. An artwork series of sketches and paintings of select individuals, past and present, associated with the story of Historic Haven Hill was produced and will soon be a part of the Friends of Highland Recreation Area collection.


Haven Hill Festival

The Haven Hill Festival is a celebration of the amazing natural and historic resources of the Highland State Recreation Area. This year’s free event on Saturday, August 27, 2016 will include an 1860’s vintage base ball game, summer foods, a live Brass Band, vintage Model A Ford cars, Haven Hill history displays, children’s activities, and art displays. The event promotes awareness of the wonderful natural and historic resources that make up Highland State Recreation Area and the historic former Edsel and Eleanor Ford Haven Hill Estate.


The Festival is to be held between 10 am and 3 pm at the Goose Meadow Picnic site. The base ball game will begin at 10:00 am. Several activities will be held throughout the park during the Festival such as an art display at the Gate House, Haven Hill natural area photography display on Haven Hill, self-guided tours of the Haven Hill Lodge grounds, and volunteers dressed in period costumes.  

The park can be entered on 5200 Highland Road, M-59 between Duck Lake and Bogey Lake roads. The Festival It is provided to the public at no charge, and entry into the state park is now via the Recreation Passport on your license plate.

The Haven Hill Festival is an alcohol-free, family-oriented event in its' 6th year at Highland State Recreation Area.  The celebration has grown yearly, and will continue to positively benefit all of those who attend as well as the surrounding communities now and into the future.


Snow Snake

The Chief Pontiac Trail Events Committee organizes a "Snow Snake" race at the Edsel Ford Barn each year... come on out and see young and old children play with snakes in winter!


Dine with Edsel and Eleanor

Tables are set and beautifully decorated for 2 or more at the Dine with Edsel and Eleanor fundraiser by the Ladies of FOHRA. Each table has a theme and is decorated by local individuals or groups. The event benefits the Friends of Highland Recreation Area and their efforts to rejuvenate the Haven Hill structures of Highland State Recreation Area that once belonged to Edsel and Eleanor Ford. The Ladies of FOHRA presented the second table setting event at the Historic Highland Station House on Sunday October 5th, 2014 from Noon to 5:00 P.M. For more information visit www.dinewithedsel.com. No date has yet been set for the 2015 DWEE event.

The Haven Hill Adventure Quest

The Haven Hill “Adventure Quest” Trail Hike provides a unique way for participants to discover some special Michigan history in the outdoors. The Haven Hill section of the Highland State Recreation Area was once a country estate owned by Edsel and Eleanor Ford. It is a treasure trove of history and natural wonder in a beautiful outdoor setting.