Rules and Regulations

The Huron-Clinton Metroparks, in order to maintain and operate the public parks and parkways under its control in the best interests of the people of the metropolitan district, and in order to insure maximum recreational benefits from these facilities, has adopted the general rules and regulations set forth herein under powers granted to it by Act No. 147, Public Acts of Michigan of 1939. Entry into lands of the Metroparks and enjoyment of parks and park facilities is a privilege which is extended to members of the public only during their continued compliance with these rules and regulations.

The Metroparks strictly prohibits unlawful discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, age and handicap. Individuals may file complaints with the Huron-Clinton Metroparks at 810-227-2757 or the Director of The Michigan Department of Civil Rights, Capitol House Bldg., 110 W. Michigan Ave, Ste 800, Lansing, MI 48933.

1. PRESERVATION OF PROPERTY, NATURAL RESOURCES AND WILDLIFE

No person shall injure, deface, disturb, befoul nor in any manner destroy or cause to be destroyed any part of any park or parkway or any facility building, sign, structure, equipment, utility or other property found therein. No person shall dig for, remove, injure or destroy any tree, flower, shrub, plant or growing thing, or any rock, mineral, artifact or other material within the boundaries of any park. No person shall kill, trap, hunt, pursue or in any manner disturb or cause to be disturbed any wild bird or animal within the boundaries of any park, without written permission of the Metroparks.

2. FIRES

Cooking fires may be built only in picnic grills/stoves or in other equipment or space approved by the Metroparks, except ground fires at camp areas and only in such areas or parks so designated by the Metroparks; no person shall start or cause to be started any other fire whatsoever in any park or parkway. Only place ash/coals in a barrel labeled “Hot Coals” and NOT on the ground, in trash cans or elsewhere.

3. ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES

Beer and wine may only be consumed in picnic areas or areas designated by the Metroparks. Alcoholic beverages may be permitted in accordance with Rules & Regulations of the Michigan Liquor Control Commission and only in areas designated by the Metroparks. No person shall possess any alcoholic beverages in any park or park area during times when notice is posted of such closure.

4. SWIMMING, BATHING AND WADING

Swimming, bathing and wading are permitted only in those areas provided for that purpose and so posted by the Metroparks.

5. DOGS AND PETS

Dogs and other pets are permitted in parks only when kept on a leash not over six feet in length and kept under the immediate control of a responsible person. They are not permitted in nature & farm areas, on beaches or in buildings. The owner will assume full responsibility for all pets. Guide dogs and assistance dogs are permitted in all areas. No person shall ride or lead any horse within the boundaries of any park, except in areas designated by the Metroparks and in possession of a Metroparks bridle tag.

6. FIREARMS AND OTHER WEAPONS

No person shall possess or control any rifle, shotgun or other firearm, bow & arrow, slingshot, pellet gun, air rifle, fireworks, explosives, or other dangerous substances within the boundaries of any park, without written permission of the Metroparks; provided, that this rule shall not apply to any law enforcement officer who has been duly appointed by the government of the United States, the State of Michigan or any county, municipality or other political subdivision of the State of Michigan; and provided, further that this section shall not prohibit a person from legally carrying firearms in accordance with state law, including transporting an unloaded shotgun in a case within the boundaries of Lake Erie or Lake St. Clair Metroparks for the purpose of using Lake Erie or Lake St. Clair Metroparks as access to a permitted hunting area. Nothing in this provision shall pre-empt Public Act 319 of 1990.

7. COMMERCIAL ACTIVITIES

No person or organization other than the Metroparks, its hires and licensees shall, while on lands of the Metroparks, advertise, offer for hire, vend or sell any service, food, beverage, merchandise or other personal property or advertise, carry on or conduct any other business or commercial activity, nor shall any person or organization beg or solicit contributions or donations while on lands of the Metroparks.

8. SIGNS AND HANDBILLS

Handbills, newspapers or other circulars may be offered or distributed only by passing them hand-to-hand; such distribution will be allowed only in automobile parking lots, unless other areas for such distribution are designated by the Metroparks. No person shall post, fasten, paint or affix any placard, bill, notice or sign upon any structure, tree or automobile within any park or parkway, except that temporary directional signs for group picnics or events may be placed on signposts designated for such purposes by the Metroparks or areas as designated by the Metroparks and must be removed at the conclusion of the event.

9. MOTOR VEHICLES

The maximum speed limit for all vehicles shall be 35 miles an hour, except where otherwise posted. Motor vehicles will be driven only on designated park roads and parked only in designated parking spaces.

10. OFF-THE-ROAD VEHICLES

No person shall operate off-the-road, within the boundaries of any park, any motor-driven vehicle, including, by way of example but not by way of limitation, any minibike, motorcycle, dune mobile, snowmobile, converted snowmobile, all-terrain vehicle, amphibious vehicle, Segway, Hoverboard or similar motorized device.

11. DISPOSAL OF REFUSE

No person shall deposit or abandon in any park or parkway or in the waters on or adjacent to any park or on the ice thereof any garbage, sewage, refuse, trash, waste or other obnoxious material, except in receptacles or pits provided for such purposes.

12. CAMPING

Camping is restricted to special areas and times or organized youth groups who have obtained written permission in advance of the camping period and who have paid the camping fee designated by the Metroparks. Camping is permitted only in those areas designated for that purpose by the Metroparks. Tents or shelters are not permitted in picnic areas without permission from the Metroparks.

13. CLOSING PARKS OR PORTIONS THEREOF

Any park or parkway, or portion thereof, may be closed entirely or closed to certain uses (including the use or possession of alcoholic beverages) for such period of time as may be determined by the Director of the Metroparks or their representative. During such periods of time no person shall enter upon or occupy any such park or portion thereof contrary to posted regulations.

14. PICNICKING

Picnicking is permitted only in designated picnic areas. Picnic groups of 50 persons or more are requested to register with the park office; such registration, however, does not ensure the registering group of exclusive use of a picnic area. Roping-off or fencing of park areas will not be permitted without permission from the Metroparks. Shelters are available and may be reserved for a fee.

15. LARGE GROUP EVENTS

No field day, carnival, concert, rally, dramatic presentation or the like at which more than 50 persons are in attendance or can reasonably be expected to be in attendance (hereafter called “Large Group Events”) shall be held or conducted on lands of the Metroparks unless a permit for such event has first been granted by the Metroparks. Permits for Large Group Events must be obtained no later than four (4) weeks prior to the event. Requirements for obtaining permits are available at the park office, and are subject to both individual park and local township review and approval.

16. MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS, RADIOS AND SOUND AMPLIFYING DEVICES

No person shall operate or play any musical instrument, radio, loudspeaker, public address system or sound amplifying equipment of any kind within the boundaries of any park in such a manner as to cause the sound emanating therefrom to exceed a loudness of 75 decibels when measured on the 70 dB scale at a distance of 15 feet from the sound source without a written permit issued by the Metroparks. Metroparks reserves the right to ban amplified equipment in designated areas of the parks.

17. PARK HOURS

All parks under the jurisdiction of the Metroparks shall be open from daylight to 10 pm unless otherwise posted. No person shall be allowed on park grounds after posted hours without written permission from the Metroparks and may be subject to ticketing or other actions.

18. NATURE TRAILS AND FOOT TRAILS

Nature trails and foot trails shall be used for walking traffic during daylight hours only. Picnicking and fires are prohibited in or on any nature trail, foot trail or nature study area. Bicycles, horses, pets, by way of examples are prohibited but are not all-inclusive. Use of an off road vehicle is prohibited (see #10.)

19. HIKE-BIKE TRAILS

Whenever a usable and designated path has been provided near a roadway, cyclists, hikers, joggers, runners and in-line skaters shall use that path and shall not use the roadway. However, it is recommended that the speed limit on the hike-bike trails is not to exceed 10 miles per hour, so cyclists riding at faster speeds shall use the roadway. Bicyclists shall yield the right of way to pedestrians and shall give an audible signal before overtaking and passing a pedestrian. Users of hike-bike trails shall obey all other posted regulations. The use of protective equipment is encouraged on all Metropark trails.

20. CONTROL OF WATERCRAFT

Watercraft operators must comply with Federal & State marine safety regulations, local watercraft ordinances and Metroparks rules. All trailered watercraft are required to pay the Metropark boat fee. A personal floatation device is required for every passenger in a vessel. Michigan law requires that children under 6 years of age must wear an approved P.F.D. when riding on the open deck of any vessel. No person shall operate a motorboat at a speed in excess of 10 statute miles per hour, except an authorized patrol boat or emergency rescue craft. No person shall operate any watercraft so as to tow, or otherwise assist in the propulsion of, a person on water skis, water sled, surfboard, or other similar contrivance, or permit himself to be so towed. Rubber rafts and all floating devices other than boats may be used only in swim areas or special designated areas. Violation of this rule is subject to ticketing or other actions.

21. MOTOR VEHICLE PERMIT

All motor vehicles must obtain and have affixed to the vehicle, a valid Metropark motor vehicle permit. This permit must be completely affixed with its own adhesive to the lower left hand corner of the windshield (taping to windshield is prohibited), except for motorcycles. Violation of this rule is subject to ticketing or other actions.

22. FREE SPEECH

The Metroparks recognizes and respects the rights of citizens engaging in free speech. Some kinds of speech such as obscenity, defamation and fighting words are not protected by the First Amendment and are prohibited to the extent governed by law. Further, no person or groups shall interfere with other people’s free speech rights. The Metroparks will cooperate with those engaging in protected free speech to resolve any conflict between a person’s or group’s protected free speech rights and any regulation of those rights. For a copy of the Metroparks full “Free Speech Guidelines,” please contact the Administrative Office at 810-227-2757 or visit www.metroparks.com.

23. HORSES

Horses must remain on established, designated trails only. Horses may not be ridden on park roads or through picnic or nature center areas, or any other area so posted. The cleaning of horse trailers is not permitted on park property. Each rider must obtain a Horse Riding Permit/Bridle Tag available at the park office. Violation of this rule is subject to ticketing or other actions.

24. HOT AIR BALLOONS AND UNMANNED AIRCRAFT

Launching, landing, or operating aircraft (e.g. hot air balloons, helicopter, seaplane, etc.) or unmanned aircraft (e.g. radio controlled airplanes, drones, sky lanterns, etc.) from or on the lands and waters administrated by the Huron-Clinton Metropolitan Authority is prohibited except in the case of an emergency or as approved in writing by the Director or designee. Violation of this rule is subject to ticketing or other actions.

25. FACILITY USAGE

Metropark staff will designate the usage of all facilities within the property of the Metroparks.

26. OTHER ACTIVITIES

Other activities not provided for specifically in these rules may be subject to posted regulations by the Metroparks or included in established general, firearms, and watercraft ordinances, adopted by the local townships. Violation of this rule is subject to ticketing or other actions.

27. INFLATABLES

Inflatables are permitted in the Metroparks only when the following criteria is met:
a. Prior approval from the Metroparks.
b. Provide a certificate of insurance naming HCMA as an additional insured.

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