As the sun sets earlier and nights become darker, there’s more opportunity to see the stars at night.

Dress up in layers, throw some foot warmers in your boots and enjoy the stars at one of these parks:

Whitehouse Nature Center in Albion

Albion College runs this natural area, using it as a classroom to learn about the environment and agriculture. It’s also an ideal spot for hiking, so make sure you have your trekking poles. There are six miles of trails that loop around forests, ponds and a prairie. 

Historic Bridge Park in Battle Creek

Sit at one of the picnic tables at Historic Bridge Park with a thermos full of hot cocoa. You could also roast potatoes or make s’mores in the park grills for a toasty treat.

Leila Arboretum in Battle Creek

Park by the museum building, where they’ve held astronomy events. There’s a clear view from on top of the hill. It’s also a great spot for sledding, so bring along a couple of sleds.

Brooks Nature Area in Marshall

The trails out at Brooks Nature Area are flat, which makes them popular for cross-country skis and snowshoes. For a clear view of the sky, go along the South Prairie Trail through fields by Stuart Lake.

Fort Custer Recreation Area in Augusta

If you want to go rustic, rent a cabin at this state park. The Riverside cabin accommodates six people and has gas heat, grill and a fire ring. You’ll be able to build a big fire and sit under the stars. Or take a walk in the woods, listening for owls.