What we're about

Solar Outdoors is a Southeast Michigan based club with more than 400 members. Founded in 1975, Solar Outdoors remains dedicated to helping its members enjoy nature and outdoor activities.
Membership in the club is required for full access to our Meetup site.  Annual dues are $4 for individuals.  Please read further if you are interested in becoming a club member.  Questions about membership can be directed to solarmembership@solaroutdoors.org.
Solar Outdoors members themselves organize workshops and events in which other members can participate. Whether you are a beginner or experienced wilderness enthusiast, you will find workshops, activities, and trips for all skill levels and many different interests including--but certainly not limited to!--backpacking, day hiking, bicycling, cross-country skiing, paddling, orienteering, wildflower and tree identification, whitewater rafting, and geocaching. Solar Outdoors members can also borrow gear from our store of packs, sleeping bags and pads, stoves, and other outdoor equipment for an annual member fee of $35.
To learn more about Solar Outdoors and its activities we encourage you to visit our website, www.solaroutdoors.org. There you will find a calendar of upcoming workshops and events. These sources give more information about who we are, what we do, and how we do it. We also welcome anyone interested in the club to attend our monthly meetings, held at St. Paul's Presbyterian Church, 27475 Five Mile Road, just west of Inkster Road, in Livonia on the last Tuesday of every month (except December) at 7 pm. SOLAR is not affiliated with St. Paul's or any other religious institution.  Directions are available here: http://solaroutdoors.com/solarmeetings.html.  The business meeting is followed by a program on a topic of general interest to our members.
Solar Outdoors uses Meetup as a tool of convenience for our members to quickly get information about upcoming classes and activities and to sign up and pay for these events online. That's why our Meetup group is restricted to paid members of the club and non-members have very limited access.
Once you have checked us out online and, we hope, in person by attending one of our monthly meetings, you can decide if becoming a member is right for you. If so, you can join the club by downloading the membership form (http://solaroutdoors.com/downloads/S.O.L.A....), filling it out, and either submitting it with a check for the dues payment at one of the meetings or mailing both to the address listed on the bottom of the membership form. Once you are a club member you will have access to this Meetup group.
Thank you for your interest in Solar Outdoors. We hope to meet you soon.

Upcoming events (4+)

Grand Island Hiking Backpacking Trip 2022

Needs a location


Dates of hiking portion of the trip July 2-5, 2022
Maximum number: 6 people
Cost: $40 for campsites and ferry ticket
July 2: 2 pm ferry from Munising to island and hike about 4 miles to campsite on east side of island.
July 3: hike to about 8.5 miles to on north side of the island.
July 4: hike 6.5 miles to campsite on the west side of the island.
July 5: hike 3.5 miles to ferry back to Munising on 1:00 pm ferry.

Additional Costs:
Your own transportation to Munising, MI
Lodging before going to Grand Island if you come up early
We may need National Park Passes (I have one which will cover 4 people.)

Optional: Drive up early for site seeing around Munising and Pictured Rocks National Lake Shore and stay overnight in Munising, MI

Hosted by Laura Miller Contact information:[masked]; [masked]

Paddle to the Symphony 2022

Needs a location

Paddle to the Symphony is a Celebration of Southeast Michigan outdoor groups and a reunion for Hostelling International members – the founders of the event. This annual tradition is open to HI-USA members, SOLAR members, and to any group, club, or individual. HI and SOLAR members receive a discount to paddle (membership status will be confirmed).

This year’s Paddle to the Symphony will be Saturday, July 9, 2022, and the concert will be “Michigan Philharmonic at the Movies." It will feature music from old to new movies – including new music from “Encanto.

The event is collaborating with Heavner Canoe to provide a fun evening on the water while enjoying the sounds of the Michigan Philharmonic. Meet at Kensington Metro Park in Milford, Michigan at the shoreline, near the North Martindale Picnic Shelter.

Do NOT follow the signs to the concert, as we are positioned across the lake. Instead, follow the signs to “Martindale Beach,” park, and meet us at the white pop-up tent next to the shelter. Anyone going on the water should arrive by 7:00 p.m.

The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. While the concert itself is free, the paddle portion has fees.

You may RSVP here on Meetup to let others know you are attending, however you MUST register directly with the event to attend. Details and Registration are Now Open at www.PaddleToTheSymphony.com.

Paddle Options:
$5 discount per boat for HI or SOLAR members!

Single Kayak (Seats 1 Person)
$40 per person ($40 per boat)

Tandem Kayak (Seats 2 People)
$30 per person ($60 per boat)

Canoes (Seats 2-3 People)
Middle passenger should be less than 100 lbs
$30 per person ($60 per boat)

Bring Your Own Personal Boat
Park in the lot and we will assist portage to the shoreline if needed
$20 per person / boat

The fee pays for refreshments, snacks, and the organization of the event. We have special permission to launch from this area. Event staff will also provide moving your canoe or kayak from the parking lot to the shoreline. You may NOT drive to the shore in your own car (this is a Metropark rule).

Registration Now Open at www.PaddleToTheSymphony.com
Online registration will include a link to sign an online waiver. Everyone going in a Heavner boat MUST complete a waiver. Thank you.

Water, soft drinks, and snacks will be available for everyone. All canoes and kayaks MUST have at least one adult (age 16+) per watercraft. Heavner boat rentals come with life jackets (PFD) and paddles.

Please Note: With any option you choose, you will still be responsible for the park vehicle entrance fee, so carpool if you can. The daily fee is $10 BEFORE 5:00 p.m. (AFTER 5:00 p.m. the daily entrance fee will be $15 for this special event). So, come early for the better rate to get into the park - enjoy the park - meet us at 6:00 p.m.

We'll all meet at the white pop-up tent NEAR the North Martindale Beach (Picnic Shelter "C") or at the shoreline. Looking at the water from the parking lot, the shelter is to the right and near the shore.

GPS Map to Shelter C: https://goo.gl/maps/KAiiychEyWS2

Kensington Park Map: http://www.metroparks.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/2017-Kensington-Map1.pdf?x91894

Paddle Event Timeline:
6:00 p.m. Official Reception
6:30 p.m. Canoe Launch Begins
7:30 p.m. Concert Starts
9:00 p.m. Start to Paddle Back
9:30 p.m. Canoes Return
10:00 p.m. Thank you and Goodnight

What to Bring:
Sunscreen and/or Hat
Change of clothes (just in case)
Jacket and Lawn Chairs

The DNR has the final say regarding watercraft going on the water. If weather conditions restrict canoeing then we will shuttle attendees to the concert and back. Heavner Canoe will offer vouchers to return to canoe if this happens. Please note this has only happened once in all the years of the event.

Saturday July Moonlight Paddle.

Needs a location

Canoe or kayak toward the setting sun to Milford Central Park. Walk into town for dinner and/or dessert. Paddle back under the moon and ending the night by socializing around a bonfire.
This popular event is perfect for a date night, a family outing, or an adventure with friends. All skill levels welcome. Please Dress For The Weather. Headlamps and drinking water recommended.

Please show up early. There could be a long line to get your boat.

Saturdays 2022 Dates - Launch Time, Sunset, Moonrise

July 9 - 7:30 pm, 8:16 PM, 4:09 PM
August 13- 7:30 pm, 7:58 PM, 9:33 PM
September 10- 7:00 pm, 7:30 PM, 8:03 PM
October 8 - 6:00 pm, 7:00 PM, 6:33 PM

Price per person:
Canoe $30 ($60 per boat) (Seats 2-3 People)
Tandem Kayak $30 ($60 per boat) (Seats 2 People)
Single Kayak $35
Personal Boat $20
Kids under 6 are Free.

There is a two-person minimum for each canoe and tandem kayak.

Pre-registration is recommended – walk-ins are subject to availability. Visit https://heavnercanoe.com/moonlight to complete the registration form or call (248)[masked]. Especially if you want a kayak. Those who pre-registered will receive their boat first.

Fine Print:
Online registration ends 24 hours prior to each event. Dinner is NOT included in the price. If you do NOT already have a State Recreation Passport, it is available for purchase at the canoe rental.

In the case of severe weather (i.e. high winds, thunderstorm or tornado watch or warning, sustained periods of heavy rain), we will cancel the event. You will receive an email and/or phone call to inform you of the cancellation before the scheduled event.
If the weather looks bad and you haven't heard anything then call Heavner's before you leave your home to see if it's been canceled.

Huron River and Lake Kayaking

Needs a location


Enjoy a morning of kayaking down the Huron River through a chain of lakes in Pinckney, MI.
This will be a combination of river and open water kayaking. Estimated travel time is 2 hours at a slow-to-moderate pace. This is not difficult kayaking, but kayaking experience is recommended. The river moves slowly and is very easy to navigate and we hug the shore of the lakes as much as possible, but there will be some open-water kayaking.

What to Bring: Kayak, a life vest for each kayaker, water, snack and water shoes to prevent cutting your feed on the lake/river bottom.
Additional Kayak?: If you can bring an additional kayak for someone who does not have one, please let me know.
Optional after Kayaking Lunch: Zukey Lake Tavern: http://www.zukeylaketavern.com/

If you pay below via PayPal, the cost will be $6 (to cover meetup fees); $5 fee if you pay via cash/check

Past events (1,297)

Annual Solar Outdoors Picnic

Needs a location

Photos (5,617)

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