The Belle Isle Conservancy, in partnership with the Detroit Recreation Department, is launching a new program -- Belle Isle Summer Saturdays (BLISS) -- to bring new energy to one of Metro Detroit's most popular parks. BLISS will take place on July 20, August 17 and September 21 (third Saturday of the month during the summer).

In addition to enjoying all that Belle Isle already offers on Saturdays, visitors will have opportunities to attend yoga classes, get tours of the island, rent kayaks and bikes, purchase food from food trucks, adopt rescued dogs, and much more. All programming is being undertaken in partnership with Detroit area non-profits, small businesses, corporations, community groups and individuals.

One special program is the “Beauty of Belle Isle Art Contest.” The contest will kick off on July 20, and Detroiters are asked to submit artwork (photos, drawings, sculptures, etc.) into the contest. Winners will win cash prizes and works of art will be on display at the finale event on September 21.

In efforts to transform the island, several existing volunteer groups have combined to form The Belle Isle Conservancy (BIC). The Conservancy has begun to mobilize resources to reinvest in the park and provide a positive experience for thousands of park user who return year after year.

Michele Hodges, president of the Belle Isle Conservancy states, “BLISS is a great opportunity for Metro-Detroit residents to experience this beautiful landmark and really enjoy Belle Isle. Many activities like these take place in other parks across the country and we’re happy to be able to create this experience for Detroiters.”

The Belle Isle Summer Series is made possible by the generous support of The GM Foundation and Kresge Foundation. Additional partners include: Project for Public Spaces, D: Hive, Detroit River Sports, Detroit Bus Company, Detroit Dog Rescue, Arts & Scraps, WDET, and the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy.

Attendees should visit the information tent, located at the Belle Isle Aquarium, for brochures, maps, and full details. BLISS hours of operation are 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. (see website for times). Organizations and businesses looking to participate, contact Tatiana Grant at: (248) 514-9620 or

About the Belle Isle Conservancy

The mission of the Belle Isle Conservancy (BIC) is to protect, preserve, restore and enhance the natural environment, historic structures and unique character of Belle Isle as a public park for the enjoyment of all – now and forever. For more information about BIC, visit:

Find the full activity schedule in the chart below:

Additional Information
Art contest
Throughout Island

Submissions accepted via website.  Prizes are: 1st place - $500, 2nd place - $350, 3rd - $100
Arts & Scraps
1 - 3 p.m.

Bike Rental
Belle Isle Aquarium
11 a.m. - 5 p.m.
$15 for 2 hours

DIA Inside/Out
Throughout Island


Dog adoptions
Dossin Museum
11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Aug. 17 only
Dossin Museum
Dossin Museum


Food trucks
Fleming’s Way (in front of Conservatory)
11 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Based on menu

Football 101 Training
Athletic Fields

Aug. 17 only
Giant Slide

$1/ride or $5/6 rides

Guided Tours
Starts at information booth infront of Belle Isle Aquarium
11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Kayak Rental
Belle Isle Beach
10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Single kayak - $15/hour, $50/all day  Tandem (2 people) - $20/hour, $65 all day

Painting Class
In front of Belle Isle White House
11 a.m. - 1 p.m.
$15 donation
 Aug. 17 only
Park Clean-Up/Stewardship Day
Meet at Nature Zoo
9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Segway Rental
Behind Belle Isle White House
1 - 6 p.m.
$35/hour plus $300 unit damage deposit
Helmets and closed-toe shoes required.  Must weigh between 100 and 260 lbs.
E. side of Belle Isle Casino
10 - 11 a.m.


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