Outdoor Water Play for Kids in the Lansing and Greater Radius

I’m really geeking out here you guys! I’ve been excited for this guide since Christmas time!

I turn into a kid overrun with excitement every time we plan to spend the day at a beach or splash pad. Better yet, I shriek with joy whenever we head to a water park! I’m not ashamed of my nerdy-ness. These kid-like trips with my children have kept me sane through all the crazy-momma-moments and my little cuties have as much fun as I do!

splash pad lansing michigan kids water playgrounds

As a kid, I would constantly hear adults say “I hate summer!” and “It’s just sooooo hot!”

I didn’t understand it at all back then because I LOVED summer and everything about it. As an adult, I’ve realized what they were talking about. Hot, sticky, unbearable air makes summer no fun unless you know how to beat the heat.

My formula to being able to say – without a doubt – “I LOVE summer!”   is simple: Water Play and Air Conditioning!


Lansing Area

Water parks, Splash Pads, and Pools Galore – Where to Find Water-play in Lansing

If you’re looking for a place with air conditioning don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with our indoor play guide. As for staying cool outdoors, here is a list that will cool you down and have the whole family enjoying the warmer months in Lansing.

kids swimming lake in lansing mi laingsburg water playground

Hawk Island

Splash Pad and Lake/Beach – FREE to play, $3 for parking. Yearly parking passes available.

Dates: Memorial Day Weekend – Labor Day Weekend

Address: 1601 E. Cavanaugh Rd. Lansing MI, 48910

Hawk Island Beach Kids water playground

East Lansing Family Aquatic Center

Water Park – $ County resident discount applies.

Dates: June 2 – September 3

Address: 6400 Abbot Rd, East Lansing, MI 48823

Hunter Park Pool

Pool – FREE to swim and park. Bring your ID to check in. Staffed by the Lansing YMCA.

Dates: June 11 – September 3

Address: 1400 E Kalamazoo St, Lansing, MI 48912

Hunter Park Pool Lansing water playgrounds

Moores Park

Pool – FREE to swim and park. Plan for a long walk from the parking lot to the pool. Two great playgrounds along the paved river path.

Dates: June 11 – August 19

Address: 420 Moores River Dr, Lansing, MI 48910

Moores Park Pool Lansing Michigan Kid water playgrounds

MSU Outdoor Pool

Pool – $ family rates available. Open to the public.

Dates:  Check website for real-time daily hours.

Address: Chestnut Road between IM Sports-West and Munn Ice Arena on MSU’s campus.

Lake Lansing South

Beach – FREE to play and swim. $3 for Parking. Yearly parking passes available.

Dates: Memorial Day Weekend – Labor Day Weekend

Address: 1621 Pike St, Haslett, MI 48840

Lake lansing beach kids playground Lansing Michigan

Valhalla Park

Beach – FREE to swim and park.

Dates:Memorial Day Weekend – Labor Day Weekend

Address: 2287 Pine Tree Rd, Holt, MI 48842

Park Lake

Beach – FREE/public swim access. Wiswasser Playground is across the street.

Address: 6064-6274 Park Lake Rd, Bath Twp, MI 48808

Kids swimming lake in lansing michigan kids water playground

Birchfield Park

 Beach. FREE to swim. $3 for parking. Yearly parking passes available.

Dates: Memorial Day Weekend – Labor Day Weekend

Address: 881 Grovenburg Rd, Holt, MI 48842

Jaycee Park

Splash Pad – FREE to play.

Dates: Coming summer 2018. Stay tuned for opening day information on our site or on their website.

Address: 525 E River St, Grand Ledge, MI 48837

St. Johns City Park/Spray Park

Splash Pad – FREE to play.

Dates: June 1 – Labor Day Weekend

Address: 805 W Park St, St Johns, MI 48879


Sleepy Hollow State Park

Beach – FREE to swim. Free parking with Michigan registration recreational passport. $3 for parking without.

Dates: Beach is open year round. Buoys up from Memorial Day Weekend – Mid September

Address: 7835 E Price Rd, Laingsburg, MI 48848

Cascades Falls and Splash Pad

Splash Pad – Kids 3 and under FREE to play. Ages 3 and up $2.

Dates: Memorial Day Weekend – Labor Day Weekend

Address: 1401 S Brown St, Jackson, MI 49203

Motz Park

Beach FREE to play.

Dates: Memorial Day – Labor Day

Address: 4630 N DeWitt Road, St. JohnsMI 48879

Water Play Worth the Drive (Under an Hour Away)

Que up your favorite playlist on spotify and head to these water destinations!

Our family travels a lot for both work and  adventure. We’ve almost got trip-taking down to a science. I pack up food for the family in my small cold-pack Trader Joe’s bag, fill up our water bottles, check or stock my ready-to-go beach tote (baby powder included for getting off sand), and grab a coffee on the way out to a dream day in the water.

Hunter Park Splash Pad and Pool Lansing water playgrounds

Driving home is a breeze. We’ve all had a great day in the sun and water. By the end of the trip my kids are so wonderfully exhausted that they are either asleep, taking in the scenery,  or continuing the bonding time with laughter and smiles.

Here is our list of great water play spots worth the drive under an hour radius around Lansing.

maplewood splah pad

Kensington Metropark

Water Park and beach – FREE to Swim, $6 and under per person for water park.

Drive Time: 50 min East 

Address: 4570 Huron River Pkwy, Milford, MI 48380

Nixon Water Park

Waterpark – $4 – $2 per person

Drive Time: (30 min south) 

Address: 400 E. North St. Jackson, MI 49201

Cherry Park Splash Pad

Splash Pad and Playground – FREE  to play.

Address: 725 Cherry St SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
cherry park splash pad grand rapids water playgrounds worth the drive

Jump Island Brighton  

Jump Island – $ Admissions and passes available. 

Drive Time: 51 min East

Address: 2880 West David Highway Ionia, MI, 48846

Millenium Park

Beach and Splash Pad – $4 – $2 per person 

Drive Time: 55 min West

Address: 1415 Maynard Ave SW, Walker, MI 49534

millennium park grand rapids kids water playground

Independence Lake Park

Beach and Waterpark – $ Cost per person to enter. See website for details.

Drive Time: 55 min East

Address 3200 Jennings Rd. Webster Township Whitmore Lake, MI 48189

Frederik Meijer Gardens

Splash Pad and Wading Pool – $ Admissions to the gardens, see site for details. 

Drive Time:  45 min West 

Address: 1000 E Beltline Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49525

Fredrick Meijer Gardens kids playing water playground grand rapids

Flash Flood 

Water Park – $Admissions to the park, see site for details. 

Drive Time: 45 min South West

Address: 35 Hamblin Avenue Battle Creek, MI 49017

Maplewood Splash Pad and Playground

Splash Pad and Playground- FREE to play and park.

Drive Time: 1 hour west

Address: 8000 12th Avenue JenisonMI 49428 – Located on 12th Ave, North of Baldwin St.

maplewood splah pad

Wayne County Family Aquatic Center

Water park – $Admissions to the park, see site for details. 

Drive Time: 1 h 29 min east. It’s a little over an hour, we made an exception on this one. Check out the pictures and you’ll see why.

Address: 12600 Chandler Park Dr. Detroit, MI 48213

Lamar Park

Splash Pad – FREE to play.

Drive Time: 30-40 min West

Address2561 Porter St, Wyoming, MI 49519 (near Portland)

lamar park splash pad kids water playground portland wyoming grand rapids

Turtle Cove Aquatic Center

Waterpark – $Admissions to the park, see site for details. 

Drive Time: 46 min east

Address13000 High Ridge Drive Brighton, MI 48114-9058

Sessions Lake State Park  

Beach – FREE to Swim. 

Drive Time: 35 min North West

Address: 2880 West David Highway Ionia, MI, 48846

Where Kids can Swim and Splash in the Lansing Area!

Did I mention how much I love water parks and pools? Believe me when I say, I’d LOVE to hear from you if you have another epic water play spot that we don’t have listed. Will you share it with our community at Lansing Family Fun? We’ll get it on the list for other families to enjoy.