12 Things to Do in Southfield, Michigan

Last Updated on March 5, 2024 by Emily Johnson

Southfield is a city in Oakland County, Michigan, located just north of Detroit. With a population of over 70,000, Southfield serves as a major commercial and business hub for the metro Detroit area. The city features a vibrant downtown, plentiful parks and outdoor spaces, exciting entertainment options, and a diverse culinary scene. This article will highlight 12 of the top things to see and do when visiting Southfield. Whether you’re a local resident or traveling from out of town, Southfield has something to offer visitors of all ages and interests.

The Southfield Town Center serves as the heartbeat of downtown Southfield. This open-air pedestrian plaza features shops, restaurants, a movie theater, a park with an interactive water fountain, and regular community events. Visitors can browse the public art installations scattered throughout the Town Center, grab a bite to eat at one of the dozen-plus eateries, catch a movie at the AMC theater, or relax by the fountain.

The Southfield Public Library is also located right next to the Town Center. With lively ambiance and plenty to see and do, an afternoon at the Southfield Town Center allows you to experience the energy of this bustling Detroit suburb.

Activity NumberDescription
1Visit a historic house showcasing Thomas Edison’s inventions.
2Enjoy diverse performances at a local arts center.
3Relax and explore nature in a historical park.
4Engage in various indoor activities at an adventure park.
5Discover local history through exhibits at a public library.
6Stroll through the grounds of a historic college campus.
7Explore African American cultural exhibits at a dedicated museum.
8Experience shopping at Southfield’s premier retail destinations.
9Volunteer with animals at a local humane society.
10Play golf at a scenic course.
11Challenge yourself at an indoor parkour and ninja training facility.
12Taste local wines at a Michigan wine-tasting room.

The Southfield Town Center hosts over 75 community events each year, ranging from fitness activities like yoga in the park to live music performances to craft fairs and farmers markets during warmer months. Be sure to check the event calendar before your visit to Southfield to see if any festivals or community gatherings are happening during your stay. Events like the annual Southfield Jazz Festival, Summer Solstice Jazz and Heritage Festival, and Winter Glow bring residents together to celebrate community, culture, and artistry through live entertainment.

1. Spend an Afternoon at the Thomas A. Edison House

Name and Location: Spend an Afternoon at the Thomas A. Edison House, located at 23000 Michigan Ave, Dearborn, MI 48124.

History and Significance: The Thomas A. Edison House, also known as the Miller-Edison Homestead, was the childhood home of the famous inventor Thomas Edison. The house was built in 1854 and has been restored to its appearance during Edison’s time.

What to Expect: Visitors can tour the house and learn about Edison’s early life and the inventions he created while living there. The house features period furnishings and exhibits on Edison’s work and legacy.

Visitor Information: The Thomas A. Edison House is open for tours Tuesday through Sunday from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm. Admission is $10 for adults and $5 for children ages 5-12. Parking is available on-site.

One of Southfield’s most unique attractions is the Thomas A. Edison House. Located on the grounds of the Henry Ford Estate, this historic home dates back to 1916 when inventor Thomas Edison moved in. The estate and gardens have been carefully preserved and showcase Edison’s many inventions.

Guided tours allow you to see where Edison lived with his family and peek inside his private laboratory where he invented the alkaline storage battery and perfected advances in cement and rubber technologies.

2. See a Show at the Berman Center for the Performing Arts

Name and Location: See a Show at the Berman Center for the Performing Arts, located at 6600 W Maple Rd, West Bloomfield Township, MI 48322.

History and Significance: The Berman Center for the Performing Arts is a state-of-the-art theater that hosts a variety of performances, including music, dance, theater, and comedy. The center opened in 2011 and has become a cultural hub for the West Bloomfield community.

What to Expect: Visitors can enjoy high-quality performances in a beautiful and intimate setting. The center features a main stage theater with seating for 600, as well as a smaller black box theater for more experimental productions.

Visitor Information: The Berman Center for the Performing Arts box office is open Monday through Friday from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm and Saturday from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm. Ticket prices vary depending on the performance. Parking is available on-site.

As one of the premier performing arts venues in southeast Michigan, the Berman Center for the Performing Arts is a must-see. Originally opening in 1974 as the causeway, this 650-seat proscenium theater hosts diverse shows and performances throughout the year.

From Broadway musicals to ballet, jazz to comedy shows, and celebrity concerts to community theater productions, the Berman Center calendar has something for all tastes. Before or after the show, enjoy a drink or meal at Benny’s on the Berman food court.

3. Relax at Burgh Historical Park

Name and Location: Relax at Burgh Historical Park, located at Northeast corner of Civic Center Drive and Berg Road, Southfield, MI 48076.

History and Significance: Burgh Historical Park is a 9-acre park that features a restored 19th-century village with historic buildings and exhibits on local history. The park was established in 1974 to preserve and share the history of Southfield and the surrounding area.

What to Expect: Visitors can explore the historic buildings, including a one-room schoolhouse, a blacksmith shop, and a log cabin. The park also features walking trails, picnic areas, and a playground.

Visitor Information: Burgh Historical Park is open daily from dawn to dusk. Admission is free. Parking is available on-site. Guided tours of the historic buildings are available by appointment.

Escape from the city and enjoy nature without leaving Southfield at Burgh Historical Park. Spanning 125 acres, this park offers quiet green space, walking trails through the woods, and open areas to picnic and recharge.

Two kettle lakes, Deer Lake and Duck Lake provide fishing spots while a sledding hill gives kids outdoor winter fun after a fresh snowfall. Other park amenities include a nature center, play structures, free summer concerts at the gazebo, and holiday light displays during the Christmas season.

4. Take the Kids to Adventure Park at Canterbury Village

Name and Location: Take the Kids to Adventure Park at Canterbury Village, located at 2359 Joslyn Ct, Lake Orion, MI 48360.

History and Significance: Adventure Park is a family entertainment center located in the historic Canterbury Village. The park features a variety of attractions and activities for all ages.

What to Expect: Visitors can enjoy miniature golf, go-karts, a ropes course, a zip line, and other exciting attractions. The park also features a restaurant and an ice cream shop.

Visitor Information: Adventure Park is open daily from 11:00 am to 8:00 pm. Admission prices vary depending on the attraction. Parking is available on-site.

Fun for all ages awaits at Canterbury Village, an entertainment destination housing Adventure Park. This indoor park features rides, arcade games, laser tag, mini golf, spin zones, soft playgrounds, a cafe, and more.

Popular attractions include the Cupcake Spinner ride, Cosmic Realm laser tag, Fruity Feet climb and play, and an 18-hole glow-in-the-dark mini golf course. With affordable day passes, Adventure Park offers year-round fun out of the harsh Michigan weather. When it’s nice out, enjoy Canterbury Village’s scenic trails, shops, and eateries too.

5. Learn About Local History at the Southfield Public Library

Name and Location: Learn About Local History at the Southfield Public Library, located at 26300 Evergreen Rd, Southfield, MI 48076.

History and Significance: The Southfield Public Library is a community resource that offers a wide range of books, media, and services. The library also has a local history room with exhibits and resources on the history of Southfield and the surrounding area.

What to Expect: Visitors can browse the library’s collection, use the computers and internet access, and attend various programs and events. The local history room features exhibits on topics such as the civil rights movement and the history of local businesses and organizations.

Visitor Information: The Southfield Public Library is open Monday through Thursday from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm, Friday and Saturday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, and Sunday from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Admission is free. Parking is available on-site.

In addition to an extensive book and media collection, the Southfield Public Library houses exhibits highlighting local history. Visitors can view rotating historical displays ranging from Native American artifacts found regionally to photographs showcasing Southfield’s development over the past century.

Of particular note is an intricate scale model recreating how the city looked in 1927. Genealogy services and historical records offer opportunities to dig deeper too. Don’t miss the beautiful hand-painted mural depicting Southfield’s transformation.

6. Stroll the Grounds at Marygrove College

Name and Location: Stroll the Grounds at Marygrove College, located at 8425 W McNichols Rd, Detroit, MI 48221.

History and Significance: Marygrove College is a Catholic liberal arts college founded in 1905. The college is known for its beautiful campus, which features historic buildings and landscaped grounds.

What to Expect: Visitors can take a self-guided tour of the campus and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere. The grounds feature a variety of trees, flowers, and sculptures, as well as a labyrinth for meditation.

Visitor Information: The Marygrove College campus is open daily from dawn to dusk. Admission is free. Parking is available on-site. Visitors should check in at the main office upon arrival.

Although the liberal arts college ceased operations in 2019, the 53-acre Marygrove College campus remains a beautiful place to visit. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Marygrove’s meticulously landscaped grounds centered around a majestic 1920s era administrative building make you feel like you’re on the set of Downton Abbey. Visitors can wander pedestrian walkways, picturesque quads, fountains, and a serene sculpture garden dotted with contemporary artworks among the trees.

7. See Exhibits Focused on African American Culture at the Charles H. Wright Museum

Name and Location: See Exhibits Focused on African American Culture at the Charles H. Wright Museum, located at 315 E Warren Ave, Detroit, MI 48201.

History and Significance: The Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History is a cultural institution that celebrates the contributions and experiences of African Americans. The museum was founded in 1965 and has since become a major center for research, education, and cultural programming.

What to Expect: Visitors can explore a variety of exhibits on topics such as the civil rights movement, the Harlem Renaissance, and contemporary African American art. The museum also features a research library, a theater, and a gift shop.

Visitor Information: The Charles H. Wright Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm and Sunday from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Admission is $8 for adults and $5 for children ages 3-12. Parking is available on-site.

To immerse yourself in the history, culture, and accomplishments of African Americans, head to the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. This museum houses over 35,000 artifacts and archival materials celebrating Black contribution and innovation spanning slavery through the present day.

Interactive, chronological, and topical exhibits convey perspectives often left out of traditional American history. Highlights include an actual 1940s-era railcar demonstrating the discrimination of segregation, additions honoring African American women trailblazers, and rotating displays focused on contemporary Black artists and influencers.

8. Shop ‘Til You Drop at Southfield’s Premier Shopping Destination

Name and Location: Shop ‘Til You Drop at Southfield’s Premier Shopping Destination, Northland Center, located at 21500 Northwestern Hwy, Southfield, MI 48075.

History and Significance: Northland Center is a major shopping mall that has been serving the Southfield community since 1954. The mall features a variety of stores, restaurants, and entertainment options.

What to Expect: Visitors can browse the mall’s many stores, including department stores, specialty shops, and boutiques. The mall also features a food court, a movie theater, and a children’s play area.

Visitor Information: Northland Center is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm and Sunday from 11:00 am to 6:00 pm. Parking is available on-site.

Calling all shopaholics! Southfield is home to several premier shopping destinations offering retail therapy for days. The sprawling 318,000 square foot Twelve Oaks Mall houses over 180 stores ranging from exclusive luxury brands to popular chains and unique boutiques.

Just down the street, another 200+ stores await inside the open-air Market Center shopping plaza. From home goods to fashion, shoes to accessories, makeup to toys, these two adjacent shopping meccas have it all. Take a break in the center courtyard or one of a dozen cozy cafes and bistros when your feet need a rest.

9.Shelter Dogs and Cats at Michigan Humane

Name and Location: Shelter Dogs and Cats at Michigan Humane, located at 30300 Telegraph Rd, Suite 220, Bingham Farms, MI 48025.

History and Significance: Michigan Humane is a non-profit animal welfare organization that has been serving the Detroit area since 1877. The organization operates several adoption centers and clinics throughout the region.

What to Expect: Visitors can meet and adopt a variety of dogs, cats, and other animals in need of loving homes. The adoption center features spacious kennels and play areas for the animals.

Visitor Information: The Michigan Humane adoption center is open Monday through Saturday from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm. Adoption fees vary depending on the animal. Parking is available on-site.

For animal lovers visiting Southfield, the Michigan Humane Society offers the perfect opportunity to give back by volunteering with rescue pets. As an open admission shelter, they take in over 20,000 stray, abandoned and relinquished animals in need each year.

Spending just an hour or two walking dogs, playing with cats, cleaning cages or socializing the furry friends awaiting adoption makes a tangible difference. The positive impact volunteers have on an animal’s welfare cannot be overstated. Who knows…you might even find a new four-legged friend to take home!

10. Practice Your Swing at the Golden Fox Golf Course

Name and Location: Practice Your Swing at the Golden Fox Golf Course, located at 8768 N Territorial Rd, Plymouth, MI 48170.

History and Significance: The Golden Fox Golf Course is a prestigious 18-hole course designed by Arthur Hills. The course has been voted one of the best in Michigan and has hosted several major tournaments.

What to Expect: Visitors can enjoy a challenging round of golf on the beautifully landscaped course. The course features a variety of holes, from wide open fairways to tight doglegs, as well as water hazards and sand traps.

Visitor Information: The Golden Fox Golf Course is open daily from dawn to dusk. Tee times can be booked online or by phone. Green fees vary depending on the day and time. Rental equipment and a pro shop are available on-site.

Boasting two championship golf courses, Golden Fox in Southfield offers scenic play perfect for working on your swing. Their Silver Course offers traditional parkland style golf with undulating fairways and large greens.

Alternatively, the Golden Fox Course provides a links-style layout reminiscent of classic Scottish courses with pot bunkers, fescue grasses and wide open landing areas leading up to elevated greens. With challenging play for all skill levels, discounted twilight rates, a clubhouse grill, and fully-stocked pro shop, Golden Fox has everything needed for an amazing day on the green.

11. Test Your Nerves at Adrenaline Park

Name and Location: Test Your Nerves at Adrenaline Park, located at 3300 Enterprise Dr, Allen Park, MI 48101.

History and Significance: Adrenaline Park is an indoor adventure park that offers a variety of thrilling attractions and activities. The park is a popular destination for families, friends, and corporate groups.

What to Expect: Visitors can challenge themselves on the park’s high ropes course, zip lines, and rock climbing walls. The park also features a ninja warrior course, a trampoline park, and a virtual reality experience.

Visitor Information: Adrenaline Park is open Monday through Thursday from 2:00 pm to 9:00 pm, Friday from 2:00 pm to 11:00 pm, Saturday from 10:00 am to 11:00 pm, and Sunday from 12:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Admission prices vary depending on the attraction. Parking is available on-site.

From ninja courses to warped walls, Adrenaline Park’s 20,000 square foot indoor parkour and ninja training facility provides unique recreation. Kids ages 4 to 17 years old can climb, swing, leap, and navigate through obstacles designing to challenge both physical ability and mental grit.

Structured classes teach parkour techniques while open play hours offer timed challenges on various courses to test skills. From beginner elements just a few feet off the ground to advanced aerial obstacles requiring a safety harness, they’ve got options suitable for everyone. Expect sore muscles ahead!

12. Sip Local Wine at the Michigan By The Bottle Tasting Room

Name and Location: Sip Local Wine at the Michigan By The Bottle Tasting Room, located at 45645 Hayes Rd, Shelby Township, MI 48315.

History and Significance: Michigan By The Bottle is a partnership of several Michigan wineries that operates tasting rooms throughout the state. The Shelby Township location features wines from several local wineries.

What to Expect: Visitors can sample a variety of Michigan wines in a relaxed and inviting atmosphere. The tasting room features a bar area as well as outdoor seating. Light snacks and small plates are also available.

Visitor Information: The Michigan By The Bottle Tasting Room is open Monday through Thursday from 12:00 pm to 9:00 pm, Friday and Saturday from 12:00 pm to 11:00 pm, and Sunday from 12:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Tasting fees vary depending on the wines selected. Parking is available on-site.

Support the local Michigan wine industry by stopping into Michigan By The Bottle’s tasting room in the heart of downtown Southfield. Boasting the state’s largest selection of Michigan-made wine, cider, and mead, their menu features over 250 bottles produced by over 35 wineries across Michigan.

Their helpful staff leads customers through wine flights tailored to individual preferences then provides education on the background of each. Beyond tastings, Michigan By The Bottle also hosts fun events like paint nights, trivia and live music while food trucks outside their patio serve snacks perfect for pairing.

Conclusion

From historical sites like Thomas Edison’s estate to unique recreation like the indoor Adventure Park, Southfield offers outstanding attractions for visitors of all interests. Families will love kid-friendly places like Burgh Park while couples can challenge themselves navigatively adrenaline-pumping parkour courses.

Opportunities to give back present themselves through volunteering at animal shelters whereas shoppers find paradise in Southfield’s endless retail stores. For nature and outdoor enthusiasts, activities from golf to wine tastings connect visitors with Michigan’s natural beauty. With such diversity among the 12 activities covered, it’s easy to keep busy when exploring all this vibrant Detroit suburb has to offer.

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