Shiawassee County Local Attractions
If you are looking for new attractions or for places to tour, Shiawassee County has many places to offer! Centrally located in the heart of Michigan, traveling here is convenient and you’ll be amazed at all there is to do. We are proud to be home to the world famous Steam Engine Pere Marquette 1225, known all around the world as the real “Polar Express.” Other popular attractions include a Historic Village, Train Depot, Castle, Art Center, a Museum with the largest sleigh and carriage collection in the midwest, a historic Performing Arts Theater, historic homes and barns, unique downtowns and miles and miles of biking and walking trails. To learn more about the fantastic finds of Shiawassee County contact the Convention and Visitors Bureau at 989-723-1199. All of our group tour services are complimentary!
206 Curwood Castle Drive, Owosso
Located next to the historic Curwood Castle overlooking the Shiawassee River, the Shiawassee Arts Center serves as a showcase for the work of area, statewide and national artists. It has nine galleries with featured exhibits, a specialty gift shop and art classes for children and adults. Be sure to visit the newly renovated Cottonwood Terrace and River Gallery. The Arts Center is available for meetings, private receptions and parties. Open Tuesday-Sunday 1-5pm. No admission fee, handicap accessible.
405 S. Washington Street, Owosso
The SRI’s mission is to preserve the knowledge, skills and technology involved with the maintenance and operation of steam locomotives and to educate the public about the enormous impact that these machines had in economic development of Owosso, Michigan and the Great Lakes Region. The institute is home to the majestic Pere Marquette 1225, the largest operating steam locomotive of its kind. The 1225 embodies the characteristics of the last and most powerful steam locomotives. The Steam Railroading Institute offers weekend excursions throughout the summer and several all day excursions throughout the year. The most popular of all excursions is the “North Pole Express,” available during November and December.
200 Railroad Street, P.O. Box 106, Durand
The Durand Union Station recaptures the golden years of railroading. The Michigan Railroad History Museum features photos, artifacts, displays and articles of Durand’s rich railroad history. See displays from the Ann Arbor History Society and the Grand Trunk Western Historical Society. For a firsthand look at railroading of yesterday, Durand Union Station is an interesting educational place to visit. The Depot has also gained prominence as one of the most photographed train stations in America. You may visit Durand Union Station on Tuesday-Thursday & Sunday 1-5pm, Friday & Saturday 10am-5pm.
Curwood Castle Park 226 Curwood Castle Drive, Owosso
James Oliver Curwood – Writer, Conservationist, Visionary, Iconoclast, Imaginer and Movie Pioneer – created Curwood Castle to serve as his writing and conservation studio. Curwood, one of America’s foremost authors of adventure novels and an early advocate of environmental conservation, skillfully created a replica of a French Norman chateau on the banks of his beloved Shiawassee River. At least 200 motion pictures have been based on or directly inspired by his novels and short stories. Built between 1922 and 1923, Curwood Castle was used by Curwood until his death in 1927.
The Curwood Castle is open to the public March to mid-April, Thursday thru Sunday, 1 to 5 pm; and mid-April Tuesday thru Sunday to December, 1-5 pm. Curwood Castle is part of The Curwood Collection, managed by the Owosso Historical Commission. As well as the Curwood Castle, The Curwood Collection includes the Amos Gould House, the Comstock Pioneer Cabin, the Woodard Paymaster Building, the Ivan Conger Archive Room and the Curwood Collection Archives. The entire Curwood Collection is open to the public during The Curwood Festival – the first weekend in June, and during The Owosso Historic Home Tour – the third weekend in September. Curwood Castle, along with the rest of The Curwood Collection, is available for group tours and student field trips. For more information call 989-725-0597, email robert.doran@ ci.owosso.mi.us or visit www.owossohistory.org.
Located on Governor Parsons Lane, inside Hugh McCurdy Park, Corunna
989-743-3650 or 989-743-4995
Imagine being able to go back in time to see what it was like 100 years ago. New elements being added at every opportunity, the replicated village features restored historical buildings of the golden days of yesteryear during life before electricity, running water, automobiles and the modern conveniences of today’s busy life. Open the afternoon of July 4th, the first two weekends in December and by appointment.
2635 N. M-52, Owosso
The DeVries Historic Carriage and Sleigh Museum boasts one of the finest collections of carriages, buggies, surreys, sleighs and cutters in the Midwest. The collection consists of over 27 vehicles. Owosso’s manufacturing past is well represented by buggies and sleighs built in the early 1900s by the Owosso Carriage & Sleigh Company. Entrance to the museum is by appointment only. To learn more about special events and educational opportunities, visit their website.
114 E. Main Street, Owosso
The Owosso Community Players is the premiere performing arts group in Shiawassee County, providing entertaining live theatre for more than 60 years. The Owosso Community Players perform in the newly renovated, state-of-the-art and LEED certified Lebowsky Center, which was nearly lost in 2007 to a devastating fire. Visit our website to learn more about auditions, supporting and enjoying the Owosso Community Players.
205 Airport Drive, Owosso
The Owosso Community Airport began in 1929 as a single grass strip with one hanger. Today it has three landing strips surrounded by spacious hangers and a community that has grown up around it. Business people fly in, small jets and helicopters land and flying schools train future pilots. Bring the family out to watch planes come and go anytime. The airport is also home to Crosswinds Café and Skydive Owosso. Join them on Saturday September 17th for the 1st Annual Fly In. The public is always welcome.
Shiawassee County boasts wonderful Farmers Markets that are a treat for the whole family. From May through October, markets operate in Bennington (Monday), Durand (Wednesday), Vernon (Thursday), Owosso (Saturday), DeVries Nature Conservancy (Wednesday) and Laingsburg (Wednesday afternoon). Hours of operation vary, see calendar of events page for details.
127 East First Street, Perry
This home museum depicts the history of Perry, Morrice and Shaftsburg area. Be sure to visit the exhibit of Mastodon bones that were found in Perry Township back in 2001. Open Saturday and Sunday 1-5pm, July-December
When you’re on the hunt for gifts, apparel, or even pieces of art, Shiawassee County possesses the nostalgia of historic downtowns and the convenience of national chain stores. When downtown, enjoy parking along the streets, and the friendly faces and helpful attitudes of storekeepers. You will be amazed at the variety of goods to be discovered within walking distance. Displays are well stocked with items that range from old-fashioned to modern, from bargain basement to upscale chic.
1997 N. M-52, Owosso
This museum offers collections of written historical material and artifacts relating to the history of the Shiawassee County area. Open every Saturday and Sunday afternoon from mid-May through mid-September. Organizations, clubs, church groups, or classrooms can schedule a tour of the Museum by contacting Charles Wascher at 989-723-2371.