Nature gives us so much, sometimes it’s good to give back. Since 1970, that’s been the spirit behind For-Mar Nature Preserve and Arboretum. With 383 acres of carefully preserved Michigan flora and fauna and one of the state’s finest collections of rare trees, For-Mar is where Michigan goes to learn about — and from — the best of the world around us. For-Mar Nature Preserve and Arboretum, because some things are worth preserving. Turns out, they’re just around the corner. At your Genesee County Parks.
2142 N. Genesee Road, Burton, MI 48509–1209
Click here for driving directions.
Forbes and Martha Merkley Visitor Center
The Visitor’s Center is open Wednesday - Sunday, 8:00 am - 5:00 pm The grounds are open Wednesday - Sunday from 8:00 am—sunset. The grounds and building are closed on Monday and Tuesday. The Visitor’s Center will be open on December 24 and December 31, but will be closed on December 25 and January 1. The grounds will remain open Wednesday - Sunday, even on holidays.
For-Mar is a 383-acre nature preserve and arboretum with 7 miles of hiking trails. Jogging and biking are permitted on the gravel service drive only. Pets are not allowed.
For-Mar Nature Preserve & Arboretum-Cross Country Skiing is permitted under a pilot program suspending the rule on conditions and letting users determine when conditions are appropriate. Policy will be reviewed annually. Park hours are 8 a.m. to dusk for cross-country skiing.
For-Mar also has a designated picnic area. A trail signage project was completed in 2008.
For-Mar's gift shop. the Nature Nook, is open during regular Nature Center hours. Items like t-shirts, plants, animal guidebooks, children's activity books, educational toys, and souvenirs are sold in the gift shop..
Private hikes for non-profit groups are $1.50 per person. Classroom field trips are $1.50 per person. In-school programs are $3.00 per student and require a $50.00 minimum, plus mileage.
There is a non-refundable cancellation fee of $10.00. Payment is due the day of the program. Public programs start at $3.00 per person; fees vary for workshops and specialty programs. Please call 810.789.8567 or 810.736.7100 for hours and programs.
Programs usually range from $5–$10 per person and pre-registration may be required. For program reservations, call 810.736.7100, ext. 6. Workshops usually range from $10 and up. Space is limited and pre-registration is required. For workshop reservations, call 810.736.7100, ext. 6.
For wedding inquiries, call 810.789.8568.
A walk-through is required prior to making wedding reservations. If you would like to download our wedding brochure, click here.
Gardens/Grounds Facility Fee:
Weekday Price - (for weddings up to 50 people)
$125; $125 security deposit required
Weekday Price - (for weddings between 50 and 200 people)
$250; $250 security deposit required
Weekend Price - (for weddings up to 50 people)
$200; $200 security deposit required
Weekend Price - *for weddings between 50 and 200 people)
$400; $400 security deposit required
*Increased costs are to cover expenses accrued by the GCP Ranger Division during these events.
Additional fee for use of tent during event
$100; $100 security deposit required
This fee allows the renter an additional 2 hours of time at the Gardens for tent set-up / break-down.
Visitor Center Auditorium Fee:
$100 not-for-profit organization; $100 deposit required
$150 for-profit organization $150 deposit required.
Refund Policy for Programs Requiring Pre-Registration and Facility Rentals;
50% refund 72 hours prior to the event. No refund after 72 hours.
Rentals are only available during regular business hours, Wednesday-Sunday 8am - 5pm.
Weddings can be booked Wednesday - Sunday and can be held from 8am-sunset, May 1 through October 31.
No weddings over 200 people will be permitted at For-Mar.
For-Mar On the Road
In-County Presentations: $125
In-County Workshops: $125 + the cost of supplies
Out-County Presentations: $155
Out-County Workshops: $155 + the cost of supplies
There is a non-refundable cancellation fee of $10.00. Payment is due the day of the program.
Non-profit Group Pricing Schedule (schools, preschools, and special needs audiences):
There is a $50 minimum charge, plus mileage.
-One group, 1-33 participants - $50, plus mileage
-Two groups at the same location on the same day (33-66 participants) - $85, plus mileage
-Three groups at the same location on the same day (67-99 participants) - $110, plus mileage
-Four groups at the same location on the same day (100 - 134 participants) - $120 plus mileage
There is a non-refundable cancellation fee of $10.00. payment is due the day of the program.
We prefer to do single-group sized presentations as the interactive programs are best with no more than 33 participants. There is a 66 person maximum per program. For more For-Mar On the Road information, click here.
Adopt-a-Garden: Various gardens at For-Mar as well as various other County Parks are available for adoption. Spring and fall clean-ups are essential along with bi-weekly visits for routine maintenance. Training will be provided. Call 810-789-8567 for information.
Other opportunities: Volunteers are needed for a variety of tasks, including but not limited to, Bluebird counts, invasive plant removal, Visitor's Center greeter, etc. Call 810-789-8567 or 810-789-8568 for information.
Internships: Unpaid internships are available. Contact the Head Naturalist or Horticulturist for information.