The 2019 Silent Auction features a variety of Michigan experiences to give as gifts or to treat yourself or your family. You’ll find fun and exciting ways to sample the state’s natural and cultural wonders on a day trip, a weekend getaway or as part of a longer vacation.  Read carefully—we’ve tucked in a few private guided hikes to both lesser known and well-loved MNA sanctuaries in a couple of packages. So if you seek a pleasant peninsula in the coming year, look no further! 

The proceeds from this auction will benefit MNA’s Environmental Education Fund. This fund provides opportunities for students and families in Michigan to explore nature, including our field trip grant program for teachers. Thank you for helping us educate the next generation of conservation leaders, and thank you to all our auction item donors for their generous contributions! A special thanks to the MNA Stewards who have generously donated their time to serve as sanctuary guides.

View the online catalog here or read the item descriptions below:


Upper Peninsula Escapes

Keweenaw Adventure

Celebrate the Keweenaw with a spectacular land and water adventure. (Tour dates according to 2020 vendor and Steward schedules, winning bidder will arrange dates and times.)

  • Lake Superior Sea Kayak tour with Keweenaw Adventure Company
  • Guided tour of a Keweenaw Peninsula Nature Sanctuary of your choice
  • Two night stay in a one-bedroom cabin at the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge

Donated by: Keweenaw Adventure Company, Keweenaw Mountain Lodge, and Nancy and Bill Leonard

Marquette – Munising Explorer

Enjoy one of the most spectacular lakeside views in the state, and get up close and personal with Great Lakes shipwrecks.  (Holiday Inn Express gift certificate can be applied to an overnight stay. Winning bidder will arrange dates and times with vendors.)

  • Gift certificate to Holiday Inn Express Lakeview, Munising
  • Two adult tickets on a Glass Bottom Shipwreck Tour

Donated by: Glass Bottom Shipwreck Tour, Holiday Inn Express Munising-Lakeview

Guided Photo Adventure

Learn photographic basics, or improve your techniques on a guided mini-photo adventure in northern Chippewa County, exploring rich coastlines, marshes, and one of the oldest life-saving stations on the Lake Superior shoreline. (Winning bidder responsible for own transporation, and will arrange dates with Lauren)

  • One-day/night guided photo adventure with instruction
  • Private tour and overnight stay at Vermilion Point Lifesaving Station

Donated by: Little Traverse Conservancy, Ben Musielak, and Lauren Ross

Northern Michigan Splendor

Mackinac Escape

Take the ferry to Mackinac Island and enjoy a carriage ride for two. (Ferry ride subject to ferry schedule.)

  • Gift certificate for two round trip tickets on any scheduled Star Line Mackinac Island Ferry Departure from Mackinaw City or St. Ignace
  • Gift certificate for 1hr. 45 min. narrated, scenic and historic carriage tour for two

Donated by: Mackinac Island Carriage Tours, Star Line Ferry

Week-Long Getaway in Northern Michigan

This is it—one week in a 3-bedroom cottage on Mullet Lake in Northern Michigan! Join Bois Blanc Nature Sanctuary Steward Mike White for a guided tour of this secluded sanctuary which protects habitat for the Hine’s emerald dragonfly! (Winning bidder will make arrangements with cottage owner and nature sanctuary Steward, ferry ride subject to ferry schedule.)

  • Weeklong stay in a 3-bedroom cottage on Mullet Lake
  • Two round-trip tickets on the Bois Blanc Island Ferry
  • Guided tour of MNA’s Bois Blanc Nature Sanctuary

Donated by: Ruth Vail, Plaunt Transportation, and Mike White

Mid-Michigan Magic

Fun with Fungi

Seek out notable mushrooms of the season on an educational foray with MNA Steward Sister Marie Kopin, for up to four people. (A central Michigan location and other details of the excursion will be arranged directly with Sister Marie—you may visit an MNA sanctuary depending on conditions) 

Educational mushroom tour with North American Mycological Association award winner, Sister Marie Kopin

Donated by: Sister Marie Kopin

Newaygo Praire Guided Hike

Join Sarah Pregitzer and Randy Butters, MNA Newaygo area Stewards and 2018 Volunteers of the Year, on a guided hike through Coolbough Natural Areas. (Winning bidder will arrange sanctuary visit with Stewards)

  • Guided walk and visit to Newaygo area nature sanctuaries

Donated by: Sarah Pregitzer and Randy Butters

Midland Meander

There is much to see and do in Midland! Visit a botanical garden, then experience an MNA Nature Sanctuary with a Sanctuary Steward (Gardens subject to regular hours, winning bidder will make arrangements directly with sanctuary Steward.)

  • Gift certificate for two adults and two children for one day at Dow Gardens and Whiting Forest
  • Guided tour of Bullock Creek Nature Sanctuary with Steward Larry Brown

Donated by: Dow Gardens and Whiting Forest, and Larry Brown

Bird Banding at Burke Lake Station near Lansing

Get a unique, hands-on science experience with this package, then  after a full day of learning, fill up on a gourmet meal at The State Room! (Winning bidder will arrange tour directly with Burke Lake Banding Station.)

  • Four passes to Impression 5 Science Center
  • General Merchandise Gift Card for use at Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center Spartan Spirit Shop or State Room Restaurant
  • Burke Lake Banding Station research experience for six

Donated by: Burke Lake Bird Banding Station, Impression 5 Science Center, Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center

Southwest Michigan Wanders

Allegan County Adventure
Join Wade Memorial Nature Sanctuary Stewards for a guided tour at this Saugatuck gem, which sits atop a high bluff overlooking wetlands that lead to the shore of Silver Lake. Then enjoy the royal treatment at Fenn Valley Vineyards. (Winning bidder will arrange sanctuary visit directly with Stewards)

  • Guided tour of Wade Memorial Nature Sanctuary
  • Gift certificate for private wine tasting for up to 10 people at Fenn Valley Vineyard

Donated by: Fenn Valley Vineyards, Robb Johnston, and MNA Stewards

Kalamazoo Fun

Explore Kalamazoo’s natural features in style with this package which includes a unique tourof the W.K. Kellogg Bird Sanctuary with MNA Trustee and Sanctuary employee Kara Haas.

  • Guided tour of W.K. Kellogg Bird Sanctuary for four
  • 50/50/50 Gift Certificate to the Henderson Castle
  • Two additional passes to the W.K. Kellogg Bird Sanctuary
  • Erbelli’s Gourmet Pizzeria gift card
  • Guided prairie fen sanctuary tour with MNA Steward Dan Burton

(The Henderson Castle B&B voucher can be applied to an overnight stay, spa services, or restaurant; winning bidder will arrange tour of the Bird Sanctuary with Kara Haas.)

Donated by:  Erbelli's Gourmet Pizzeria, Henderson Castle Bed and Breakfast, Kara Haas/Kellogg Bird Sanctuary, and Dan Burton


Southeast Michigan Expeditions

Family Fun Educational Adventure Package

Experience Southeast Michigan like never before with this scientific experience package which includes:

  • Four admission tickets to the Crankbrook Institute of Science
  • Family 4-pack admission to the DNR Outdoor Adventure Center
  • Family Fun Passbook to Oakland County Parks
  • Admission to the SeaLife Michigan Aquarium

Donated by: DNR Outdoor Adventure Center, Oakland County Parks, Sea Life Aquarium, and Cranbrook Institute of Science

Prairie Restoration Lab Tour

Gain first-hand knowledge on how research conducted at MNA Nature Sanctuaries is informing the science of prairie restoration. (Winning bidder will make arrangements with Dr. Emily Grman. Note—wear closed toe shoes and long pants in the lab.)

  • Playmakers Gift Card
  • Guided tour for four of the lab and greenhouse of Dr. Emily Grman

Donated by: Emily Grman, and Playmakers


Additional Offerings

Michigan Nature-Inspired Tempered Glass Cutting Board

Complete your kitchen collection with this one-of-a-kind glass cutting board, inspired by and made in Michigan.

Donated by: Thomas Reverman/5th Season MI

NPR Michigan Radio Tote Bag

Show your love for public radio with this awesome goodie-bag from NPR & Michigan Radio.

  • Public Radio Nerd T-Shirt
  • NPR Socks
  • Michigan Radio Winter Hat
  • Public Radio Nerd mug & glass water bottle
  • Michigan Radio notepads

Donated by: Michigan Radio

Set of Autographed books by Author Dave Dempsey

Cozy up next to the fire this winter with what are sure to become your new favorite book(s)! Award-wining author Dave Dempsey has helped shape conservation and Great Lakes policy for 30 years. 

  • The Heart of the Lakes
  • Ruin & Recovery: Michigan’s Rise as a Conservation Leader
  • The Waters of Michigan

Donated by: Dave Dempsey

Set of Autographed Children’s Books

Introduce your children to conservation with these illustrated children’s books by author and MNA Regional Stewardship Organizer, Robb Johnston.

  • Craves
  • Lelani and the Plastic Kingdon
  • The Woodcutters and the Most Beautiful Tree

Donated by: Robb Johnston

Set of ‘Under the Radar’ Books

Plan your next great Michigan adventure, or discover a hidden Michigan gem with this set of books based on the PBS television series:

  • Under the Radar: The First 50
  • Under the Radar: The Next 50

Donated by: Under the Radar Michigan