Friends General Conference

Together we nurture the spiritual vitality of Friends

2018 Field Trips

Toledo Skyline (photo: Visit Toledo)
Swan Creek MetroPark in Toledo (photo: Visit Toledo)
Maumee Bay State Park (photo: Gathering staff)

Once you are at the Gathering, sign up for pre-planned off-campus trips offered Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday afternoons. Costs vary. You can also design your own trip with information provided at the Local Arrangements table.

Toledo and the surrounding area provide multiple venues for discovery. Off-campus experiences will provide opportunities to perceive the Power of Truth as you travel the waterways of the Maumee River and Lake Erie; explore African American history and current reality in Detroit; explore life as lived by Native Americans and white pioneers in the Northwest Territories; enjoy the natural environment in the extensive Metropark system; ride along the six-mile University/Parks trail; tour an automotive plant designed for efficiency and sustainability; and more!

Off-Campus Field Trips

Monday 7/2 – Islamic Center of Greater Toledo

Members from 23 nationalities attend the Islamic Center of Greater Toledo, but its main claim to fame is its equal and vibrant representation of women and the democratic and constitutional processes that the Center diligently follows. The Islamic Center of Greater Toledo is a birth-to-death resource; it has a full-time Islamic School on its premises and it provides a variety of religious, educational and cultural activities for its members and for the greater Toledo community. 

Carpool: 16.6 miles (22 min.)  Cost: Share of gas

Monday 7/2 – Seven Eagles

Explore the Seven Eagles EARTH Center. This unique facility offers historical, ecological, cultural, and arts experiences focusing on the 1600-1850 time period. Step back in time as historical re-enactors take you on a journey to an historic time. Some of Seven Eagles' features are: Cricket Frog Pond, a Native American Longhouse, a circa 1800 Log House Settlement, a blacksmith shop, and a trading post. 

Carpool: 26.3 miles (34 min.)  Cost: Share of gas plus $4.25

Tuesday 7/3 – Charles H. Wright African American Museum and tour of Detroit outside art and revitalization projects

The Wright Museum’s vision is to open minds and change lives through the exploration and celebration of African American history and culture.  Its vision is of a world in which the adversity and achievement of African American history inspire everyone toward great understanding, acceptance and unity.  The museum houses over 35,000 artifacts and archival materials and is home to the Blanche Coggin Underground Railroad Collection; Harriet Tubman Museum Collection; Coleman A. Young Collection; and the Sheffield Collection, a repository of documents of the labor movement in Detroit.

Bus: 69.7 miles (1 hr. 12 min.)  Cost:  Bus fare (TBD) plus $8 for adults, $4 children, $5 seniors

Tuesday 7/3 – Boat ride to the Harbor Light

The Toledo Lighthouse is located about five miles off shore north of Maumee Bay State Park. The lighthouse marks the Toledo shipping channel where the waters of Lake Erie meet the shallow waters of Maumee Bay.  The Romanesque design lighthouse was completed May 23, 1904, and is architecturally unique with buff brick and a rolled edge steel roof. The lighthouse is 4000 sq. ft. and stands 64' high. Armor was added to three sides of the base of the lighthouse in 1989 when the lighthouse was secured by the Army Corps of Engineers.  There are 76 steps to the top of the lighthouse - three stories in the homelike part and three stories in the tower.  Tours are in small groups of 6 leaving from the marina at Maumee Bay State Park.  The tour and boat trip are about one hour.  

Carpool: 17.9 miles (29 min.).  Cost:  Share of gas plus $30 for boat trip only, $40 for boat trip and access to light house

Thursday 7/4 – Canal Boat on Maumee

Return to the 1840’s and travel through a working lock and visit a working mill.  Step back in time at the Canal Experience and get a taste of life on the Miami and Erie Canal in 1876. Providence Metropark is located in what was once the canal town of Providence, Ohio. Today, the Metropark has one of the greatest concentrations of canal era features in the country, including: a reproduction of a mule-drawn canal boat; a working water-powered saw and gristmill; more than a mile of the original Miami and Erie Canal and towpath; one of the last functioning 19th century limestone locks; Scenic Providence Dam, constructed across the Maumee River to maintain water levels in the canal; characters in period attire welcoming visitors to a time gone by.

Carpool:  24.4 miles (30 min.)  Cost: Share of gas plus $7 for adults, $4 for children, $6 for seniors

Thursday 7/5 – Toledo Museum of Art

Since its founding in 1901, the Toledo Museum of Art has earned a global reputation for the quality of its collection, its innovative and extensive education programs, and its architecturally significant campus. More than 30,000 works of art represent American and European painting, the history of art in glass, ancient Greek, Roman, and Egyptian works, Asian and African art, medieval art, sculpture, decorative arts, graphic arts, and modern and contemporary art.  A tour will be led by two docents.

Carpool: 3.2 miles (8 min.)  Cost:  Share of gas plus $4

Friday 7/6 – Imagination Station

Imagination Station, Toledo’s Science Center, is dedicated to making science, technology, engineering and mathematics fun and accessible. There are hundreds of interactive, hands-on exhibits that are fun and educational for the entire family.

Carpool: 4.4 miles (14 min.)  Cost:  Share of gas plus $11 for adults, $9 for children, $10 for seniors

Friday 7/6 – National Museum of the Great Lakes

The Great Lakes represent thousands of years of history and have dramatically impacted the social, economic and political history of North America.  The Museum of the Great Lakes tells the incredible story of our Great Lakes through over 300 genuine artifacts, a number of powerful audiovisual and 40 hands-on interactive exhibits including the Col. James M. Schoonmaker Museum Ship.  The tales told span hundreds of years, from the fur traders in the 1600s, to the Underground Railroad operators in the 1800s, to the rum runners in the 1900s, and to the sailors on the thousand-footers sailing today. The theme of the Great Lakes as a Powerful Force runs through all of these stories.

Carpool: 5.5 miles (17 min.)  Cost:  Share of gas plus $11 for adults, $8 for children, $10 for seniors (add $4 to include Schoonmaker Museum Ship)

Create Your Own Field Trip

Opportunities to design your own experiences in and around Toledo

Following are suggestions for places to explore on your own during the Gathering. You can also review the list of field trips and include those places in your self-designed trips.

(Locations marked with * are are recommended as particularly family-friendly)

In addition, you may want to consider vacation opportunities before and after the Gathering. From Shipshewana/Amish country to the west; to Sleeping Bear Dunes or the Elgin Settlement of former slaves in Buxton, Ontario, up north; to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame or Harbor Light Festival in the east; to the Neil Armstrong or Underground Railroad museum going south; to Cedar Point, Kelly’s Island and Put-Bay on the coast and in Lake Erie, there are wonderful possibilities awaiting you. 

Learn more about places to visit in the region

The Local Arrangements table will contain information on all listed opportunities for you to peruse during registration time on Sunday, from 7:30 am to 8:30 am Monday through Friday and afternoon hours following lunch on Monday through Thursday.  Field trip sign-up will take place at the adjoining table.