Events

Complete list of 2017 events

World War II Letters Open House
Sunday, November 12, 2017 1-4 p.m., Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
In 1942, Mr. Glenn Husted, Whitfield School Principal, began writing to his former students who were serving in World War II around the world. As the servicemen and women wrote back to him, he shared their stories. He saved each letter. All but eight of the original letters were returned to the families. The Open House features these letters and their stories. Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

Nutcrackers Open House
Sunday, December 10, 2017 1-4 p.m., Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
See a selection of nutcracker-themed music boxes and snowglobes. Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

Local History of Curling Open House
Sunday, January 14, 2018 1-4 p.m., Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Did you know that the first U.S. location of the Winter sport of curling was started by the Scottish settlers on Orchard Lake in 1830? Learn about the local history of curling. Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

Annual Meeting & Pontiac Asylum Presentation
Saturday, January 27, 2018 10 am-noon, Orchard Lake Schools, 3535 Commerce Rd., Dining Hall, Bldg. 15
Annual meeting. Bruce Annett presents Pontiac Asylum, discussing how in 1878 one of the nation’s foremost hospitals served patients with mental illness, most recently known as the Clinton Valley Center; was a city within a city, imbued with the optimism and exuberance of an America celebrating its centennial. It is the story of how enterprise, stewardship, and innovation created 19th century Oakland County’s first non-agricultural “economic engine.” $15 brunch ticket donation. Reservations by January 24 at gwbhs.org, rsvp@gwbhs.org, or 248.518.0871. No annual meeting charge.

Vintage Valentines Open House
Sunday, February 11, 2018 1-4 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Valentine cards reflect the times, through popular themes, poetry, humor, art and cultural values. Come and see a collection of 1930’s Valentines and experience nearly 100-year-old love stories.  Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

Tuskegee Airmen: Flying for Freedom
Wednesday, February 28, 2018 7 pm, West Bloomfield Library Main Meeting Room, 4600 Walnut Lake Road
Macon-Thomas-West Bloomfield Chapter of Tuskegee Airmen, Inc.’s President, Maj. William (Bill) Burnett, (Ret), will discuss the personal stories and fading memories of some of the remaining Tuskegee Airmen – African American pilots, mechanics, and servicemen who served valiantly in World War II – only to return home to a beloved country that yet refused to treat them as equals. Clips from “Flying For Freedom: Untold Stories of the Tuskegee Airmen” will be shown.Sponsored with West Bloomfield Township Library. No charge.

Volunteer Opportunities Meeting
Saturday, March 3, 2018 10 am, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Are you looking for flexible, interesting volunteer opportunities? Come learn our needs — from one-time to long-term commitments. No charge.

West Bloomfield Tornado Open House
Sunday, March 11, 2018 1-4 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Learn about the F4 tornado that damaged dozens of West Bloomfield homes and businesses on March 20, 1976. Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

From Hastings to Home: An Introduction to Detroit’s Early Jewish History
Sunday, March 25, 2018 2 pm, West Bloomfield Library Main Meeting Room, 4600 Walnut Lake Road
The presentation begins in the 1760s with the arrival of the first Jewish settlers in Detroit and follows the movement of the community, up to the 1950s.  Using slides and film, the narration includes explorations of the obstacles and opportunities the Jewish community faced and mounted, why they came to the area and where they settled. Sponsored with West Bloomfield Township Library. No charge.

Military Arms Open House
Sunday, April 8, 2018 1-4 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

Spring Nature Walk
Sunday, April 22, 2018 2-3 pm, Orchard Lake Nature Sanctuary, 4700 Pontiac Trail
Join Naturalist Carol Fink for a guided tour. Walk through rolling terrain and explore the breathtaking spring flowers. Sponsored with Orchard Lake Nature Sanctuary. No charge.

Apple Island Research Update
Wednesday, April 25, 2018 7 pm, West Bloomfield Library Main Meeting Room, 4600 Walnut Lake Road
Apple Island researchers Dr. David Brose and Mark Hoock, PhD. candidate, will share their findings on island use by early Native American and 20th century summer vacationers, respectively. Sponsored with West Bloomfield Township Library. No charge.

Guided Group Tour Visit at Chaldean Cultural Center
Wednesday, May 9, 2018 7 pm, Chaldean Cultural Center, 5600 Walnut Lake Road
Come take a guided group tour and visit the Chaldean Museum, which is part of the Chaldean Cultural Center. Experience 5000 years of Chaldean history, including 5 galleries, exhibits, artifacts, immersive environments, and interactives to help tell the Chaldean story. No charge; donations will be accepted.

Early Irons Open House
Sunday, May 13, 2018 1-4 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Roberta Cassell shares her collection of over 50 old and unusual pressing irons, with exhibits. Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

Join the Memorial Day Parade(s)
Monday, May 28, 2018 9 am-noon
Walk, bike or drive your vintage car in the Monday Memorial Day parades! To participate contact us at: contact@gwbhs.org or 248.757.2451.

Apple Island Docent Training
Wednesday, June 6, 2018 7 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Would you like to lead a tour on Apple Island or guide a 2nd grade class through the Orchard Lake Museum? Come see what it’s all about. RSVP by Tuesday, June 5 to Gina 248.622.7570. No charge.

Apple Island Tours
Saturday, June 9 & Sunday, June 10, 2018 10 am-3:30 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Self-paced guided tours of Apple Island. First come, first served. No reservations. 3:30 p.m. is last departure. $20 adult ticket donation, $10 child 5-12 years ticket donation (no kids under 5). $5 GWBHS and Time Travelers members ticket donation. Partnered with West Bloomfield Parks and Recreation.

Orchard Lake Museum Open House
Sunday, July 8, 2018 1-4 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

Appreciation Reception
Wednesday, July 11, 2018 6-8 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Members, supporters, & volunteers are invited for refreshments to this GWBHS appreciation reception. Complimentary drawing ticket included for choice of multiple prizes. RSVP by July 9 to rsvp@gwbhs.org or 248.518.0871.

Vintage Cars Open House
Sunday, August 12, 2018 1-4 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Interested in seeing and learning about vintage cars? View an exhibit about early auto entrepreneur Walter Flanders, who summered in West Bloomfield. All are welcome to bring vintage cars for a showcase in the parking lot. Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

One-Room Schoolhouse Open House
Sunday, September 9, 2018 1-4 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Ray Lucas shares research about one-room schoolhouses in Oakland County, with plot maps dating back to 1872, with over 40 photos of schoolhouses that are still in existence. Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

Carriages to Cars
Wednesday, September 12, 2018 7 pm, West Bloomfield Library Main Meeting Room, 4600 Walnut Lake Road
Mike West illustrates the rise and fall of the carriage industry, the beginning of motor vehicle manufacturing, and the reminders that can be still be seen today. Sponsored with West Bloomfield Township Library. No charge.

Pine Lake Cemetery Tour
Saturday, October 13, 2018 10-11:30 am, Northeast corner of Lone Pine & Middlebelt Road
Learn about the deceased buried at Pine Lake Cemetery. Docents at gravesites will explain the lives of sports figures, founding residents, and prominent people now at rest in this historical setting. A $5 donation is requested. Optional restaurant gathering afterwards. For more information, call 248-757-2451. Weather permitting; no rain date scheduled.

1817: Finding Oakland County Open House
Sunday, October 14, 2018 1-4 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Learn about the 1817 West Bloomfield Township Survey with Helen Jane Peters, which measured and marked the boundaries of the 25 townships in Oakland County and its significance to the settling of the area. Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

Autumn Nature Walk
Sunday, October 14, 2018 2-3 pm, Orchard Lake Nature Sanctuary, 4700 Pontiac Trail
Join Naturalist Carol Fink for a guided tour. Walk through rolling terrain and explore seasonal autumn beauty. Sponsored with the Orchard Lake Nature Sanctuary. No charge.

Military Memorabilia Open House
Sunday, November 11, 2018 1-4 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Do you have military memorabilia to share during the Open House? We will exhibit some World War I relics and welcome anyone to bring in their military memorabilia from any time period. Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.

Centennial of “Detroit’s Own Polar Bears” Military Intervention in Russia
Wednesday, November 14, 2018 7 pm, West Bloomfield Library Main Meeting Room, 4600 Walnut Lake Road
The “Polar Bears” of the US Army’s American North Russia Expeditionary Force (ANREF) were sent to North Russia in Sept. 1918 by President Wilson to participate in the Allied Intervention in the Russian Civil War. Many of their battles with the Bolshevik Red Army were fought after the Armistice was signed on Nov. 11, 1918. Learn about the reasons for the intervention, how they survived the harsh conditions while fighting on enemy soil and how public pressure eventually brought them home. The presentation will also include maps, contemporary photos, as well as recent photos taken at some of the battlefronts. Sponsored with West Bloomfield Township Library. No charge.

Vintage Wooden Toys Open House
Sunday, December 9, 2018 1-4 pm, Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Enjoy our vintage wooden toy collection, along with other vintage toys, this holiday season. Permanent exhibits will be featured interpreting local area history and culture. Hands-on activities. No charge.


Monthly Open Houses
Second Sundays, 1-4 p.m., Orchard Lake Museum, 3951 Orchard Lake Road
Enjoy temporary and permanent exhibits interpreting area history and culture. Occasionally guest presenters share their interests. No charge.