Nature Society

Facebook button-50

Dragonfly Pond in the middle of February 2024

Notice sign

See below links for upcoming Nature Walks & Speaker Programs:

Nature Walks:   

Speaker Programs:  

We are looking for people to help us look for Ash Tree saplings as part of our Nature Society Citizen Scientist studies program at Cummingston Park on Sunday, March 10th beginning at 2:00 pm.  Park & meet at Torquay & Leafdale. Registration is not required.  No special skills are required.  It has been 20 years since the Emerald Ash borer killed our ash trees.   The question is, are they coming back?   


Royal Oak Nature Society’s 16th Annual Soiree/Fundraiser

Our Annual Fundraiser will be held on Thursday, April 25, 2024, from 7 to 10 pm 

at the Royal Oak Farmers Market.  For more information, please click here.

RONS logo revised

Fence Patrol for 2024

We need help keeping an eye on the fence at Tenhave Woods.  Maintaining the fence helps to keep deer out of the park and in turn, protects the native plants in the woods.  Falling branches, wind, and humans sometimes knock down the top wires and cause holes in the fence.  We like to have someone walk the fence line once a week to ensure that it is well maintained from the end of March to mid-November.  If you are interested in signing up for 2024, please click here.



WHO ARE WE: The Royal Oak Nature Society is a volunteer group working with the City of Royal Oak to protect, maintain and promote the usage of Royal Oak's two nature preserves, Cummingston Park and Tenhave Woods.  We are also in the process of developing an arboretum and wildflower garden (Fred A. Erb Arboretum) behind the Royal Oak Senior Center (3500 Marais).  Go to the Nature Society page to learn more about us.  

ABOUT OUR PARKS: Both Cummingston Park and Tenhave Woods are nature preserves that are over 20 acres in size and are heavily wooded with lined trails.  They are designated by the city of Royal Oak as conservancy parks where the protection and management of the animal and plant/tree life in the parks is the primary concern.  They are open daily to the public from dawn to dusk.  Click here to find out why dogs are not allowed inside either nature preserve.  Go to Nature Preserves page to learn more about Cummingston Park and Tenhave Woods.  

The Fred A. Erb Arboretum is a park located behind the Royal Oak Senior Center.  It has been under development since 2007.  The long range plan for our arboretum is to create a collection of native trees/plants that are not found in Tenhave Woods Link on to Royal Oak Arboretum to learn about its history and progress.  

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:  To find out where these parks are located on a map and a map of their trail systems, click here.  Wearing boots while in the parks is recommended during the winter and spring months. Using insect repellent and dressing appropriately is advised from late spring through the end of summer.  To learn more about these parks firsthand, check out our Naturalist Led Nature Walks schedule.

Volunteer Opportunities

The Nature Society is always looking for volunteers to help us in many different ways. Please click "Volunteer Opportunities" button (right)  to check out volunteer opportunities that are available and that you might be interested in getting involved with.    

An orange circle reading, "Volunteer Opportunities."

Several years ago, the City of Royal Oak produced a “Nature Walking Adventure” pamphlet.   It laid out a one-mile nature walk commencing at our arboretum entrance (next to the Senior Center), leading up & into Tenhave Woods and along some of its trails.  The walk leads to six points of interest that are explained via a QR code and from a webpage. If you would like to learn more, please check out this webpage.  

1 Mile Nature Walk b

To access the Nature Society calendar, please click the "CALENDAR" button on your right.

Calendar 220-229
Free membership 2

General Membership (No Cost)

If you would like to be on the Nature Society’s e-mail blast list, please sign up to be a General Member.  It is free!  Just send us an e-mail stating that you would like to be a General Member along with your name, complete street address including zip code and e-mail address.  Our e-mail blast includes program/walk schedules and other current information.  Click here for more information about our associate, supporting & patron memberships.

Friends of Fungi Mycology Club

This group promotes the understanding of, and an appreciation for, fungi in general and those fungi found in Tenhave Woods, Cummingston Park, and other local urban woods. The group is open to anyone who wants to learn more about fungi which includes mushrooms. Check out this link for more information including program schedule.

Mushroom July 2022
unlawful 2

Problems in the Parks

 If you are near Tenhave Woods, Cummingston Park or the Royal Oak Arboretum and see or hear suspicious or unlawful behavior, please help by calling the Royal Oak Police Department’s non-emergency number, 248-246-3500 and inform them of the problem.  We would also appreciate it if you could also let us know about the problem by contacting us at 248-246-3380 & leave a message or by e-mail.

Land History


Behind the natural beauty of Tenhave Woods and Cummingston Park, there is a land history to explore. Please check out these links to Tenhave Woods (PDF) and Cummingston Park (PDF) to learn about the people who once lived on these lands.


The Goodwin family was the first owner of the land that now includes Tenhave Woods and Royal Oak High School. The photo (right) is of Samuel Volney Goodwin's family and farmhouse during the middle 1880s. Samuel was the third generation of Goodwins to own this piece of land.  The house was located just south of Normandy Rd. & just east of Crooks.

Goodwin Farm House March 2018

Royal Oak Civic Foundation

The Nature Society is a member of the Royal Oak Civic Foundation, established by the city to accept donations and endowments for the improvement of civic institutions.  Click here if you would like to make a donation to the Royal Oak Nature Society.

Royal Oak Inter-Club Council

The Nature Society is a member of the Royal Oak Inter-Club Council.  To learn more about the Inter-Club, please click here.