The Friends of the Highland Recreation Area group will once again be hosting its annual Haven Hill Festival at the Highland State Recreation Area to raise funds for preserving and restoring the Edsel Ford family’s historic Haven Hill estate structures in the recreation area.
The festival will be held Saturday, Aug. 25 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
While admission to the event is free, visitors need to have a state Recreation Passport on their vehicle registration to enter the recreation area. If not, a pass can be purchased for $10.
The Haven Hill Festival will feature a variety of activities, including a vintage baseball game, summer foods, vintage Model A Ford cars, and walking tours of Haven Hill with a shuttle up and down the hill.
The baseball game will be played between the Haven Hill Barn Stormers ball club from White Lake and Highland and the Lah-De-Dahs from Greenfield Village in Dearborn. Both teams were formed to show how baseball was originally played “back in the day.”
As such, the players will follow the rules similar to those used in the 1860s, which have some major differences from rules governing the game played today:
• Players in the infield have to have one foot on a base when the ball is pitched;
• No stealing, swearing, spitting, or sliding is allowed;
• For batters, there are no balls or strikes called;
• Batters cannot overrun first base, they must stop on it;
• No gloves are allowed. Players must catch the ball bare-handed; and
• After crossing home plate, a player must approach the scorer’s table, ring a bell, and politely request that the scorekeeper “tally your ace.”
The game will start at 1 p.m. at Goose Meadow inside the Highland Recreation Area. Fans are encouraged to bring picnic blankets, sun umbrellas, and folding chairs for the game.
Meanwhile, members from the Livingston A’s will be bringing some of their collector Model A Ford automobiles — which remain in working condition — to this year’s festival.
Also on display at the festival will be an exhibit of never before seen photographs from the Ford family’s Haven Hill estate. The photographs were taken by Harry and Amy North, the original housekeepers employed by the Fords.
The photographs were donated to the Friends of the Highland Recreation Area group by Mr. and Mrs. George Penney of Ontario, Canada.
The recreation area is located off of M-59 between Duck Lake and Bogie Lake Roads, with parking available at the Goose Meadow picnic shelter area, which is the first right turn after you enter.