This weekend we felt the tease of spring as temperatures around West Michigan rose above 60 degrees. And while any seasoned resident of the area knows, that first taste of spring doesn't mean to throw your coat aside and give up on winter quite yet.

But as you stretched your legs this weekend, you may have gotten that familiar itch to get out and do something. While gas prices continue to rise to record highs in the area, it may not be a great time to hit the road and explore the rest of the US. (Although there are a few tips out there on how you can make you gas budget go further.)

But, that doesn't mean there aren't a ton of unique experiences you can have within just an hour (or so) of your front door. Here are some of the neat things you can see in West Michigan that you may have missed or have missed after not visiting for awhile.

You can play mini golf amongst the art at the Muskegon Museum of Art

This temporary exhibit at the Muskegon Museum of Art is worth the short trip. Lasting through May 22nd, you'll have your chance to play 9 holes of mini golf amongst the paintings.

While the course isn't very difficult, the view is great.

Check out the KISS monument in Cadillac

Laura Hardy / TSM
Laura Hardy / TSM
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You heard me right, there is a giant monument to the time that KISS played homecoming at Cadillac high school in 1975. This is the furthest away part of the trip, but well worth it if you want to see an extremely unique part of rock 'n roll history.

While you're there, you might as well check out all of the other places kiss visited during their time there. Oh and good news, they have a website too if you want to learn more before you go.

Enjoy a Sunrise or Sunset on the beach in Grand Haven

Laura Hardy / TSM
Laura Hardy / TSM
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No matter what time of year it is, there is something spectacular about watching the sun rise or set on the lake.

So while you may think you can only go during the weekend on the summers, it's even more magical on that rare mild winter day when no one else is around.

Get lost in Aman Park

Courtesy of James Shotwell
Courtesy of James Shotwell
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This one doesn't even require you to leave Grand Rapids. This unique nature park was left to the city as a gift from Jacob Aman. According to our local Wild Ones chapter, "In 1900 Jacob Aman purchased the property that today is named in his honor for $5,050. Even though he had donated the property to the City in 1926, he retained “life estate” use of 10 acres that he could timber and cultivate as a modest farm for himself."

It's a perfect place to enjoy nature, get some steps in, or let your dog run (on their leash of course!), but you owe it to yourself to enjoy some nature within the city.

Explore Windmill Island

Located in Holland, this little slice of heaven will make you forget you're in the mitten entirely. This 36-acre heritage park is filled with flowers and beautiful Dutch architecture.

Courtesy of Mike Lozon via Tulip Time
Courtesy of Mike Lozon via Tulip Time
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If you wait until May to go, the park blooms with around 175,000 tulips, and in June the gardens change to their annual flowers. Check this one out in late spring to get the full experience.

So go ahead, go visit or (re-visit) some of these great sights in our own backyard. I've made a map on google to make it easier for you.

https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=1niVupq3cCoRI0uMWLqRY8xng--HR-jFr&usp=sharing

And let me know if you know of other neat things around the area others should check out, leave a comment.

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