Ten Things to Do at MSU (Without Having to Go to Class!)

Guest blogger Lori Lanspeary from the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitors Bureau shares 10 fun things to do at Michigan State University without having to crack a book! 

Welcome to Spartan Country! Located in East Lansing, visitors can find a wealth of beauty and natural spaces on the sprawling campus of Michigan State University. While most people know MSU by its mascot Sparty and its Big Ten sports teams, did you know that Michigan State University is currently recognized as a world leader in research? Today, the school has over 200 academic programs offered by 17 degree granting colleges.

Beyond the academics, visitors can find so many things to see and do on campus without signing up for class. Read on for a few ideas.

1. Michigan State University Museum

dinosaur at MSU museum
The MSU Museum | Photo Courtesy of the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitor Bureau

Michigan’s first Smithsonian-affiliate, this museum is filled to the brim with research artifacts and natural wonders from around the world. And both the kids and adults love the dinosaurs!

2. W. J. Beal Botanical Gardens – Michigan State University  

Flowers in the W.J. Beal Botanical Garden
W.J. Beal Botanical Garden | Photo Courtesy of the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitor Bureau

The oldest continuously-operated garden of its type in the U.S. with over 5,000 species organized in economic, systematic landscape and ecological groupings. And the MSU Horticulture Gardens – A family of three adjoining gardens including research gardens, landscape arboretum and the delightful 4-H Children’s Garden.

3. Abrams Planetarium, MSU Campus

Abrams Planetarium Observatory
Abrams Planetarium | Photo Courtesy of the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitor Bureau

Sit back and enjoy the wonders of the universe in the sky theatre.

4. Beaumont Tower Carillon at Michigan State University

Beaumont Tower in the summer
Beaumont Tower | Photo Courtesy of the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitor Bureau

This is the iconic 104-ft bell tower where carillonneurs play noontime recitals and legends tell of first kisses at midnight and engagements in the shadow of the tower. Did you know that it is said that a Spartan is destined to marry their sweetheart if they kiss under Beaumont Tower? 

5. MSU Farms

Colts racing, beef calves frolicking and mooing dairy cows waiting to be milked are a few of the sights to see when visiting the farms.

6. Wharton Center for Performing Arts

Wharton Center
The Wharton Center | Photo Courtesy of James Lenon

Catch the latest major touring Broadway blockbusters plus a great lineup of performing arts at Wharton.

7. Michigan State University - Dairy Complex , Food Processing Plant, and Dairy Store

Eating ice cream at the MSU Dairy Store
The MSU Dairy Store | Photo Courtesy of James Lenon

It’s always hard to choose betwen the 32 flavors of some of the freshest ice cream you’ll ever taste. Or pick up some award-winning cheese varieties. Smiles guaranteed!

8. Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University

Eli Edythe Broad Art Museum
The Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum | Photo Courtesy of the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitor Bureau

This Zaha Hadid-designed art museum presents groundbreaking, international contemporary art across all media and is housed in a pleated stainless steel and glass multi-angled building that in itself is an architectural wonder.

9. Demmer Shooting Sports Education & Training Center

Demmer Center
The Demmer Center | Photo Courtesy of the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitor Bureau

This training site for Michigan State University archery, rifle and pistol club teams is open to the public and promotes the safe use of firearms and archery equipment.

10. Big Ten Sporting Events

MSU Spartan Statue
Spartan Statue | Photo Courtesy of the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitor Bureau

Spartan football, basketball and hockey are among the favorite reasons for a visit to MSU. The resounding chants of Go Green! Go White! echo across campus. Make time for one last stop. Your visit won’t be complete without a photo taken in front of the bronze Spartan Statue near the stadium.

About the Author: Lori Lanspeary works at the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitors Bureau. Need help planning your trip? Contact the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitors Bureau or while visiting Michigan State University, stop by the East Lansing Visitor Center.