People filled the Ottawa National Forest Center to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Michigan Wilderness Act. The act passed in 1987, protecting 90,000 acres of forests in Michigan including Sylvania Wilderness.
Jane Elder, who worked on the campaign, says it took ten years to get protection for forests like Sylvania.
"Where we might get through one House, but not the other, through one set of committees and not the other. There was opposition, in part, from people who didn't understand what wilderness designation were all about," said Elder.
The celebration started with a presentation of what it took to make it happen. Afterwards, those involved with the movement spoke to the public of their experience working on the campaign and why they did it.
Tom Church says it's the land.
"This is one of the few spots in the Midwest that has our traditional Sugar Maple, Yellow Birch, Hemlock, and it's a great opportunity for people to get out and see what the entire U.P. once looked like," said Church.
They hope people continue coming out to enjoy the beauty of the Sylvania forest. Although the land is nationally protected, they do have some concerns with invasive plants in the lakes and land.