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Home / Oakland County / Why I Love Thelma Spencer Park in Rochester Hills – Spencer Beach: Photos {updated 6/2023}

Why I Love Thelma Spencer Park in Rochester Hills – Spencer Beach: Photos {updated 6/2023}

If you are looking for a great beach with a fun playground, then check out Thelma Spencer Park in Rochester Hills. This is one of our favorite beaches in Metro Detroit, offering 113 acres of fun. The Rochester Hills park offers swimming, sports, fishing, picnicking and more.

Thelma Spencer Park in Rochester Hills - Spencer Beach

Thelma Spencer Park in Rochester Hills

This wonderful Rochester Hills park has a lot to offer. From summer swimming to winter ice skating, it is a great local hidden gem we visit at least a few times a year.

Spencer Park Amenities

When you first arrive at Spencer Park you will notice a large building that houses the modern restrooms along with a concession stand and first aid station. On the left, near the parking lot there are wagons for guests to use as well. This is extremely helpful when you have packed a lot and still need to hold the hand of a young child.

Thelma Spencer Park in Rochester Hills

There is also an outdoor shower and foot spray just on the other side of this building. Perfect for washing off sand at the end of your visit.

Picnics at Spencer Beach

If you enjoy summer picnics, then Thelma Spencer Park has you covered. From picnic area with charcoal grills to shelter and tent rentals, the park offers an amazing picnicking space for gatherings and celebrations. We love that there are plenty of garbage cans in the area and green space nearby, so the kids can play. The area also has a lot of trees, providing cooler, shady areas in the hot summer months.

picnics at spencer beach

Thelma Spencer Beach at Carter Lake

For me, the main attraction at Spencer Park is the beach. There are two swimming areas, which is great if you have younger children.

Thelma Spencer Beach at Carter Lake

The area to the left, the Wading Area, is great for younger guests and non swimmers. The wading area has a max depth of three feet.  Also, the area is much smaller and it’s easier for adults to keep an eye on the children in this section.

The main swimming area is much larger and goes up to four feet in front of the blue rope. Beyond the blue rope the lake depth can get up to 16 feet.

Thelma Spencer Beach at Carter Lake

Lifeguards are on duty through the summer. The sand is a little rocky, but not too rocky that it hurts your feet and the water quality has been stellar during each of our visits throughout the years.

Playground at Spencer Park

The playground area at Spencer Park offers two structures as well as swings and a Gaga Ball court. There is also a platform swing and a zip line. There are shady areas around the edges along with benches. The ground is covered with wood chips, so shoes are recommended in this area.

Playground at Spencer Park

Watercraft Rentals at Thelma Spencer Park in Rochester Hills

Guests can rent a variety of items during their visit to Spencer Park. They offer rowboats, pedal boats, stand-up paddleboards as well as kayaks. Rentals are available from Memorial weekend until mid-August. At the time of publication (6/18/23) watercraft rentals were: $8 per hour for pedal boats and rowboats and $10 per hour for kayaks and paddle boards.

Watercraft Rentals at Thelma Spencer Park in Rochester Hills

Activities at Thelma Spencer Park in Rochester Hills

Spencer Park also offers fishing (DNR regulations apply) with an accessible fishing pier near the watercraft rental.

Fishing Thelma Spencer Park in Rochester Hills

Guests can also enjoy tennis courts as well as a sand volleyball court. Also, ladder golf and checkers are available in the picnic areas.

Wooder nature paths provide fun trails for hiking in the warmer months, and non-groomed cross-country trails in the winter. Finally, Spencer Park offers ice skating (and skate rentals) in the winter months.

Other Parks in Rochester Hills

  • Avon Nature Study Area is a 102.5-acre park that offers nature trails, wildlife viewing, a pond as well as a gazebo.
  • Avondale Park a park that features sports fields for rent together with a playground and picnic areas.
  • Bloomer Park is a 200-acre community park. The park features sports fields, picnic shelters, a velodrome, trials as well as a play area. There is a fee to use this park.
  • Earl E. Borden Park is a 143-acre sports park. This park hosts sports fields, batting cages, tennis courts, basketball courts together with a roller hockey rink.
  • Eugene S. Nowicki Park is a 340-acre undeveloped park.
  • Helen V. Allen Park features softball diamonds on it’s 4.5 acres.
  • Innovation Hills is currently under development. The park features a beautiful green space with lighted pathways together with fragrant gardens.
  • Museum at Van Hoosen Farm is located along Stony creek. The farm offers tours, special events day camps as well as weddings.
  • Thelma G Spencer Park is a 113-acre park. The community park has an entry fee and features a beautiful lake together with a beach area for swimming.
  • Veterans Memorial Pointe is a 5.1-acre park. The park features a granite monument, gazebo as well as a memorial pathway.
  • Wabash Park is a small neighborhood park. Offers a picnic area, community gardens together with a small playground.
  • Yates Park is located directly across from Yates Cider Mill. The park hosts several picnic tables as well as many fishing sites along the Clinton River.

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More Family Fun in Rochester Hills

Yates Cider Mill

This location offers freshly made cider, donuts, as well as many varieties of apples. Bakes goods, Frankenmuth fudge, fruit preserves and honey are also available.

The Big, Wooden Staircase: Bloomer Park

Over 200 steps down to explore nature at Bloomer Park in Rochester Hills. Don’t miss this Big, Wooden Staircase.

Ice Ages Come and Go Cranbrook Science Museum in Bloomfield Hills

Innovation Hills Park

Innovation Hills Park in Rochester Hills just debuted their one-mile boardwalk trails in July of 2020. Enjoy a picnic, fishing, hiking, and the green space.

Amber Louchart
Author: Amber Louchart

Amber is the proud mother to four beautiful children, Damian (27), Rosaleigh (14), Carlyn (11), and Naomi (8). Her family also includes four cats. She loves being a stay-at-home mom and feels blessed to be able to care for her children full-time and provide them with so many opportunities through Metro Detroit Mommy. In addition to Metro Detroit Mommy, Amber has a passion for hosting karaoke with Malibu Entertainment.  She enjoys the metro Detroit nightlife especially, singing, dancing and meeting new people.