Pure Award

pure award

Recognizing Michigan organizations who have incorporated innovative and exemplary best practices in natural, cultural, and heritage stewardship into their daily operations.

Created in 2015, the Pure Award was an initiative of the Resources and Environment Implementation Committee of the 2012-2017 Michigan Tourism Strategic Plan whose goal is for Michigan to: “Be internationally recognized for our stewardship of – and rich opportunities to experience – our natural, cultural and heritage resources.”

After receiving the award in 2018, Michigan Cares for Tourism elected to continue the management of the award after the original committee was disbanded. 

With Board of Director members, industry professionals and in coordination with Travel Michigan and the Governor’s Conference on Tourism, the Pure Award continues to recognize tourism stewards in Michigan.

Pure Award Applications

The Pure Award, announced annually the Pure Michigan Governor's Conference on Tourism (November 2-4, 2021 in Detroit), is currently accepting nominations for organizations who have implemented best practices to preserve Michigan's natural, cultural and heritage stewardship. Nominations are due by September 24, 2021.
Nominations open

Past Recipients

To date, GTRLC has protected nearly 44,000 acres of land and more than 140 acres of shoreline along rivers, lakes, and streams.

The nonprofit’s conservation efforts focus on balancing the growth of the region by permanently protecting all that makes it special: fresh, clean water, working farms, lush forests, coastal dunes, trails for hiking and biking, scenic vistas, and wildlife habitat and corridors.

Since 2015, the Detroit Jazz Festival has worked to become the greenest jazz festival in the Midwest. Through their innovative partnership with DTE Energy Foundation on the Festival’s greening project, the festival is taking big steps to reduce its carbon footprint, educate attendees, and increase its waste diversion rate. 

By working collaboratively with stakeholders, the Festival continues to support sustainable tourism and events taking place within the city by creating best practices for other Detroit events. 

2018 - Michigan Cares For Tourism

Michigan Cares for Tourism received this award for their work as a100% volunteer, 100% give back non-profit organization helping restore Michigan’s historic, cultural and natural attractions. Their work to date engaged 2,000 volunteers and donated in excess $500,000 in labor and supplies to 15 Michigan destinations.

Their events occur throughout Michigan including Fayette State Historic Park in Garden, Sturgeon Point Lighthouse in Harrisville, CCC Museum and Ram Center in Roscommon, the Felt Estate in Saugatuck, Belle Isle State Park in Detroit (photo on left) and Mill Lake in Chelsea.

Headlands International Sky Park identifies the night sky as a vast and vanishing natural resource that is essential to today’s global conversation about habitat protection, energy resource management and tourism. Home to approximately 550 acres of woodlands, more than two miles of undeveloped Lake Michigan shoreline and many species of rare and endangered plant life, Headlands became one of the first ten International Dark Sky Parks in the world in 2011.

Inaugural winner of the Pure Award the Grand Haven Salmon Festival was selected as the recipient for its strong commitment to sustainability and zero-waste festival endeavors. In 2015, 96% of the festival’s waste was waste composted or recycled, and the remaining 40 pounds of trash were processed in a waste-to-energy incinerator.