Parks Passes

Explore Outdoors!

Research tells us that time in nature can improve our happiness, health, and relationships, enhance our attention, reduce our anxiety, and even increase our creativity and kindness. 

To help you out McWell has some park passes that can be borrowed from us. 

Fernwood Botanical Gardens

The Fernwood pass permits the holder free of charge to any of the more than 450 participating botanical gardens and natural areas. Including Fernwood Botanical Garden (30 minutes from campus). The pass is partnered with the American Horticultural Society Reciprocal Program and ANCA Reciprocal Network which can get you into parks such as the beautiful Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park in Grand Rapids Michigan (less than 2 hours away from campus).

Each of the various parks that this pass grants access to have different rules as to the number of people the pass will accommodate, if you are looking to bring a group please check with the parks website before planning your trip. 

St. Joseph County Parks

The St. Joseph County pass will get you into any of the three St. Joseph County Parks, during times the parks require an entry fee (park hours and fees). The closest St. Joe park is St. Patrick's County Park, 13 minutes from Notre Dame campus.

This pass is for any number of people in one vehicle.

How to Borrow a park pass?

Students can borrow on their own by signing up on the current waitlist, either by coming into McWell or by emailing us at We will need to know your name, Notre Dame Email, and which of the passes you would like to borrow. McWell will then email you when one becomes available. You will have a 24 hours to come pick it up and then need to return it within 7 days after you pick it up. 

Please note, you will need to arrange your own transportation to and from the chosen park.

Reminder McWell hours are: Monday - Wednesday: 8:00 AM - 7:00 PM Thursday - Friday: 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM



Fernwood Botanical Garden Frog Pond With Bench Niles Michigan Us Sally Rockefeller
Explore the beautiful grounds at Fernwood Botanical Garden
St Pat's Canoeing
Hike or go canoeing in St. Pat's Park