Emmet County District Court Administrator Lisa Smith said Daniel Elliott offered a no-contest plea Monday to the misdemeanor charge.
The 50-year-old Orchard Lake resident had been charged with misdemeanor domestic violence.
Police said Elliott and his wife had a physical confrontation during an August visit to Petoskey. He then took his three children to Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, where they spent the night and later were found after the lengthy search.
No sentencing date has been sent.