MEDINA, Ohio – When the temperature outside drops, it’s tempting to curl up inside with a mug of cocoa and a good book. But it’s healthier to bundle up for a walk in nature.
Mentally, being outdoors reduces symptoms of stress and anxiety. Physically, the hike is great for your heart, blood pressure, and muscles.
The Medina County Park District offers a variety of hikes in a variety of parks that will interest, entertain, and / or educate anyone brave enough to venture out. The following list is just an example. Remember that the parks are open every day for walks, even without a guide or specific purpose.
A healthy dose of nature hiking series: 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Saturday, December 4, Oenslager Nature Center, 6100 Ridge Road, Sharon Township. Once a month, join a naturalist for a brisk hike. This healthy hike will last between 3 and 5 miles. From 10 years to adult. No registration required. To free.
Series of self-guided natural discovery hikes: Rocks and fossils: 6 from morning to one hour after sunset, Saturday December 4 to Sunday December 19, Princess Ledges Nature Preserve, 4361 Spruce Ave., Brunswick. During this hike, you will learn about the geology of the area, as well as the prehistoric animals that once lived here. Visit the park to hike the trail and read the signs. Ideal for ages 7 to adulthood. No registration required. To free.
Seasonal discoveries: 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Wednesday December 8, Oenslager Nature Center. It is an easy walk to observe the unfolding of nature in the park. From 7 years to adult. No registration required. To free.
Gingerbread trip: All day from Saturday December 11 to Sunday January 2, Hubbard Valley Park, 8600 Hubbard Valley Road, Seville. Take this hike along the smoothest trail in town. With the gingerbread people as your guides, hike the trail to learn how gingerbread cookies and cakes are made. In the center of the all-inclusive trail is a toboggan hill so if the weather permits this can be a two-for-one stop. All ages. No registration required. To free.
Christmas guys: From Friday December 17 to Sunday January 9, Oenslager Nature Center. The popular and whimsical Yule Lads are back! Follow the trail and find the 13 mischievous boys hidden in this self-guided outdoor scavenger hunt. The gate, the grounds and the building are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. from Tuesday to Saturday and from noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
Winter solstice march: 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Tuesday, December 21, Oenslager Nature Center. Bundle up and join the staff in celebrating the shortest day of the year with a nature walk. All ages are welcome. No registration required. To free.
And while the parks themselves are open daily for exploring and exercising, the vacations result in some closures of the neighborhood’s indoor facilities.
Oenslager Nature Center will be closed on December 24, 25 and January 1. Park District headquarters will be closed on December 24, 25, 31 and January 1. The Susan Hambley Nature Center will be closed on December 25 and January 1. .
COVID-19 guidelines require everyone to wear masks when entering buildings in the park district. Masks are optional outside.
For more information and a full list of park programs and activities, log on to medinacountyparks.com.
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