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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Get Out and Play! 9 Ways to Celebrate National Park and Recreation Month

Photo by Diana Robinson (Flickr)

Do you know what month it is? It's National Park and Recreation Month! Whether you head to the park down the street or drive to a park across the country, now's the perfect time to get out and play. I'm excited to celebrate, and here are some fun ways you can celebrate this special month, too.

Promote the Event

National Park and Recreation Month is too important to keep to yourself! From posters to Pinterest, engage your community with promotional tools from the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA). I know I'll be hanging posters in my neighborhood and sharing activity suggestions on social media.

Try Geocaching

Have you always wanted to go on a real scavenger hunt? Now you can when you go geocaching! Register online, grab your GPS, and find treasures hidden around the park.

Go for a Hike

There's no better way to enjoy National Park and Recreation Month than by simply going to a park and hiking with your family, friends, and pets! Whether you enjoy a familiar trail or find a new one like my girls and I will do, get out there and appreciate nature.

Plan a Picnic at the Park

Pack a lunch and picnic essentials, invite your family, and enjoy a picnic in the nearest park. My girls and I will sit on a blanket in the grass near the play area, but you could challenge your family by hiking to a scenic picnic location before eating your yummy lunch.

Organize a Giant Capture the Flag Game

Remember playing Capture the Flag during elementary-school gym class? This month, dust off your skills, invite everyone you know, and gather in your local park to play this lively game. It can span the entire park and keep you entertained all day.

Participate in the NRPA Throwback Thursday Instagram Video Challenge

What were you doing in 1985? Get ready to bring back your big hairdo and aerobic dance moves as you celebrate the 30th anniversary of National Park and Recreation Month. Join the Throwback Thursday Instagram Video Challenge with your family and friends and have a fun time raising awareness for your local parks!

Clean Up a Park

Litter harms critters and groundwater. It's ugly, too. My girls and I will spend time this month picking up litter and making our neighborhood park a cleaner place for everyone to enjoy. Will you join us by cleaning up your local park?

Go on a Natural Scavenger Hunt

How many local birds, plants, stones, trees, animals, and other natural items can you find in 30 minutes? Find out when you go on a natural scavenger hunt in your local park. Create a list of items and divide into teams or challenge individuals as you explore the park and have fun in nature.

Check Out Local Events

I love celebrating special occasions with my community, and this month is no exception. I'll use the NRPA's website and search my local community's websites, social media, and other resources to find celebratory events in my neighborhood. Join your neighbors, too, as you check out local events.

In case you've missed it, I'm excited to celebrate National Park and Recreation Month. I invite you to join me and invite your family and friends to get out and play in our local parks and recreational areas. How will you have fun and play outdoors this month?

Find more about the author: Kim Hart

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