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Cedar Hill News

Posted on: April 23, 2020

10 NATURALLY FUN WAYS TO ENJOY THE OUTDOORS

Cedar Hill Parks are open for natural play and adventure!  Parks trails and open spaces provide a wide array of mental and physical health benefits.While park restrooms, playgrounds, athletic fields/courts, and pavilions are closed, our outdoor spaces are still available for you and your family. We must all remain diligent and consistent in taking steps to make your visit as safe and enjoyable as possible. Remember to follow CDC guidelines for visiting our parks - stay home if you are sick, wash your hands before you visit and when you return home, and always keep 6 ft distance between yourself and others.

Cedar Hill has 32 neighborhood and community parks, and a number of multi-use trails. Find a new place to explore at cedarhilltx.com/parks, and enjoy these 10 ways to stay active and enjoy nature with the whole family:

  1. Log your miles for a virtual marathon. Races might be canceled, but fun and fitness are not. Log 26.2 miles before April 30 and get a free finisher’s shirt from Cedar Hill Parks & Recreation. Find a trail to get started, and log your miles here
  2. Capture a special moment and try your hand at photography. Spring is officially here, and there are plenty of stunning flowers and greenery to photograph. You can also take this time to photograph your loved ones against a natural backdrop. Share your photos with us using the hashtags #cedarhillstrong and #welovecedarhill.
  3. Find a Feathered Friend. Now that the weather has warmed up, many beautiful birds are migrating back to the area. Spend a day at the park looking for different birds species, and you can even make a little competition of it between the family. If you do not want to leave the comfort of your own home, you can do a “Backyard Bird Count”. Simply sit outside for 15 minutes and record all the birds you see. Search "Audubon Bird Guide" in the Apple and Google Play stores for a complete field guide to over 800 North American bird species.
  4. Support a Local Restaurant with a to-go picnic. Grab a blanket and order takeout from your favorite local restaurant for an outdoor picnic in a park or in your backyard. In this difficult time, you will be supporting a local business while saving yourself the hassle of prepping and packing a meal for your picnic! 
  5. Make a Map. Take a walk around a park and then have you and your children draw the map of the park including important features and details from your walk. For additional fun, you can go on a treasure hunt using your maps! Hide a special prize somewhere in the park, mark the location on the maps and have the family look for the prize using their maps.
  6. Preserve a Little Bit of Nature. Keep the little ones busy with a nature hunt. Collect different leaves to press and preserve. Curious about the plants you gathered? There are plenty of free apps that can help you identify your flora gatherings! 
  7. Break a Sweat. Create an outdoor obstacle course in your own yard to get you and your family’s blood pumping! You can use whatever you have at home to create your own course. You can tie string in different patterns between two chairs to create “lasers” you must weave through; set up small pieces of cardboard as the safe steps over “hot lava”; the possibilities are endless. Use your imagination and be as creative as you can! This is a great alternative to keep the kids active and entertained without having to use a playground. 
  8. Chalk your walk. Create encouraging messages and art with sidewalk chalk for neighbors to see. In this time of social distancing, this is a creative way to stay connected to your community and come together in a time when we all need a little positivity. Get your chalk starter kit through curbside service at the Zula B. Wylie Public Library.
  9. Camp Comfortably. Enjoy a night of camping from the comfort of your own backyard. If you have a tent and sleeping bags, set them up in the backyard; but if you don’t have camping supplies, you can use a tarp and blankets to set up camp! Use your grill for some camp cooking: roast hotdogs, toast marshmallows, or cook up some yummy veggie skewers. The spring weather is perfect for a night outdoors, so you and the family can enjoy stargazing (and maybe even spot a shooting star!). 
  10. Find Your Center. If you are feeling stressed, try doing outdoor yoga to destress and grow your appreciation for our planet. Studies have shown that being surrounded by nature has a correlation with lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol, so combining yoga with the great outdoors can help you relax. Get your little ones involved, and even your pup can join you for yoga (though your pup may outshine you doing the downward dog position). Check out our latest yoga session with Chelsey from the Zula B. Wylie Public Library!

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