How to Make the Most out of Your Local Parks for the Winter

Don’t ditch your park this year just because it is getting colder out – try some of these activities to make the most of your favorite park.

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Local parks are an incredibly valuable resource – they bring the community together, give the kids a place to play, give adults a place to exercise and meet up with others, and going out to the park also lets you get in tune with nature.  Though it is getting colder out, there are many ways to still make the most of your local park and get your kids to go outside and let some of their energy out. 

Tree Lightings
T’is the season for tree lightings across local parks, schools, shops, and everywhere else you can think of – though parks often look most beautiful because the tree is in its most natural setting.  Check back with LongIsland.com soon for our comprehensive guide to tree lightings in Nassau and Suffolk County!

State Park Events
Many state parks hold family events, and coming up at Sunken Meadow State Park is “Camo Critters,” a family adventure where kids and adults alike can learn about how animals camouflage and how they can even change the color of their skin to hide right under our noses! The event will be held on Saturday, November 22 from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., and the program fee is $4 per adult and $3 per child.

A Scavenger Hunt for Craft Materials
If your park has lots of trees and plants, consider it like a natural scavenger hunt for craft materials like pinecones, pine needles, leaves, twigs, flowers, and other interesting finds.  These materials can lend themselves to neat projects like natural Christmas tree ornaments or centerpieces for the table during the holiday season. Before the colorful leaves turn dark and dry, try collecting some of your favorite foliage to make crafts like Leaf Lanterns and Leaf Animals.  You can also use your imagination and make something that is uniquely yours!

Take a Hike
Tomorrow, November 17, is National Take a Hike Day, and though Long Island may not be the first place that pops into your mind when you think of hiking, there are numerous hiking trails through local and state parks where you can see exquisite nature scenes and even run into some of Long Island’s wildlife.  Though most of the area is relatively flat, hiking trails on Long Island can take you through breathtaking pine barrens, maritime forests, sprawling nature preserves, and to the many beautiful beaches surrounding the Island.  To get motivated, join a hiking group near you and make some friends while you get exercise in the crisp winter weather.