Places to go and things to see by Gypsy Bev

Archive for July, 2021

Family Fun at Storybook Trails

Something new has been added to entertainment for youngsters who enjoy a walk in nature. Ohio Department of Natural Resources added Storybook Trails in 2020 to five state parks as a place for youngsters to explore the world of books as well as nature. Ohio is one of only seven states with free admission to all of its 75 state parks.

This Storybook Trail entrance is at Dillon State Park.

The first park to have a Storybook Trail was Alum Creek State Park. Other parks that share the nature trail include Dillon, John Bryan, Maumee Bay, and Wingfoot State Parks. More will be added. Here families can walk down scenic trails while learning about nature from authors who received inspiration from it.

Each park features a different book regarding nature and the books are changed at least once every year. This year, ODNR partnered with Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library and the Ohio Governor’s Imagination Library to provide story content to the trails.

Reading and enjoying nature are two important values being developed. These Storybook Trails bring books to life for children and families. Along the way, you might want to sit down at a picnic table to enjoy lunch or a snack in the great out-of-doors. Some of the trails are paved while others are grass.

This summer, read “In the Trees, Honey Bees” along the Dillon trail.

Dillon State Park in Zanesville was the first Storybook Trail in Muskingum County. Here the story of “In the Trees, Honeybees” by Lori Mortensen is presented in child-high pages along Black Locust Trail. That’s down by the beach and ball courts with a great playground close by.

Children enjoy reading the story page by page.

“In the Trees, Honey Bees” is a rhyming book about nature. Younger children always like rhymes while on the sidebar there are creative activities and information about bees, pollination, and honey for older children. Students actually chose this book as they understand the need to save the honey bees.

This half-mile trail encourages children to explore the world of nature and is not too long for younger children or grandparents. There are 16 colorful child-high panels that bring the book to life and feature fun facts, nature clues, and activities. Trail-side interactive panels will have readers buzzing like a bee or breaking into a bee dance. These boards also encourage reading as you read the entire book along the trail.

Some activities will take you on a side trail that circles back to the main trail so you don’t miss any of the story. These extras add excitement to the day if you have the time and energy.

Choose a book from Little Free Library at the end of the trail.

When you are finished walking the trail, stop at the Free Little Library, where you can borrow a book to take home with you or leave books for someone else to enjoy.

This young man enjoyed reading the story last summer.

The Muskingum County Library liked this idea so much that they created a Story Walk in downtown Zanesville in June 2020. They change their stories with the seasons so you will frequently have a new adventure.

Stories change frequently on the Story Walk and the walk ends at the library.

At this time, you can read the story of “Officer Buckle and Gloria” as the pages are set in the beautiful flower containers along 5th Street beginning at Market Street, and end up at the Muskingum County Library.

Families enjoy the Story Walk in downtown Zanesville.

Officer Buckle presents safety programs to Napville Elementary School. But the children pay little attention until…he brings his dog, Gloria, along with him. The children love the antics of Gloria. Take the Story Walk and find out how the story ends.

Kidzville in Riverside Park provides an enjoyable and safe place for children and families.

Plans are near completion for another Story Walk near Kidzville in Riverside Park along the beautiful Muskingum River. Permanent frames will be installed this summer downtown and at the park so stories can be changed frequently.

Book pages have been enlarged for easy and fun reading.

Placing Story Walks at strategic places in the county where the community frequents will encourage reading and exercise. Springtime has brought families and their children to Kidzville as a great place to play in the fresh air. It’s a busy place. Many families are looking forward to the opening of the Kidzville Story Walk.

All three story trails provide a great place for a free stroll through nature with your children or grandchildren as you read a book, get some exercise, and explore the world of nature together.

Follow this shady trail to read all pages of the story at Dillon State Park.

Storybook Trail at Dillion State Park just west of Zanesville is the perfect place for a day with the entire family. Often visitors see white-tailed deer, grouse, wild turkeys, waterfowl, and sometimes even a bald eagle. The trail is located near a nice playground with a picnic area, and very close to the beach for a day in the sun. Visit there soon for free outdoor family fun. Be sure to pack a picnic basket!

Tuscora Park Creates Happy Family Memories

An overview of Tuscora Park is shown across the peaceful lake.

Look for the Stars and Stripes lining the road as you approach beautiful Tuscora Park in New Philadelphia. It’s a great place for a family get-together or just to relax for a while. Many varied activities make it somewhere the entire family will enjoy.

The Reeves family of Dover opened Tuscora Park back in June 1907. One of the park’s first attractions was a swimming pool. Jeremiah Reeves and his family operated the park until 1915 when the city of New Philadelphia purchased the site. It became so popular that streetcars ran to the park entrance!

The midway provides seating so parents and grandparents can watch the children have a great time.

No matter whether you like swimming, tennis, miniature golf, or an old-fashioned concert in the park, your family will find Tuscora Park to be an affordable place for family fun. There is no cost for admission.

This hand-carved 1928 Spillman carousel has been in the park since 1941.

Amusement rides create a big attraction for the youngsters. One of the first amusement rides was the hand-carved Herschell Spillman carousel, built in 1928. It became a permanent part of the park in 1941. This all-wooden carousel has thirty-six carved horses and two chariots traveling around 14 original oil paintings.

Swings have been a popular ride for years for those who like the feeling of flying.

Swings, airplanes, and car rides are favorites of the children. An adult must accompany the child on the roller coaster, train, and carousel, where its music is provided by a 153-band organ. The Ferris Wheel was not operating during my visit. As you can see, there is plenty of fun for children of all ages.

Folks stop by Tuscora Park Rotary Railroad station to purchase tickets for the rides.

Tickets for the rides at $1 each or 10 for $8, and miniature golf at $3 a person can be purchased at the Tuscora Park Rotary Railroad.

Stop by the concession stand for treats during those hungry moments.

Find all your fair favorites at a large concession stand near the swimming pools. Order hamburgers, hot dogs, french fries, ice cream, and even cotton candy.

Swimming provides relief from the heat on hot summer days.

Nothing beats a dip in the pool on a hot summer’s day. Three swimming pools make the water more enjoyable for different age groups and abilities. Lifeguards are stationed around both of the larger pools to ensure the safety of the swimmers. Their Olympic size pool has three lanes that are dedicated to lap swimming and exercising. A Diving Pool has low and high dives for the enjoyment of many. The Kiddie Pool provides a safe place for the little ones as it is fenced in.

There are many picnic shelters located throughout the park.

The new Teen Center opened this year as a place to participate in different classes and activities. There are three sections to the Teen Center: displays, activities and programs, and merchandise. The local library is assisting with programs that young people will enjoy. A nature lesson might include for example rain sticks, crystal flowers, or ice cream cone seedlings.

Summer Showcase at the Amphitheater provides Sunday evening entertainment throughout the summer.

Their Summer Showcase at the Amphitheater features fresh entertainment each Sunday evening. Seating on the hillside makes it possible for everyone to have a great view while enjoying the sounds of rock bands, country music, or jazz.

A train provides the setting for one of several play areas in the park.

Many picnic shelters and tables plus several playground areas make this a great place for a picnic or family reunion. There’s even a special year-round, air-conditioned pavilion, Park Place, where families can meet for the day in real comfort.

Feed the ducks all year long while relaxing along the lake.

Tuscora Park is open each year between Memorial Day and Labor Day for amusement rides, miniature golf, and swimming. But the park can be enjoyed year-round as a place to relax around the lake and feed the ducks or have a picnic. Local residents are proud of their park and enjoy taking part in activities as well as supporting improvements that need to be made.

Build great family memories at Tuscora Park. It’s a great place to spend the day. Plentiful smiles indicate that everyone from grandparents to children is having a great time.

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