By Mike Colamarino
Darke Co. Parks
As the last maple leaves continue to fall to frosty mornings and brisk sunsets, we reflect on a prosperous summer here in Darke County. Farmers harvesting their last bushels of corn and soybeans, leaving a restful calm in the countryside. Daylight fading to cold nights just as many arrive home from school or work, gives little time for outdoor activities. This however gives us more time to reflect on the buzzing spring, hustling summer, and bustling fall. Although the work is never finished, this is a perfect time for communion and fellowship.
Take advantage of this holiday season to spend quality time with your friends old and new. All relationships need to be nurtured, and something as small as a phone call can go a long way. We sometimes forget our families won’t stay the same forever. Children grow faster than we realize. Although unrefined in their chaotic exploration, children give us a window to visit our past selves. The priceless opportunity to see the world anew as we once did is always refreshing. You would be surprised what you learn talking to the kiddos.
I’m a strong believer in keeping wholesome family traditions alive. For Thanksgiving, I like to rally the family outside to pass the football and work up an appetite. This gives the parents time to prepare the feast. Sharing stories and catching up with the family over a warm meal brings a smile to my face. After dinner, reading a book to the kids, and watching old movies with hot chocolate leaves everyone feeling blessed. Remember, every moment together is precious, and the most unexpected things shine brightest in our memories.
The Darke County Park District will be hosting two FREE family-friendly events. Friday, December 1st from 6pm-9pm we will have the Candlelight Walk Open House at Bear’s Mill, and Saturday, December 2nd 6pm-9pm you can come and enjoy Walkin’ in a Winter Wonderland Luminary Walk at Shawnee Prairie Preserve. Countless volunteer and park staff hours go into making these magical nights possible free of charge to the public. For more information visit www.darkecountparks.org. Come walk the luminary-lit trails, take a wagon ride through the candle-lit woods, and see all the fun and interactive displays. Grab some hot chocolate and gather around a campfire with family and friends.
Hope to see you all enjoying the great outdoors and have a great holiday season!