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Gearing up to enjoy our natural surroundings

The first day of summer has come and gone, and the warmer weather has stirred up some fond memories of long days enjoying seasonal heat with a cold popsicle.

As a child, I used to enjoy going to watch my older brother play baseball for his little league team, The Mets. I can still hear the echo of the steel bats knocking against those heavy baseballs, followed by the wild roar of the crowd cheering as the boys wearing bright orange shirts with blue writing ran across the field.

While I was a supportive little sister who wanted her brother to win, I quickly grew weary of the game and the constant sitting on the familiar but uncomfortable gray bleachers. It wouldn’t be long into the first inning that I would find the playground over the hill calling my name.

Sadly for several years, younger visitors of Sim’s Ball Park have not had the luxury of a playground to keep them entertained during baseball games.

Thanks to the support of community members and local businesses, within the next week, Sim’s Ball Park will have new slides, swings, a toddler play-education area, four square, ten spin and a fitness unit.

I believe it is so important for the young, old and everyone in between to get outside and be as active as possible. This addition to the ballpark will help encourage that even more.

I personally really enjoy being in nature, and around this time of year, I feel the strong urge to be among the fresh air, with the sights and sounds that you can only experience under a canopy of trees in a place where cell phones can’t even fathom working.

When I worked at The Clay City Times, I had the enjoyment of being a stone’s throw away from some of the most beautiful nature getaways, including some of the best known in Kentucky, the Red River Gorge and Natural Bridge.

One of my favorite things to do after a long hike at the gorge is to indulge in the refreshing spring water that flows from a black pipe sticking out of the rocks.

When I moved to the cityscape of Nicholasville, I feared that I would be severely lacking in that natural environment and all the wonderful things that came with it.

I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Jessamine County houses several trails and primitive areas for those seeking nature.

Some of these places include Raven Run Nature Sanctuary, Jessamine Creek Gorge Preserve, Dupree Nature Preserve and Jim Beam Nature Preserve.

A list of other trails in Jessamine County can be found on the Jessamine County Trails Association’s recently developed website, jessaminetrails.com.

Many of these wondrous places will be featured in a picturesque section of our upcoming Summer 2017 edition of Jessamine Life.

A day of capturing the beauty of nature and being immersed in a variety of landscapes isn’t worked, it’s field trip out of the office that I gladly volunteered to take.