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Gift Guide to Explore Your Local Parks

 

Last year we bought our girls scooters for the holiday season, which seemed a little crazy in the middle of winter, but the first day of spring was not too far away and we were ready to try out the Skatepark in Plainfield. 

With all of the amazing, FREE  and low- cost opportunities our local parks give us, we wanted to compile a list of possible gifts for all ages, seasons, and budgets to help you get the most out of our local parks in Hendricks County. 

If you shop with Amazon, please use smile.amazon.com and select Parks Foundation of Hendricks County as your nonprofit to give back to. Your donation will help us add even more amenities to our parks and park programs. Thank you!

To see a list of parks in Hendricks County, Banning Engineering has compiled one for us here: https://banning.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapJournal/index.html?appid=cc2633008c584f16a7c9978947eb34ee

 

    1. Scooter, skateboard, inline skates, roller skates
      Anderson Park, Plainfield
      We were surprised to find this skate park has many elements for all skating levels. 
    2. Sled or snow tube
      Ellis Park, Danville
      Washington Township Park, Avon
      Hummel Park, Plainfield
      Our friends at Visit Hendricks County have a great blog post about this with details. 
    3. Hiking boots or hiking stick
      All of our parks have wonderful trail systems. If you would like to try some unpaved trails, head to McCloud Nature Park, Sodalis Nature Park, Pecar Park,  Blanton Woods, Washington Township Park, Arbuckle Acres, or Williams Park.  
    4. Donation to Parks Foundation of Hendricks County
      Consider a meaningful gift to the park lover in your family, friend or coworker. We fund projects all over the county to enhance the experiences at our local parks. https://pfohc.org/donate/ We’ll even send them this sticker to proudly display.  
    5. Things to Explore
      Give a gift that encourages exploring a new park or seeing your neighborhood park in a different way! Some ideas are Binoculars, Geocaching Kit, Bird, Tree, or Wildlife Guide, Camera, Walkie Talkies, Backpack, and Nature journal. 
    6. Fishing Pole and Tackle
      There are many great spots for catch-and-release fishing at our local parks. Some favorites are Avon Town Hall Park, Sodalis Nature Park, Pecar Park, Hummel Park, and McCloud Nature Park.  In June, many parks host a free fishing day for kids! Find more information about fishing rules on the DNR website: https://www.in.gov/dnr/fishwild/2348.htm
    7. Remote Controlled Car
      Did you know Avon Town Hall Park hosts an RC Track? My husband has already added  RC cars to our girls’ lists this year. Shhh, don’t tell them.
    8.  GoPro (or generic version)
      Have an aspiring YouTuber in your family? A GoPro camera is durable for those trail hikes and can even get wet while creek stomping at many of our parks. It’s a great way to gift them technology that gets them outside exploring!
    9. Telescope
      We love this idea for many ages, but especially teens and adults. It also makes a great gift to enjoy free Astronomy nights at McCloud Nature Park and Pecar Park held throughout the year.
    10. Sleeping bag, tent, backpack
      With Pecar Park opening this year, so did camping opportunities! Memorial Day through Labor Day you can tent camp right here in Hendricks County. This park also has a nature center, playground, hiking trails, and fishing. 
      Also, McCloud Nature Park hosts a Family Campout once a year with naturalist-led activities. 

 What would you add to this list? We hope this encourages you to give gifts that get people out into our parks all year long. 

Summer Fun Run Series 2019-Registration Now Open

 

The Parks Foundation of Hendricks County has partnered with your local park departments to give you an active tour of trails inside Hendricks County. No matter what your athletic ability, this series is for you! We’ve made a few changes to allow the community to give back to the parks that give us so much all year long.

Here are the details:

* All events are free to participant

* Shirts will be available to purchase as supplies last.

* Kick-Off Expo and Pasta Dinner:
May 29th at HC Fairgrounds and Week 1 of the series.
Register by May 15 and pick up your shirt at the Expo. Attendees will get information about our local parks and sponsors, and enjoy a free pasta dinner. (for first 500 people in attendance) You’ll also find a one-mile path for running and walking around the fairgrounds. Shirts will also be available to purchase at expo while supplies last.

* 2019 Online Registration is required:
https://secure.getmeregistered.com/register.php?event_id=132288&c=69471_677467&mask=69472

Simply register online then check-in each week at the park. Those who attend 9/12 events will get their name listed on our website AND printed on the 2020 SFR adult shirts.

* Longer check-in hours!
During each event you will be able to check in anytime between 4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. This means you can even start at 6:59 p.m. if you like.

* Each park will have a one-mile course and an additional course to be determined by the park host. The second distance will vary with each site. This is to help with the flow of these very popular events!

Fall Colors Run 2018

2016 Fall Colors Run Logo - color

    5K or 1-Mile

 A scenic trail run on the banks of the Big Walnut Creek during the peak of fall colors

October 20, 2018, at 9 AM

McCloud Nature Park

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  – Color changing water bottle for All Finishers

      – BonFire and Refreshments

– Packet pick-up between 8-8:30 AM

-Families Run for Only $60 

Please note this race is not professionally timed, but a volunteer will help you with finish time as needed

      – Stick Around for Fall Fun after the Run – McCloud Fall Colors Festival & Prairie Maze

          – Your Run Improves our Hendricks County Parks.  Thank you!

IMG_1917

Online Registration 

Our Partners supporting a Natural Hendricks County!

Hendricks Regional Health
Banning Engineering

 

 

 

McCloud_Park_Run_1Mile_mapMcCloud_Park_Run_5K map

 

Become a Friend of the Parks Foundation of Hendricks County

Chances are you and your family have benefited from a Hendricks County Park, program, event or amenity. We are often asked the best way to give appreciation for having access to these natural spaces and education so we have created an easy way to show your support- become a “Friend” of the Parks Foundation of Hendricks County. 

The Foundation assists Hendricks County Parks and Recreation in projects, long-term planning, and events like the Summer Fun Run Series and Fall Colors Festival to ensure natural spaces and outdoor recreation for all our residents. Our next big project is Phase 1 of W.S. Gibbs Memorial Park in Washington Township. 

To become a friend, you can find us at a Hendricks County Parks and Recreation event, pick up a form at the McCloud Nature Park Nature Center or make a donation online. 

Friends commit to giving $10 or more a month or a make a one-time donation of $100 or more per year. To become a Friend online, head to our donation page. Then select the amount you would like to give. In the box “I would like to designate this to a certain fund”, select “Friend of PFOHC” and then click monthly if you choose or leave box unclicked for a one-time donation. 

Friends will be recognized on our website, get invited to Foundation events and feel pride in knowing their donation is helping local natural spaces for generations to enjoy. 

Thank you for joining us in supporting your Hendricks County Parks and Recreation!

Let’s Build a Park Together!

As we look ahead to 2018, we are most excited about helping Hendricks County Parks & Recreation break ground on a new park- W.S. Gibbs Memorial Park. A master plan includes a bicycle obstacle course, nature playground, shelter, bathrooms, hiking trails, community garden and more. 

W.S. Gibbs is located off Gibbs Road between 200 S and 350 S making it the county’s most centrally-located park! 

More information about the park can be found on the Hendricks County Parks and Recreation website

To contribute to the park, you can make a one-time donation or recurring sponsorship here

Thank you for supporting our local natural spaces!