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species makes it fun to enjoy. The five miles of trails include areas great for biking and families as well as wetlands and eskers that only allow for foot traffic. The park has two entrances, one on
the north side, and a second on the southern side. Both parking lots contain a sign, kiosk, and bike rack.
An interactive map of the county parks can be found by visiting the county web- site at calhouncountymi.gov and clicking on the “Departments” button. Scroll down to Parks and Recreation and off you go on an outdoor adventure.
Outdoor activities can be made even more fun with your furry friends. Bring- ing them along can encourage a little extra movement for you and valuable movement for them. While you can walk them in your neighborhood and a variety of community locations such as Leila Arboretum we are lucky to have several options designed just for their needs. Just be sure to be courteous and clean up behind them.
The Home Run Dog Park is a rela- tively new addition to Battle Creek and was developed to create safe spaces for dogs to play and the community to
gather. It became a reality because of the hard work of a committed group of volunteers. It is located on Roosevelt near Bailey Park and has a host of rules that are important to continued enjoyment and safety in this beautiful, well-maintained space that is open
to dogs, dog lovers, and friends. Visit homerundogpark.com to learn what’s important to bring as well as what’s important to leave at home.
Another place to take your furry friends is Curtis Whitaker Dog Park. The park is free and open to the public. It is located on Watkins Road adjacent to the Humane Society of South Central Michigan and features a large fenced-in area for dogs to run and play off-leash, a bone-shaped pool for summer fun, and walking trails to enjoy with your canine friends on-leash. To get started you must submit an appli- cation that you can find online at hsscm. org. You will also be asked to submit a copy of up-to-date vaccinations.
Getting outside after a long winter of being cooped up is far more important than just enjoying the warm weather and beautiful summer nights, it’s healthy. Fresh air and vitamin D from the sun
create a powerhouse of punch for the immune system by helping to activate our body’s ability to detect and destroy foreign pathogens and viruses.
Enjoying nature by visiting a park, the woods, or the beach can also increase energy levels. Surprisingly, it only takes about 20 minutes of being outside in na- ture, inhaling fresh air every day, to boost vitality, stamina, and immunity significant- ly. If you’re feeling sluggish, you might want to head outside for 20 minutes.
Part two of the powerhouse equation is vitamin D. There are several ways to enhance vitamin D; exposure to sunlight is one of the easiest, especially in the summertime. The amount needed varies by person but generally 15 minutes is sufficient to begin vitamin D production.
Let this summer be a time when you enjoy our community by being out in the fresh air. You will benefit from the move- ment, improved energy levels, vitamin
D production, and enhanced immune system response. All of these can add up for a healthier you.
If you need inspiration, a dog can be your best friend; they always need to get outside. So grab a leash and get moving.
SUMMER DESTINATIONS! I SCENE 4605 21
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