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Opened in 1948, Blacklick Woods was the first Metro Park in the county. Back then, Reynoldsburg was a small town with likely no idea of the strip malls, housing developments or commercial drive that would connect it to the big city.

Blacklick is a small park, but a good one. It has resisted the sprawl lapping constantly at its borders, and it provides 643 acres of surprisingly dense woods so close to shopping malls, large interstates and a golf course.

Blacklick Woods Metro Park 6975 E. Livingston Ave., Reynoldsburg 614-891-0700 Homepage

View larger image White-tail deer wander around a small pond just beyond the window of the nature center at the park's south end.

View larger image The nature center houses some cool wildlife displays and some outdoor feeders, where naturalists do regular bird counts.

View larger image Likely because of its proximity to where people live and work, Blacklick is among the most popular Metro Parks. You won't be lonely long the three main nature trails or the multi-use path.

View larger image The three nature trails total just more than two miles, so I'd suggest doing everything. It's easy going, but the swamp forest sections of the Buttonbush Trail get buggy. Spray accordingly.