Birds take flight at Blendon Woods Metro Park

Blendon Woods Metro Park

Last Sunday, when the sun finally appeared, I took a nice, muddy stroll through this North Side park. The trees were bare, and the brown, leafy forest floor gave the feeling of fall, but this is a great place for a nice afternoon outside.

Also, it's the best Metro Park I've found for bird-watching. I'm not a big birder, but even I spotted numerous species - goose, sparrow, jay and warbler. In fact, the park is famous for its warbler populations, and the board near the Nature Center pictures many that are regularly seen in the park. Those include the Magnolia, Common Yellowthroat, Hooded and American Redstart.

Come rain or shine, since the Waterfowl Refuge - a sprawling lake with much bird-friendly habitat - offers two indoor viewing rooms. Situated directly on the pristine lake, each offers a cozy place to peep the interactions outside.

Also, for those who enjoy walking through meadows - they are often overlooked - take the two-mile Sugarbush Trail. Disc golfers can play on a 3,500-foot, 18-hole course.

For directions, trails, park info, click here.

Find out about the city's clean river campaign, some Earth Day festivities and upcoming Metro Park events inside!

Birds take flight at Blendon Woods Metro Park

Blendon Woods Metro Park

Last Sunday, when the sun finally appeared, I took a nice, muddy stroll through this North Side park. The trees were bare, and the brown, leafy forest floor gave the feeling of fall, but this is a great place for a nice afternoon outside.

Also, it's the best Metro Park I've found for bird-watching. I'm not a big birder, but even I spotted numerous species - goose, sparrow, jay and warbler. In fact, the park is famous for its warbler populations, and the board near the Nature Center pictures many that are regularly seen in the park. Those include the Magnolia, Common Yellowthroat, Hooded and American Redstart.

Come rain or shine, since the Waterfowl Refuge - a sprawling lake with much bird-friendly habitat - offers two indoor viewing rooms. Situated directly on the pristine lake, each offers a cozy place to peep the interactions outside.

Also, for those who enjoy walking through meadows - they are often overlooked - take the two-mile Sugarbush Trail. Disc golfers can play on a 3,500-foot, 18-hole course.

For directions, trails, park info, click here.

Find out about the city's clean river campaign, some Earth Day festivities and upcoming Metro Park events inside!

Big Darby Creek, one of my favorite local waterways

Central Ohio River Pride Month

Mayor Michael Coleman is asking Columbus residents to join the Get Green team and “hit the streams” by volunteering to clean up trash during Central Ohio River Pride Month in May, which will remove tons of trash and litter from river and stream banks after the winter thaw.

River Pride Month is part of the Department of Public Utilities’ annual “We All Live Downstream” educational campaign to remind residents to not throw litter and hazardous waste into storm drains that then pollutes local waterways

The following groups are looking for volunteers for these cleanup events:

May 5, 9 a.m. Griggs Reservoir, Upper Arlington Department of Public Utilities, 614-645-1721

May 12, 9 a.m. Adena Brook, Clintonville Adena Brook Community, 614-262-8655

May 19, 9:30 a.m. Olentangy River, Worthington Friends of the Lower Olentangy Watershed, 614-267-3386

May 19, 9 a.m. Batelle Darby Creek Metro Park, Galloway Darby Creek Association, 614-562-8317 Community groups interested in planning their own cleanups should contact Keep Columbus Beautiful at 614-645-8027.

Many new activites offered at the Metro Parks

The city's main park system always offers a host of interesting programs that allow urban folk to interact with the nature that's around them. This year is no different.

These are some highlights:

April 22, Beavers in the Park: A look at the dam-builders who have returned to Blendon Woods.

April 28: Wildflower Wonders: This guided tour focuses on a two-mile stretch of Battelle Darby Creek flush with numerous wildflowers.

April 29, Geology of the Clear Creek Valley: Discover Ohio's geological history by viewing various rock formations within the park. The tour will stop at a prehistoric tropical seashore.

For more, click to the searchable, well organized Programs site here.