By Senator Patty Ritchie
The month of April may have left you believing that summer is a long way off.
Soon, hopefully, though, we will be able to start enjoying the outdoors, as well as the warm weather.
In those travels, I hope you will be able to visit some of our local state parks.
Whether it is a walking trail, a calm fishing spot or a sandy beach, our state parks provide some of the best outdoor recreation New York State has to offer.
Across the state, these parks are getting ready for the millions of visitors expected to soon enjoy them, and you can play a role in helping them be the very best they can be.
On May 5, for the third year in a row, New York State is celebrating “I Love My Park Day.”
The annual effort is organized by the non-profit group Parks & Trails New York, along with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.
Last year, more than 8,000 volunteers teamed up with the New York State Department of Environmental Conversation, the National Park Service and other agencies to take part in more than 250 cleanup and restoration projects at 125 state parks, public lands and historic places.
The hope is grow this event even further this year, with activities planned for even more areas across the state.
This includes a number of events taking place in our region, at the following locations:
Fort Ontario State Historic Site
Black River Trail
Higley Flow State Park
Lakeview Wildlife Management Area
Minna Anthony Common Nature Center
Robert Moses State Park – Thousand Islands
If you enjoy visiting a state park near you, the pride of helping make sure it is ready for the summer can be special.
To learn more about “I Love My Park Day” and to sign up for a project, I encourage you to visit my website at www.ritchie.nysenate.gov.