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Take A Hike: Kansas State Parks Offering Guided Hikes On New Year's Day

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Courtesy: Kansas Wildlife, Parks and Tourism
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More than 20 Kansas state parks will offer free guided hikes on New Year's Day, including Fall River in Greenwood County.

State parks across Kansas will participate in the annual First Day Hike Event in which people are invited to hike on New Year’s Day.

Twenty-one Kansas state parks are taking part in the national event and will host free guided hikes this year.

Linda Lanterman is the director of the Parks division of the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks, and Tourism. She says the goal of the event is to encourage healthy lifestyles by getting people outside.

“And we try to take advantage of New Year's Day because so many people look at that as, ‘I’m going to make a change — I’m going to make this year better,’ ” Lanterman says.

According to Lanterman, Wildlife and Parks has statistics that show people who participate in the First Day Hike event are much more likely to visit state parks throughout the year than those who do not attend.

Lanterman also says the event gives people who haven’t been to a state park before a reason to check out the parks.

While the guided hikes are free, people will still need vehicle permits to access the parks. Free T-shirts and hot chocolate will be provided.

People should dress appropriately for being outside for a long period of time.

Participating Kansas state parks include:

  • Cheney State Park — Meet at the park office at 2 p.m. for a 1.5-mile hike
  • El Dorado State Park — Meet at the Walnut River Cabins at 1 p.m. for a two-mile hike
  • Fall River State Park — Meet at the Fall River maintenance shop at 2 p.m. for a three-quarter of a mile hike

For more information and a complete list of locations, go to the Wildlife and Parks website.

Mya Acosta is an intern in the KMUW News Lab.