COLUMBUS, OH – The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) has approved more than $4.4 million in project funding through the NatureWorks grant program, which will be used to improve outdoor recreational opportunities for Ohioans across the state.
“The NatureWorks grant program has been allowing ODNR to invest back into Ohio’s local communities for 25 years,” said ODNR Director Jim Zehringer. “We believe it is important to encourage people to spend time outdoors doing recreational activities they enjoy with the people they care about here in Ohio.”
ODNR has approved 102 NatureWorks state grants totaling more than $4.4 million that will be used to develop and improve public access for outdoor recreation facilities in 68 counties across Ohio. Projects include many new playgrounds that will replace outdated playgrounds, new picnic shelters, renovations to existing shelters, trails, trailheads, restrooms, baseball fields, basketball courts, amphitheaters and outdoor stages, fishing piers, kayak launches and much more.
NatureWorks provides up to 75 percent reimbursement assistance to local subdivisions of government (townships, villages, cities, counties, park districts, joint recreation districts and conservancy districts) for the acquisition, development and rehabilitation of recreational areas. The projects are funded through the Ohio Parks and Natural Resources Bond Issue, which was approved by Ohioans in November 1993. Additional legislation authorized the creation of the NatureWorks Grant Program.
To see which local Ohio communities will receive grant funding, go to realestate.ohiodnr.gov/outdoor-recreation-facility-grants.
County, Applicant Agency, Project Title, Proposal, Recommended AWARD
Delaware, Preservation Parks of Delaware County, Char-Mar Ridge Park, Driveway Paving, Pave park entrance drive. $37,878
Winter program guides available
The Preservation Parks of Delaware County guide to winter programs and events will be available by November 9 in all district parks, at the three county chambers of commerce, Destination Delaware County Ohio, all Delaware County libraries, and the Delaware and Powell YMCAs. It also is available online now at preservationparks.com.
The guide highlights nearly 40 nature and farm programs that will be held in the parks during the months of December, January and February. Most programs are free to the public and require no advance registration; some have age restrictions, a registration deadline or a fee.
Program registration will open Nov. 15 and can be completed by following the RSVP instructions below program listings in the program calendar on preservationpark.com. Registration programs include Homeschool Adventures on Jan. 8 and Feb. 12, Steps to Sustainability on Jan. 6, Learn to Crochet Series starting Jan. 17, Native American Flute Lesson on Jan. 27 and the Build a Bluebird Box Workshops on Feb. 13 and 20.
For more information or to receive a guide in the mail, call 740-524-8600, ext. 5.
Preservation Parks briefs
For more information on parks and programs, visit www.preservationparks.com. Those with questions may call 740-524-8600, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Registration is not required for the following free program.
• Saturday, November 17, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and Sunday, November 18, 12-4 p.m. All Aboard for Railroad Fun. Join us at the Sandel Legacy Trail house for this model railroad open house.
Watch the model trains (HO scale) travel through a miniature village and countryside, and learn about railroading in America. Sandel Legacy Trail, 168 S. Vernon Street, Sunbury. Free; all ages.
• Sunday, Nov. 18, 1-3 p.m. Public open house to provide information on potential new hiking trails in the southern section of Shale Hollow Park. 6320 Artesian Run, Lewis Center.
• Monday, November 19, 10 a.m. Story Time in the Park. Join staff from the Delaware County District Library as they read about friendship, then take part in an activity or a craft. A short nature walk will be offered afterward. Free, ages 0-5 with an adult. Deer Haven Park, 4183 Liberty Road, Delaware.
• Monday, November 19, 6:30 p.m. Delaware County Bird Club: Eagles of Panhandle Road. Anyone interested in birds is welcome to attend this Delaware County Bird Club meeting. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and at 7 p.m.
Speaker Chet Snouffer will discuss the eagles along Panhandle Road and 22 years of watching “Patch” and her nest. Free, all ages. Deer Haven Park, 4183 Liberty Road, Delaware.
The next phase of the Ohio to Erie Trail extension north of Holmes St. in Galena has been paved. Landscaping, striping, and signs will be completed soon.
Delaware County Friends of the Trail (DCFT) held their October meeting at the Galena Village Hall. Ohio to Erie Trail Fund Executive Coordinator Lisa Daris gave an overview of the statewide progress on the Ohio to Erie Trail. DCFT, Preservation Parks of Delaware County, and representatives from Galena, Sunbury, Centerburg, and Knox County updated everyone on progress in their communities as well.
ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.