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Secret in Springfield

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The fairytale Hartman Rock Garden By Kevin Tucker Photo: Ben Hartman erected the ‘Tree of Life’ at the center of the Hartman Rock Garden in Springfield; photo: Rod Hatfield The Hartman Rock Garden (HRG) can be easily overlooked as it stands stoically behind one of the many nondescript dwellings comprising the southwest Springfield neighborhood it calls […]

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Human nature

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Discover Five Rivers MetroParks conservation areas By Kristen Wicker Photo: MetroParks staff members built the 1,800-foot boardwalk winding through Woodman Fen with recycled plastic; photo courtesy of MetroParks Human activity nearly destroyed Woodman Fen, but human intervention saved it. At one time common in southwest Ohio, fens have rich peat soils fed by underground water. […]

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Home away from home

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Camping closer to your backyard By Kristen Wicker Unplugging from electronics and plugging into nature was Baxter Foskuhl’s idea of getting wild during spring break. Foskuhl, a junior at Wright State University, hiked the Twin Valley Trail with a friend he’s known since elementary school during a respite from textbooks and lectures in late February. […]

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Dig it

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Turn your thumb green with MetroParks’ gardening programs Kristen Wicker For Carla and Scott Lachecki, who live in an urban Dayton neighborhood without much of a yard, renting a year-round community garden plot at Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark allows them to grow their own produce and share the natural world with their 3-year-old granddaughter, June. “It’s […]

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MOX rocks

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Midwest Outdoor Experience gets meaner, greener By Josher Lumpkin Photo: Midwest Outdoor Experience features a number of available activities including kayaking. MOX takes place Oct. 2 and 3 at Eastwood MetroPark This weekend, one of Dayton’s most anticipated annual events will take place, ushering all of us outdoor enthusiasts into the fall season. I’m talking about […]

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Trail mix

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Take a hike in “Trail Town” Dayton By Kristen Wicker Photo: Local hiking enthusiast Andy Niekamp begins his through-hike of the Buckeye Trail at Deed’s Point From downtown Dayton, you can walk to North Dakota. Or Vermont. That’s because the Dayton region is home to a portion of the North Country Trail—a 4,600-mile National Scenic […]

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Prairie of the past

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Huffman Prairie State Natural Landmark gets a new coat of paint Kristen Wicker Photo: A group tours through Huffman Prairie, a 112-acre natural landmark with significant historical and ecological relevance A hidden Dayton gem has a new shine: The addition of interpretive signage, brochures and programs at the historical Huffman Prairie State Natural Landmark has […]

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Rollin’ on the river

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Paddle Miami Valley Kristen Wicker Photo: Young adventurers try canoeing at a recent Try Paddlesports program at Eastwood MetroPark Southeast Ohio is home to a bountiful network of rivers and streams, including nearly 300 miles along three state-designated water trails: the Mad, Stillwater and Great Miami rivers. Mid-summer can be a great time to get […]

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Get the dirt

An insider’s guide to exploring your MetroParks By Kristen Wicker Photo: The tucked-away Sunderland Falls is located at the edge of a Vandalia neighborhood With nearly 16,000 acres of land, 160 miles of managed trails for the likes of hiking and mountain biking and 270 miles of river corridor, there’s plenty to discover in your […]

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For the birds

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Five Rivers MetroParks’ Bird Brigade By Kristen Wicker Photo: Members of the Five Rivers MetroParks Bird Brigade monitor migrating bird species at the Great Miami River Wetland Mitigation Bank Bullying is for the birds. Take, for example, a recent early-morning scene at the Great Miami River Wetland Mitigation Bank: A juvenile red-tailed hawk swoops out […]

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Debate Forum: 8/23

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For rent Can Ohio’s national park be “leased” for drilling? By Sarah Sidlow Quick quiz: name the only national forest […]

On The Beat: 8/23

Roadside fruit stands, where art thou? By Jim Bucher Think the older you get, the more nostalgic. Guess it’s all […]

On Your Marc: 8/23

No character like McVie By Marc Katz I know, there were iconic entertainment groups that played early in their careers […]

Debate Forum: 8/16/16

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For the love of the game Olympic athletes have big dreams, but empty wallets—Should the government step in? By Sarah […]

Debate Forum: 7/19/16

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Sit down, G.I. Jane Should women be blocked from registering for the draft? By Sarah Sidlow U.S. Rep. Warren Davidson […]