Listening to nature’s music

Today’s post comes from Kyra Santin, a Natural Heritage Education and Marketing Student from our Northwest Zone. George Santayana — poet, philosopher and naturalist — said, “The Earth has music for those who listen.”

The earth holds a lot of beauty within it. If we open our eyes and ears, and listen to the world that surrounds us, we can truly appreciate the music the earth is making.

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How to keep your brain healthy this summer

Summer is without a doubt the best time to get outside and play. There’s so much to do like hiking, cycling, or paddling.

It is also the perfect time to take charge of our brain health. We often hear that being active is great for our heart and muscles, but let’s not forget what it can do for our brain. Exercise helps protect our brain cells and encourages the growth of new ones by boosting levels of growth factors called neurotrophins.

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Connecting new Canadians to the outdoors with NatureLink

At Ontario Parks, we believe that nature is for everybody.

In honour of Healthy Parks Healthy People, we wanted to create opportunities for new audiences to experience the amazing natural spaces in Ontario.

That’s why we partnered with Parkbus to offer two NatureLink programs on this year’s free day (July 20, 2018). Here is the story of how two groups of new Canadians got to experience Ontario Parks for the very first time.

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Get outside with ActiveDays

This blog post comes from Walker Kitchens, coordinator of the ActiveDays program. 

Are you taking the 30×30 Challenge this August? Need a way to get your nature time in?

In honour of the challenge, Parkbus is offering three ActiveDays throughout the month of August to get you moving in the outdoors.

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The 30×30 Challenge is good for you

Today’s post comes from Sarah McMichael, Ontario Parks’ Healthy Parks Healthy People Coordinator.

We all know that fresh air is good for us, right?

Time in nature has been proven to lead to better sleep, improved productivity, lower stress, increased self-esteem, better mood, lower blood pressure, a stronger immune system, and a lower risk of diabetes and heart attack. The research is clear: spending time in nature improves our physical, mental, and social well-being.

Imagine how much your health and happiness could improve if you spent quality time outdoors every day for a whole month. This is what the 30×30 Challenge is all about. Sounds like a great way to get healthy!

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Finding our place in the wild

Today’s post comes from Heather Greenwood Davis, a travel writer and new camper. 

We forgot the kettle. For real campers, it wouldn’t be a big deal. Real campers would know how to build a fire; real campers would’ve thought to bring a pot.

But I’m not a real camper and I am a coffee lover, so this could’ve been a problem.

Luckily, I know enough about my strengths and weaknesses to have arranged to spend this camping experience in one of the roofed accommodations at Bonnechere Provincial Park. The perfect step between tent camping and a cottage stay, our log cabin offers the warmth and security of a roof and four walls, but only a few of the modern conveniences we’re used to.

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Health benefits of swimming

Whether you walk through the waves or jump off the dock, there’s no better way to cool off than going for a swim.

This summer, as you escape the sweltering heat in one of Ontario’s lakes, think about these head-to-toe benefits your body is receiving from that dip:

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Barrier-free Bonnechere

Highlights of a trip to Bonnechere Provincial Park often include visiting the beach and taking a dip in the sparkling waters of Round Lake.

Until recently, enjoying these and other activities in the park could be challenging for those using a wheelchair or walker.

This past year, as part of Ontario Parks’ commitment to making our parks as accessible as possible, Bonnechere staff surveyed the park and after identifying potential barriers, put together a plan to remove them.     Continue reading Barrier-free Bonnechere

Keep your child’s asthma under control this summer

Summer’s here, bringing with it camping getaways, family hikes, and playing outdoors all day long. But if your child suffers from asthma, keeping it under control during the summer months is necessary to ensure they have a safe and active break from school.

Planning ahead and taking precautions helps to reduce their risks. Beware of summer asthma triggers such as pets, food allergens, campfire smoke, air pollution, mould in the forest, and dust and mould in tent or trailer. Remember that air quality on vacation not be as easy to monitor as it can be at home.

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