Category Archives: Inniswood Metro Park

In-Town Tourist: Splashes at Inniswood

Bridges, stream side trails, waterfalls: these are the elements that add fun to the merely beautiful.  Inniswood Metro Park has all of these as well as a farmyard water wheel and trough that are pure cooling recreation.  The truth is that none of us really outgrow the need to splash in water on a hot day.  Sultry summer weather = a beach vacation for many. We may have to settle for a fast fan or air conditioned office, but given the choice, I think most of us prefer to lean a little closer into a cooling spray.

Columbus Things To Do

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Just Add Water

Cooling down at Inniswood Metro Park
Cooling down at Inniswood Metro Park

Invariably, water is always the game changer.  The deciding factor.  The extra plus weighted into the yes column.  Almost any park or outdoor venue can be a good destination for my kids, but when you add water?  It becomes the better choice.

Our favorite hikes in southern Utah a couple of summers ago were the wet hikes.  Edging carefully up slate waterfalls and through canyon streams, swimming along the way in natural pools… those moist moments elevated extraordinary scenery into extraordinary experiences that grew us in new and delightfully freeing ways.  A shameless wordsmith might say that they saturated us with remarkable memories.

Even in frigid winter, we’re drawn to the frozen falls and iced over trails of the Hocking Hills in southern Ohio.  Maybe it’s that changeable aspect of water that invites us closer.  It’s duality fascinates us.   Eroding and building.  Freezing and thawing.  Ebbing and flowing. Changing the earth, changing itself.  All the while sending leaves, logs and rocks on whimsical journeys…

Columbus Things To Do

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In-Town Tourist: Inniswood Metro Park

“This is one of the regular parks?”  My daughter Hannah knows most of our area parks for their running trails and frisbee golf courses.  While we’ve wandered through Inniswood Metro Park many times, this was the first time my daughter had noticed metro on the entrance sign.

Most of our area parks here in central Ohio are geared to recreational activity:  hiking, running, biking, birdwatching, fishing and canoeing or kayaking.  Inniswood by contrast, sprawls with cultivated gardens, lush expanses of lawn and woods, and contains kid-friendly creative content such as a “secret garden”, a farm (with a watering trough to splash around in) and a tree house playground.  I always support our park funding at election time, and Inniswood is an inspiring example of tax dollars well spent.

A favored local destination, Inniswood’s nooks and niches have been the focus of many an afternoon’s exploration for us.  A few years ago my youngest son and I found some thrills catching and releasing frogs in one of the Inniswood ponds (until management posted a sign expressly forbidding the activity, oops…).  The secret garden, a quiet stone ruins splayed by twining vines and embedded with jeweled marbles, elicits both romance and mystery.  A story walk maze draws visitors from sentence to sentence, tile to tile, reading and walking to the legend’s end: a statued depiction of the story’s main characters.  The tree house playground includes an elevated walkway with swaying bridges and, of course, a tree house for children and very small(!) adults to explore.

Always familiar but ever changing from one season’s colors into the next, Inniswood Metro Park is a  year round festival of nature.  There’s nothing regular about it at all.

Columbus Things To Do

Coming up:  Kid friendly fun at Inniswood, Drifting down the Colorado River in Glen Canyon, Boston, Frank Lloyd Wright designs in Ohio…

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