From snowshoeing ... to a winter beach party
Just because it’s winter it doesn’t mean you have to hibernate. I found some activities available anyone can do at a Three Rivers Park near you. That includes the 14th annual Winter Beach Party at Eastman Nature Center.

"It gives people an opportunity to come out and enjoy some summertime activities inside the Nature Center," said Three Rivers naturalist Vicky Wachtler. "We have some sand pools where the kids can take some time to dig around in the sand play a little bit. We also have our minnow races where they get a chance to race a minnow down the tube."

Snowshoeing at French Regional Park

Besides the beach fun at Eastman, there are cross country ski trails and snowshoeing, which brings me to French Regional Park where they are hosting a beginning snowshoe class Saturday morning.

"French Regional Park in Plymouth, Minnesota just started renting snowshoes this week actually, so for $5 you can come out rent snowshoes if you'd like to just give it a go," said Alex McKinney, recreation supervisor with the Three Rivers Park District.

While you can walk just about everywhere you can snowshoe, the snowshoes do make it a little easier in really deep snow.

"These are designed to help you float in the snow," said McKinney. "They don't sit on top of the snow. I think that's a common misconception, 'I'm going snowshoeing, so I'm going to be on top of the snow,' this will sink down into the snow. It just disperses your weight a little more. So if you go snowshoeing you're definitely want to have winter boots, waterproof boots."

The Winter Beach Party at Eastman Nature Center is from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday and Beginning Snowshoeing Class is at French Regional Park Saturday from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. For a complete list of offerings, go to Threeriversparks.org

Neil Pursley reporting



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