by Sandy Grigsby
Originally published in the Chillicothe Gazette, May 29, 2022
As temperatures warmed this spring, many Ross County residents have enjoyed the milder weather in the great outdoors. Folks can view spring wildflowers, greening leaves, birds and other wildlife around Ross and neighboring counties.
Some of my favorite places to see the beauty of nature are in the Hocking Hills, at state parks, in Arc of Appalachia preserves, on area trails and even while using our local bike paths. As the weather continues to heat up, now is a wonderful time to get out on a bicycle and feel the breeze blow through your hair. Biking is a fun activity that builds strength, tones muscle, and burns calories, leaving you with the satisfaction of having done something good for yourself. If you are looking for something low-impact that can also be turned into an aerobic workout, biking is a good way to go. Just be sure to ease your way into distance and speed as you would when beginning any new physical activity.
The Chillicothe and Ross County Public Library, in conjunction with YMCA of Ross County, Ross County Health District and Chillicothe Transit System, has implemented a bicycle-lending program called Book-A-Bike. The lending program is part of a larger initiative to promote fun, healthy activities for area residents. This program allows area residents the opportunity to borrow a bicycle for two hours, free of charge.
Bikes may be checked out from the Main Library on Paint Street, the Chillicothe City Transit station, the Ross County Health Department, or the YMCA. All you need is your full-access library card in good standing and a photo ID (if we do not yet have your photo on your library account). Ohio residents may get a Chillicothe & Ross County Public Library card by bringing their photo ID and proof of address to any CRCPL location. Bike helmets are required for all bicycle borrowers, and – GOOD NEWS – the library has helmets available for check out, too. If you want to see if bicycling is for you, the Book a Bike program will allow you to test the waters without the cost of purchasing a bicycle.
Your library also has other recreational items available. Would you like to go camping? Check out our 4-person tent. Kids need a fun activity? Why not give our play parachute a try? Want to view wildlife? We have binoculars. Have you tried disc golf in Yoctangee Park? The library has a disc golf set. Other outdoor supplies you might like to try include a fishing pole, and an inflatable paddleboard. For a complete list of items in our Beyond Books collection, please take a look at the following page on our website: www.crcpl.org/beyondbooks/
Get outside for sunshine, exercise and have some fun! Enjoy!
Sandy Grigsby is an Enrichment Clerk at the Main Library, and enjoys bike-riding and experiencing nature on the bike trails around the State of Ohio.