To the editor:
My calendar has informed me of the official beginning of this refreshing season, although I've felt it outside for a few weeks now. As a Floridian, I know spring will be short but it will also be time to break out of your everyday routine, release some stress, get out of the office and experience nature in Florida's state parks.
Take the time this season to experience nature with all five of your senses - seeing Florida's vistas, smelling newly bloomed flowers, feeling the sand between your toes, hearing the sounds of children playing and tasting the treats of your picnic basket in a state park. Spring is an optimum season to engross yourself in the natural and cultural resources of Florida's state parks. There are so many opportunities for new experiences and the special places to continue your old family traditions.
Sometimes it is a hike in the forest, a walk on the beach, building sand castles with your kids, watching a sunrise or a sunset, grilling lunch under a big oak tree, looking for a bird species to add to your life list or paddling your canoe on a long stretch of river. It's about immersion, surrounding yourself with nature and coming away with a renewed appreciation for Florida's splendor. Sometimes you need a slow, relaxing experience, while sometime you might prefer a fast, exhilarating experience.
I encourage you to spend time in Florida's award-winning state parks this season. Savor the atmosphere of spring and enjoy the Sunshine State in the Real Florida.
Donald V. Forgione
Florida Park Service