America’s State Parks First Day Hikes

America’s State Parks announced that all 50 state park systems will sponsor guided First Day Hike Programs on New Year’s Day 2013. America’s State Parks First Day Hikes offer individuals and families an opportunity to begin the New Year rejuvenating and connecting with the outdoors by taking a healthy hike on January 1, 2013 at a state park. First Day Hikes offer a great way to get outside, exercise, enjoy nature and welcome the New Year with friends and family. Currently there are 657 First Day Hikes.

Click here to find a first day hike near you.

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Walkway Over the Hudson is again participating. This will be the Walkway’s “2nd Annual First Day Walk”. Come and join the new tradition:

Date and Time: Tuesday, January 1, 2013 at 2:00 p.m.
What: 1.2 or 2.4 mile, guided, group hike on the Walkway Over the Hudson
Begin: Meet at either west or east entrance of the Walkway, where Walkway volunteers will lead group walk over Walkway and back. See below for more details and directions.
Cost: FREE except you must smile, be friendly and courteous to other users of the Walkway.
Registration & more info: Contact Fred Schaeffer at or call 845-454-1190 or cell phone at 845-518-6071 – leave name and contact information.
Prizes: All participants have a chance to win an New York State Empire Pass (entitles winner to  free parking for one year at all state parks, including Walkway). Raffle will be at the center overlook of the Walkway during the hike. There will be additional prizes raffled off too – see below.
Background: This is a national program to begin the New Year by connecting with the outdoors by taking a healthy hike on January 1, 2013 at a state, national or local park. It encourages families to do a fun walk for exercise, connect with nature and meet their neighbors, and, of course,  enjoy the spectacular view of the Hudson River Valley from the Walkway.
Icy Condition Update: Weather forecast is good but icy conditions on the Walkway could cause postponement to a later date. Call 845-454-1190 after 10 a.m. on Tuesday, January 1, 2012 to verify Walkway is open and obtain postponement information if not open.
More information:
* Distance Options:  Walkers can either walk out as a group to the center of the Walkway for the raffle and then return with the group to where they began (this is 1.2 mile option) or walkers can continue to opposite side of the Walkway and then back (this is 2.4 mile option).
* Donate a Prize: If you would like to donate a prize call Fred at 845-454-1190. Will give businesses publicity in exchange for donation.
* Set a Record: Walkway hopes to lead the country in participants so we will take a group photo at the center overlook. We have no doubt we will have the most participants in New York State but some areas of the country don’t have to deal with cold weather. We will be submitting photo to those in charge of this initiative.
* Smiling and Greeting Your Neighbors is a Walkway tradition. So come prepared to help make the Walkway the friendliest park in the country.
* Directions to the Walkway or New York State Parks website

* Dress Warmly

About Norma Chang

I am the author/publisher of 2 user-friendly Chinese cookbooks: "My Students' Favorite Chinese Recipes (updated edition)" and "Wokking Your Way to Low Fat Cooking" A gardener who enjoys cooking and eating and loves to think outside the box A garden volunteer at Locust Grove Heritage Vegetable Garden Conduct hands-on cooking workshops for teenagers Conduct cultural programs for children and family Conduct healthy cooking classes for adults
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23 Responses to America’s State Parks First Day Hikes

  1. Kristy says:

    What a great idea! I love this Norma. Thank you for sharing this! I’ll see if there’s one where we will be. 🙂

  2. It sounds like fun! I did not take a part in it but I did hike on the 1st of January twice during the past 3 years 🙂 It was fun. I’m glad you take part in such interesting activities and if the only price is to smile – I could definitely do it. Norma, have a lovely NYE and a great hike as a biggining of the year 2013.

  3. I *really* need to get more exercise…I hope you enjoyed your Christmas, Norma!!

  4. Happy New Year to you, Norma.

  5. Thank you for sharing this! I just forwarded to my husband – sounds like the perfect way to kick off 2013. Happy New Year Norma 🙂

  6. What a perfect way to celebrate the change in the New Year for a healthy start hiking americas parks. I am sure it will be beautiful. I love hiking here in HK and as you know that more than 80 percent of HK is country parks filled with country trails for every level of hiking. A great family activity. Have a super 2013 and wishing you the best. Take care, BAM

  7. Eha says:

    From one of the greatest nature walk lovers in the blessed universe: wish I was there 🙂 ! Happy end of the year 🙂 !

  8. hotlyspiced says:

    I wish I could participate. Interesting though how they have these while the conditions are so bleak. I would have thought these walks would be better during the warmer months. Let me know how it goes xx

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello Charlie,
      Some areas of the USA actually have warm weather this time of year. A cold but nice day is predicted for the Hudson Valley on 1/1/13, so that’s good. Will try to remember to bring my camera.

  9. ChgoJohn says:

    A wonderful idea, Norma. Thanks for spreading the news. Some fresh snow would be nice, wouldn’t it?

    • Norma Chang says:

      Hello John,
      Going to hike at a park near you? We had more snow yesterday, the snow covered landscape is beautiful, but we do not want snow on the Walkway on 1/1/13, it will be treacherous high above the Hudson River.

  10. Eva Taylor says:

    Wish I could! It would be just beautiful to do this walk and meet you too! Happy new year Norma. Hope you have a great walk.

  11. Sammie says:

    Wow! Sounds like a great way to spend the New Year’s Norma! Happy New Year!!!

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