Summit County Metro Parks: A great place for a fall stroll

By Qiu Jiang

The Metro Parks of Summit County – along with their beautiful natural scene and diverse wildlife—has long been the county’s major draw for Ohio residents. The Summit County Metro Parks, established in 1921, includes 13 parks total, stretching across 9,000 acres and six conservation areas with over 120 miles of trails.

Tourists are encouraged to visit the Metro Parks, where they will be provided the opportunity to take part in a diverse
variety of activities such as camping, swimming, fishing and kayaking. No matter which activity you choose, the Metro Parks give you an intimate connection with nature.

Bald Eagles, black bears, green darner dragonflys and widow skimmers—maybe you can find one of these rare species in the parks!

You can also join the programs and events offered by Metro Parks throughout the year.  These include hiking
outings, a Trout Derby for children, concerts in the park or by the lake, Free Lake Swimming Days and the STOMP Bicycle Adventure. There are special events in some of the parks which are posted at the entrance of the park you visit.

Located in northwest Akron, the Sand Run Metro Park is a perfect place to unwind. It takes about 15 minutes to drive there from The University of Akron.

You can drive through the ford crossing where Sand Run meanders across Sand Run Parkway. In the cool, shady ravines of Sand Run and its tributary streams, skunk cabbage, hemlocks, ferns and large colonies of horsetails grow.

Sand Run Metro Park is “the perfect place to meet friends for a walk,” according to senior Senior Theodore Johnson-Kanu. The park has over 14 miles of trails in its 987 acres of cool, shady forests. There is a soccer field there as well.

Edison Fan attended one of the events held in Sand Run by the Chapel of UA. “It was a nice place to get together with friends and meet new friends,” Fan said. They had a barbeque there and played soccer on the grass.

New visitors may not realize the trails from the regular adjacent parkway. The Jogging Trail, which is one of the most popular public amenities in the entire district, is a good place to relax. The shade trail has some good hills along its six-mile round-trip between Portage Path and Revere Road. Walking in the trail is a nice experience with the wild nature.

Just put on your sportswear and a pair of good hiking shoes, and bring drinking water and your wide-open eyes. A friendly reminder, be aware of mosquitoes and other insects when walking through the trees after sunset.