By David S. Ridderheim, Jr.
I was asked to write a few paragraphs on what Metea Park means to the community and me. Those two are intertwined so here are some quick thoughts.
Rejuvenation: Being close to and a part of nature is truly restorative. Walking on the beautiful trails (there are several, all different), listening to the wind through the trees, seeing the bubbling waters of Cedar Creek, or just absorbing the wonderful sights, sounds, smells, and touches is a great experience.
Recreation: There are so many opportunities throughout the entire year. It is great to see so many people hiking, jogging, swimming, bird watching, cross-country skiing, identifying trees, fishing, photographing, picnicking, or merely relaxing at one of the scenic overlooks.
Families: In today’s hectic world, I love to see families doing things together. My wife and I alone, or with some of our children and grandchildren, find Metea Park provides a great setting for family activities. You will be amazed at the questions and conversation that occur.
Education: Anybody walking through Metea cannot help but be in a learning mode looking for, and thinking about, nature and all of its inhabitants - insects, reptiles, mammals, plants, trees, birds - on and on. Most enjoyable for me is being a trail guide for Friends of Metea, and it is rewarding to help youngsters from pre-school through elementary ages as they explore the park. I am also most impressed with students from IPFW and Leo High School, teachers, and adult volunteers as they provide structured learning activities.
The residents of LeoCedarville and the surrounding region are fortunate to have a nature park such as Metea as an integral part of this community. With the rapid development of the area, it is vital this important area be maintained and improved for citizens to enjoy today and tomorrow.