A new trail at Bledsoe Creek State Park aims to help spark children’s imaginations while helping them stay active.

The Reading Ranger Storybook Trail opened July 20 and features 14 stops where children and adults can read pages of “Miss Maple’s Seeds” by Eliza Wheeler along the half-mile loop.

 “Essentially you’re reading to the children while they are also getting exercise and you’re in a state park setting,” Bledsoe Creek State Park Manager Chris Thurman said. “It’s meant to get kids interested in not just reading but also being outdoors.”

The path is located on the paved Mayo Wix Memorial Trail, which is Americans with Disabilities Act accessible and located behind the park’s visitor center. It takes approximately 30 minutes to complete.

The first Reading Ranger Storybook Trail debuted in 2016 at Long Hunter State Park in Hermitage. The program has since expanded to several other state parks like the one in Sumner County.

“If you haven’t seen one of these, you’re going to love walking this trail particularly if you have children or grandchildren,” Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation Deputy Commissioner for Parks and Conservation Jim Bryson said during the unveiling ceremony. “This will be a living trail and there will be new books that come in over and over again. You’re going to be able to enjoy this trail… for a long, long time to come.”

Bledsoe Creek State Park is located at 400 Zieglers Fort Rd. in Gallatin. For more information contact 615-452-3706.

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