All you need to do is wander the aisles of the grocery store to decipher what season we are swiftly approaching. Each aisle is scattered with selections of pumpkin spice editions and caramel apple additions. Fall has found us yet again. While here in Central Texas the changing of leaves has not happened, we have seen the summer heat break. While this heat has given us a much needed break, remember to go out and enjoy all the lovely things our area has to offer families.
Firstly, I recommend heading out to your local park. While all summer the big shades overhead were crucial in selecting which park you would attend, they are now optional. Our area has more parks per capita than any where else in our nation. Personally, I have a darling one just at the end of my block. If you want some more recommendations on can’t miss ones check out Oak Creek park in Temple, also known as Piggy Park. If you are over in Belton, Yettie Polk Park is a great center of entertainment. Harker Heights has a diverse park in Purser Family Park, and Killeen has Lions Club Park. A fun fact for new families, if you are meeting others for a play date at Lions park, make sure to ask which one. There are 3 different ones between Killeen and Temple that I know of!
If you have seen all that the area parks have to offer (really, have you seen it ALL?) check out the beautiful lakes. Belton Lake won’t be the first place to go fishing, so I understand, but it is gorgeous to see. We drove up on a whim last fall after we moved to the area. I was stunned, I had thought Montana had the market cornered on beautiful lakes. Several people have recommended Stillhouse Hollow Lake to me as having more enjoyable beach areas. I think it sounds like the perfect way to enjoy a couple of days and try each one.
While there are lovely water ways, our wooded areas are cool and comfy as our days warm back up a little. Check out the trail system out at Chalk Ridge Falls park. If you go on Wednesday mornings you will likely run into the families that are with Free Forest School. If you want to drive North instead of South there is Mother Neff State Park. I have not had the opportunity to go, but understand it is a must see.
While you are out and about, don’t forget to apply your sunscreen and bug repellent. Wear the right shoes for the trails as some are slick or steep. Lastly, put your phone down and enjoy the fresh air and sights with the family. Nothing like getting out in nature to connect with your children.