Parks along the Chipola River in Jackson County have been cleaned for spring and now they are ready for action. Saturday morning an event will showcase the county's unique beauty, the Park Hop. The event has been a long time in the making, Chipola River Greenway Volunteers, the City of Marianna and the Tourist Development Council have collaborated a day for the community, packed with free outdoor entertainment.
The Park Hop kicks off at 8:30 in the morning at the Hinson Recreation Area. There will be a birding tour followed by a 9:00 tour discussing unique plant life to the park. From there groups will make their way to Caverns State Park and the day will wrap at Citizens Lodge Park. There will be lunch vendors, chalk, entertainment and crafts.
If you would rather stroll the parks at your own pace that's fine too, each park has a half mile walk scheduled. The event looks to end around 2:00 at Citizens Lodge. According to Tourist Development Council Director, Pam Fuqua, by bring people outside to local parks the TDC looks to revamp local park activity, "People that come here from outside and visitors, they go, you have so much beauty and abundance and serenity here I can't believe it. I'm coming back. People that live here, we kind of get used to it but we want to know you appreciate the gems in my backyard."
Originally the Park Hop included Butler and Bellamy Bridge Trails but rain closed down those areas. If the event is successful the TDC may hold another park hop this fall.