Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Family Camp Out at Heritage Park

The first ever family campout is coming to Heritage Park on November 11-12! The fun starts Friday night at 7pm and will wrap up Saturday morning at 7am. Families with children 15 & under can attend, cost is just $30 for the whole family! You can sign up here or at the Cullman Civic Center by November 10. The activities will include a scavenger hunt, capture the flag, story time, family versus family competitions, lots of prizes, great food and snacks, and more! Here is a picking list so your family is ready for the camp out!

1. A tent. Recommended, but not required, your family will probably want to set up a tent for their base camp or to get in a quick snooze when activities wrap up! All tents are allowed and will be setup on the soccer fields at Heritage Park.

2. Proper attire. We will be doing lots of games across the park, so a good pair of tennis shoes will be needed as well as sporty attire. We recommend bringing an extra pair of clothes or two so you can change if you get a little messy with some of our competitions. Also, check the weather to make sure you are dressed appropriately! It will get colder as the night goes on, so bring warmer clothes for later in the night.

3. Snacks and drinks. We will be providing dinner from 7-8pm as people are arriving and setting up tents, but you may want to bring water bottles, extra drinks, or any snacks you may want throughout the night. We will have some snacks throughout the night, but make sure you stay hydrated with plenty of water!

4. Sleeping bag, blankets, air mattress, etc. You will want somewhere cozy to camp out the night on. Hammocks are also encouraged, especially if the weather is not too cool!

5. Chairs, coolers, and other camp site necessities. Bring some folding chairs, coolers, and other things to personalize your camp site.

6. Lanterns, flashlights, etc. You may need them for some of our games or to get around the park during the campout. Cell phone flashlights will also work, but make sure your phone is charged in advance!

7. NO matches, lighters, fire logs, or anything fire related. The City of Cullman is currently in a drought, and the State of Alabama has issued a no-burn warning for most of the state. Therefore, we will unfortunately not be able to have any camp fires or fires of any kind at the event. Just bundle up if you need to keep warm!

Family Campout Itinerary

7pm-7:45pm – Set-up tents, serve dinner, and play free games (corn hole, Jinga, checkers, etc.)

7:45pm – 8:45pm – Opening family v. family games:
·      Build tallest structure with marshmallows and noodles (15 minutes)
·      Paper airplane contest for distance (10 minutes to build, then race)
·      Tug of war contest

8:45pm – 9:15pm – Sand Castle Building Contest

9:15pm – 10:00pm – Scavenger Hunt Contest

10:00pm – 10:15pm – Snack break and free games

10:15pm – 10:45pm – Family Feud/Trivia Contest

10:45pm – 11:30pm – Capture the Flag

11:30pm – 11:45pm – Snacks and free games

11:45pm – 12:15pm – Story Time

12:15pm – 7:00am – Sleep!

7:00am – Departure  

For more information, feel free to contact us at 256-734-9157 or by email at

Waid Harbison
Marketing, Programs, & Events Coordinator
Cullman City Parks & Recreation

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Featured Activity of the Month: Hiking

Hiking isn't just taking a short walk in the woods (well, it is if you want it to be). Taking a hike is an opportunity to escape the modern world and unplug. Along with providing a break from reality, hiking offers physical benefits that can improve health in individuals of all ages. 

·       Hiking on a regular basis can help lower your risk of developing heart disease. Heart disease can describe a range of conditions that affect your heart, such as: coronary artery disease, arrhythmias (heart rhythm abnormalities), and narrowed or blocked blood vessels. You heart is a muscle. Activity that increases heart rate will strengthen the cardiovascular system and will help improve overall wellness.

·       Improves blood pressure and blood sugar levels, particularly in individuals who have Type-2 diabetes. Type-2 diabetes tends to occur in individuals who are overweight, sedentary, and have poor diets. By adding hiking to your routine, Type-2 diabetic patients will push glucose out of their blood and into surrounding cells, and will help to maintain more consistent blood sugar levels.

·       Hiking helps boost bone density, since walking is a weight-bearing exercise. The impact of your feet hitting the ground during a prolonged hike can increase the bone density in your lower body. There will be even more impact when hiking uphill or downhill.

·       Builds strength in your glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, and the muscles in your hips and lower legs. Hiking also engages your abdomen and will result in strengthening your core. When hiking more difficult uphill terrain, using your arms to pull yourself up a trail will also increase upper body strength. It is possible to achieve a full-body workout during one hike. Over time, this can strengthen and tone your entire body without setting foot in a gym.

·       Improve balance by combining movements of multiple muscle groups at the same time. Synchronization paired with locomotion and adaptation to changing landscape requires lower body and core strength that will aid in balance. Balance is important to individuals of all ages, but most important in the aging populations. 

·       Hiking can help improve weight. There are many contributing factors to weight loss, but the pace and duration that you hike can lead to weight loss. If you consume fewer calories than are expended during physical activity, weight loss will occur. Hiking is essentially like hitting the fitness jackpot for your body. Cardiovascular and strength training combined creates a more efficient and beneficial workout. 

·       Hiking can have a positive impact on mood. Spending time in nature and breaking free from light cast by a television or computer screen, has been proven to improve overall mood. Surrounding yourself with nature and unplugging from technology will allow you to appreciate the natural beauty around you and create a more positive outlook on life.

           Take an opportunity to get out and enjoy the natural beauty that surrounds you. Who knows, you may find a new appreciation for something that you never noticed before! Sometimes you've just got to get out and live.