SAFE CAMPING

Some people love the great outdoors and are willing to pitch a tent in the nearest glade and set up a rustic campsite. Other people prefer to camp with all the comforts of home in an RV or trailer. (This is often called “glamping.”) Whatever your preference, being prepared is essential for a safe and successful camping trip.  “Being prepared for emergency situations is critical when people are out in remote areas with limited access to phone service, hospitals and emergency help,” said Don Lauritzen.

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LET YOUR KIDS STOP AND SMELL THE ROSES AT THE ARBORETUM

Are you looking for something that can provide your children a very special opportunity? Something that at the same time will allow them to experience stimulating sensations? The place you seek is right here in Lexington on the campus of the University of Kentucky. The Arboretum is Kentucky’s state botanical garden and includes the Home Demonstration Garden, the Rose Garden and the Fragrance Garden.  Start your exploration with a stop at the Dorotha Smith Oatts Visitor Center, which is open Monday through Friday....

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KEEPING KIDS ACTIVE IN THE SUMMER

Kids these days are heading down the path leading to a sedentary lifestyle, and that makes it important for adults to spark a passion for activity in them. This will keep their bodies, brains and development on track. Summer is the right time to get them moving.

Here are five ways to encourage your kids to live and love an active and healthier lifestyle outdoors.

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Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area is a vast and truly unparalleled natural treasure in southwestern Kentucky. It’s a special place for enjoying nature. As part of America’s great outdoors since 1963, Land Between the Lakes encompasses over 170,000 acres of forests, wetlands and open lands on a peninsula between Kentucky and Barkley lakes in Western Kentucky and Tennessee. Land Between the Lakes has one of the largest blocks of undeveloped forest in the eastern United States. With more than 300 miles of natural shoreline, lake access provides idyllic settings for camping, picnicking, hiking, fishing, boating, wildlife viewing and water sports. Children and families especially enjoy the Elk and Bison Prairie, the Homeplace 1850s Working Farm and Living History Museum, Woodlands Nature Station and star parties at the Golden Pond Planetarium and Observatory. The United Nations designated the recreation area as a Man of the Biosphere Reserve in 1991.There are over 200 miles of trails and abandoned roads for biking, horseback riding, offroad vehicles, hiking and exploring wildlife.


Read more about these and other national parks and recreations centers in Kentucky at www.kentuckytourism.com or contact the Kentucky Department of Travel at 1-800-225-8747.


Sources and Resources

National Park Service Website. Kentucky National Parks. www.nps.gov/state/ky/index.html

Kentucky state parks offer countless treasures, from world-class rock climbing to the world’s longest cave system. Discover the first “gateway to the west” and the birthplace of one of America’s most revered presidents, all on more than 1 million acres of unspoiled wilderness.


Here are some Kentucky sites that are overseen by the National Park Service:


•  Abraham Lincoln Birthplace, Hodgenville

•  Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, Whitley City

•  Cumberland Gap National Historical Park, Middlesboro

•  Fort Donelson National Battlefield, Dover


Surely at the top of any visitor’s list is Mammoth Cave National Park. Mammoth Cave is the longest recorded cave system in the world. More than 348 miles of it have been mapped, making it at least three times longer than any other known cave.


The Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area is a hidden treasure of outdoor fun and breathtaking scenery. Recreation offerings are wide ranging. There are over 130 miles of trails for horseback riding; two horse camps are located in the park. Fishing on the river is a big draw; smallmouth bass and bream are the main catches.

KENTUCKY PARKS ARE FULL OF NATURAL TREASURES

Hunting, bird watching and wildlife viewing are other popular pastimes at Big South Fork.


The Daniel Boone National Forest is the only national forest completely within the boundaries of Kentucky. Established in 1937, it was originally named the Cumberland National Forest, after the core region called the Cumberland Purchase Unit. The Daniel Boone National Forest is a beautiful place to explore, embracing some of the most rugged terrain west of the Appalachian Mountains. Steep forested slopes, sandstone cliffs and narrow ravines characterize the land. Visitors come here to hike, camp, picnic, rock climb, boat, hunt, fish, ride, target shoot and relax. The forest contains three large lakes (Cave Run Lake, Laurel River Lake and Lake Cumberland), many rivers and streams, Clifty Wilderness, Beaver Creek Wilderness, Red River Gorge and the Sheltowee Trace National Recreation Trail that extends across the length of the forest. It sprawls over 250,000 acres of Appalachian hills and spans over 800,000 acres total. The forest boasts covered bridges, camping sites, the Buckeye Trail for biking and walking and fishing and boating for water lovers.

DR. THOMAS W. MILLER, PH.D, ABPP

Thomas W. Miller, Ph.D., ABPP, is a professor emeritus and senior research scientist, Center for Health, Intervention and Prevention, University of Connecticut; retired service chief from the VA Medical Center; and tenured professor in the Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, University of Kentucky.

more articles by Dr thomas w. miller