Springing into (Blue) SPRINGS

Things are heating up in Blue Springs, and it’s not just the weather. Spring is finally here, bringing with it sunshine, warmer temperatures and (unfortunately) finals; however, don’t let test taking get you down because it’s time to shed your winter layers and get going on the next adventure.

For Wildcats with an active lifestyle waiting to soak up the sun, parks and hiking trails are always an option in Blue Springs.

Landahl Park is well known for its mountain bike trail variety that include tight and twisty IMBA style trails or some downhill action dirt jumps.

Lake view parks like Lake Remembrance, Longview, Fleming Park & Lake Jacomo and Rotary Park offer scenic walking trails and a picture perfect place for impromptu photo shoots. Lake Jacomo is a freshwater reservoir in Fleming park that includes a mariana, boat ramps, and fishing, leaving the rest of the park to native animal enclosures, campgrounds and soccer and model airplane fields.  Waterfall Park is also another park that offers both walking trails and a playground for small children and fishing.

Burr Oak Woods Nature Center has tons of trails and plenty of animals to observe, hunt and trap (with special permits of course). Burr Oaks is opened Tuesday through Saturday from 8 am to 5 pm with Sunday, Monday and state holidays off.

And for those who have furry friends, the Blue Springs Dog Park has a nice little trail for pet walking and a pond to cool off in after. The dogs aren’t the only ones who have a chance to cool off this spring; Blue Springs Lake is now open to the public at 11 am.  

If the outside life isn’t your scene, don’t worry! Blue Springs still has a lot to offer.

Paradise Park, IBEX Climbing Gym, Pinot’s Palette, Field House, Rink Ratz, Lunar Bowl and Missouri Town–the possibilities are endless as there is in fact something for everyone. Paradise Park has everything from miniature golf, bumper cars and batting cages to an arcade and go karts. Lunar Bowl now offers karaoke along with bowling on Fridays starting this Friday, April 26. And for the artist and history buffs, Pinot’s Palette offers a fun and creative outlet to create projects of the wildest imaginations with friends while Missouri Town takes their visitors back in time to Missouri in 1855.

In Blue Springs there are truly enough options to keep the Wildcats busy, but that doesn’t mean students shouldn’t look outside the city limits for some fun. Kansas City and surrounding cities all offer their own unique activity venues, such as  the well-known Worlds of Fun and (soon opening) Oceans of Fun.

Watching your pocketbook? Check out these free places!

Feeling like being educated? A plethora of museums line KC and majority are free like the Federal Reserve Bank of KC’s money museum, Frontier Army, or, if you’re feeling artistic, The Kemper and Nelson-Atkins are there to mix it up with a display of contemporary art. The American Jazz and Negro Leagues Baseball museum, Union station and the WWI museums are also options for nominal fees; but hey, who can really put a price on history? If museums aren’t your thing, then take a crack at the Kansas City public library!

Not everyone is looking for a lesson in art or history, which is why it’s a great thing that Kansas City has music coursing through its veins. Records with Merritt, Riot Room, Uptown Theater and recordBar all showcase acts or are open to sell all sorts of music.

Ride the KC streetcar, a 2.2- mile line traveling to downtown KC’s vibrant districts. Travel to the City Market, which is found within the historic River Market and boasts a variety of gift shops and restaurants. While you’re in the area, check out the Lakeside Nature center, Kauffman Memorial Garden, or the Kansas City Zoo.

Kansas City is known for its BBQ, so take a trip to Arthur Bryant’s, Gates, Q39, The Peanut, LC’S, or even Jack Stack. And while this next place may not be BBQ it still should be considered for a pit stop especially on Thursdays, The Roasterie offers free public coffee tastings from 5 – 6 pm to let people sample coffee from all across the globe.

Finally, take a stroll through Crown Center and the Legends outlet, go sightseeing down on the plaza or take in some of Kansas City’s magnificent fountains.

With the chance of discovering our beautiful city and others near it, the words “I’m bored” should never be uttered from a Wildcat again.