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New Years Day hikes planned at 15 Connecticut state parks

December 29, 2019 GMT

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Guided hikes will be offered on New Year’s Day at 15 parks and recreation areas across Connecticut.

The free First Day Hikes, which average one or two miles, are being hosted by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. It’s part of America’s State Parks’ First Day Hikes initiative, which is taking place in all 50 states on Wednesday.

“Connecticut is pleased to host First Day Hikes and join others nationally in promoting and encouraging people to get outside and into our beautiful state parks,” said department Commissioner Katie Dykes.

The goal of the First Day hikes is to encourage people to get outside, exercise, enjoy nature and welcome the new year with friends and family. Parks staff and volunteers will lead the hikes.

Information about the locations can be found on the Connecticut State Parks and Forests website.

Some hikes, such as one planned at Burr Pond State Park in Torrington, allow dogs on leashes. But others, such as a hike through the Candlewood Hill Wildlife Management Area in Groton do not. Those looking for adventure might consider a moderate two-mile hike through Kettletown State Park in Southbury.

First Day Hikes began more than 25 years ago at the Blue Hills Reservation, a state park south of Boston.