It's been a long time coming, but spring is finally here. It's time to put away the coats and hats and get ready for some outdoor fun.

Whether you're looking for a great park or a nice bike path, Canal Winchester has you covered. Not sure about each park's amenities? Just take a look on our website for pictures and details. You may even discover a park or path you forgot about!

And don't forget to mark your calendar for all of the fun local events coming up, too. On April 20 at 10 a.m., bring the kids to the Community Easter Egg Hunt at Hanners Park. Children up to 10 years old are invited to participate, and we've heard that the Easter Bunny is planning to hide around 6,000 eggs.

Following the egg hunt, mom and dad can head over to the Frances Steube Community Center at 1 p.m. for the Community Backyards Workshop to learn more about backyard conservation and gardening, and possibly earn $50 for the backyard, too. Check our website,, for all the details.

Drug take-back

On April 27, gather your expired and unused prescription medicines and bring them to Diley Ridge Medical Center's parking lot from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to dispose of them safely. Our take-back event is part of the DEA's nationwide Prescription Drug Takeback initiative, and it's set up to make dropping off quick and easy. You can simply drive up and drop off your pills, then head on your way. Keep in mind that the collectors can't accept liquids or inhalers, just pills -- and the pills should be removed from their original bottles and placed in a bag.

More spring events

As May arrives, you'll want to mark your calendars for the annual tree giveaway on May 4 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at Stradley Pavilion (right next to the Municipal Building, 36 S. High St.) Our urban forester, Dick Miller, and the Street Tree Advisory Board will be there to answer your questions and help you select the right tree for your yard. To participate, you must live within the city's corporation boundaries. No exceptions can be made, and proof of residency is required, such as a city water bill or a driver's license. If you're not sure if your address is actually within the city limits (because sometimes a Canal Winchester mailing address is actually outside corporation limits), you can check online at the Franklin County Auditor's website.

On May 15 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., we'll be hosting the annual Kris Sims Memorial Relay For Life Dinner at the community center. It's a spaghetti dinner fundraiser, and all of our elected officials, including Mayor Michael Ebert, will be ready to wait on you to earn tips for the city's Relay For Life team. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for kids, available at the door on the night of the event.

On May 17, we hope to see you at Stradley Park for Touch-A-Truck from 6 to 8 p.m. The next day, May 18, you can wake up early to see the TOSRV (Tour of the Scioto River Valley) bicyclists head out for their annual tour, and then experience Art on the Canal, the eighth annual Canal Winchester Art Stroll, in the heart of downtown from noon to 6 p.m.

Whether you're attending one of the local events or just enjoying your own backyard, we want to remind you to stay safe and have fun.

Amanda Lemke is events and communications coordinator for the city of Canal Winchester, which provides City Notes columns to the ThisWeek Canal Winchester Times.