Although we had a very wet spring, summer finally is officially here.

That means that the bike paths, parks and even our own backyards will be filled with fun activities.

When you're outside enjoying family time together this summer, it's important to keep safety in mind, too.

Make sure to protect your skin from insect bites and sunburn and always stay hydrated.

If you're riding bikes or skateboards, don't forget to wear helmets and other protective gear.

If you don't know where the pool is located or where the parks are, visit our website, canalwinchesterohio.gov, for information and hours.

While you're out and about, you might see a group of city employees taking a walk together this summer. Feel free to join us.

We walk as part of our workplace health and wellness program.

It's just one of the ways we try to keep wellness in mind while we work for you.

Some of our city employees took the initiative to create a wellness committee a few years ago.

The committee plans biweekly activities and classes for our employees, helping us learn more about a wide range of health and wellness topics. The activities also keep us reminded about practicing healthy habits like eating right and exercising.

We're working together as a team to become a healthier workforce. This not only makes us healthier as a group, but it helps us serve Canal Winchester residents better.

And it's not just our employees that we think about; our city believes in a culture of wellness.

We care about the safety, health and wellness of all of our residents.

In fact, it's proven that a healthy city enhances how we all live, work and play. We hope you make safety, health and wellness part of your summer plans.

If you have the chance to learn more about general wellness, mental health issues or any other health-related topic, even if it's focused on something that doesn't directly affect you, keep learning. You may help a family member, friend or neighbor.

Speaking of helping neighbors, please make sure to check on your elderly and sick neighbors when it gets hot this summer. Our older residents are at a higher risk for heat-related health issues.

Mayor Mike Ebert often remarks that Canal Winchester is the "greatest little city in Ohio."

Our city staff agrees, and we support our community in making healthy choices so you can live a long, healthy and happy life in Canal Winchester.

Nancy Stir is the human-resources coordinator for the city of Canal Winchester. The city provides this column to ThisWeek Canal Winchester Times.