Written By:  Kelly Maeser

**Editors note ~ we are excited to welcome Kelly to Her View From Home! She’ll be doing a variety of posts, including unique destination locations throughout this great state! Thanks for being a part of our team, Kelly!** ~Leslie

Nebraska Recreation and Park Association and Nebraska Game and Parks Commission partnered in 2008 to create The Great Park Pursuit. Their goal is to “help promote active lifestyles while increasing awareness of the nature rich outdoor recreation opportunities throughout Nebraska.” It is a state wide scavenger hunt of sorts. You pick a location from one of the 20 locations throughout the state (Many are in the central Nebraska area!) and follow the clues to collect a nature impression.

First you register your team or family on-line (or request a hard copy registration form). After you have selected which park or parks you want to go to, print off a park page where you will collect the rubbing of your nature impression.

Follow the clues to find the Great Park Pursuit post within the park you choose. Place your park page over the impression to make the rubbing. Hold on to the impression(s) you collect and mail them postmarked September 19th to be entered to win great prizes! The more impressions you collect the bigger the prizes you could win.

So far this summer my family and I have gone to two parks. The first attempt was at Two Rivers State Recreation Area. Long story short we didn’t find the GPP post. We gave up before our two wonderful children (ages 5 and 2) went into complete melt down mode from the heat and because although we had said we were going to a park, there was not a playground in sight.

My brother did tell me Two River is one of the harder parks to find the post, so we plan to try that one again on a cooler day.

The second attempt, at Lake Cunningham in Omaha, was much more successful. Lake Cunningham is a 390 acre Lake surrounded by 1,050 acres of park land located on the north central edge of Omaha.

We set off one late afternoon after my husband came home from work. After the failure of our first attempt my son and husband were not looking forward to the outing as much as my daughter and I were. Luckily we quickly found the area we were supposed to start off at in our search for the GPP post.

My children were again disappointed there was not a playground, but the awesome sailboat out on the lake helped.

We then got out our compass, and by compass I mean the one on my husband’s iPhone, to figure out which direction was northwest. We wandered along the path, stopping numerous times so my daughter could pick flowers or get rocks out of her shoes; while my son and husband continued on to check out the boats and to do other boy things.

We finally all caught up with each other when we saw the GPP post just ahead on the path.

After getting the nature impression we spent time exploring the path further. My husband tried to teach my son to skip rocks, while my daughter just threw them in and I kept her from falling in the lake. After a while of adventure and play we left Lake Cunningham and the GPP for another day.

To register, or get more information, go to the Great Park Pursuit website. The impressions can be collected from May 1st-September 17th, so there is still plenty of time to go out have a park adventure of your own!

Kelly Maeser

Kelly is a Nebraska girl who is still trying to figure out what she is going to be when she grows up as she makes up stories and writes poetry. In addition to writing for Her View From Home. She had a poem published in Migraine Expressions: A Creative Journey through Life with Migraines, and is currently working on a collection of poetry and a YA novel. Kelly is taking a break from blogging, but you can follow her and her creative musing on Instagram (kellymaeserwriter), Twitter (@KellyMaeser) and Facebook (Kelly Maeser- Writer). http://kellymaeser.blogspot.com/