Soak up the Beauty:
Scenic stretches of the Maumee River entice you to meander down the peaceful river trail in Grand Rapids, OH. The gravel paths are one-mile each way and start after walking across the River Park’s bridge near the village center and travel along the Grand Rapids Dam area through Mary Jane Thurston State Park. The pathway is lush with river breezes weaving through the leaf-laden tree canopy creating a rich dappling effect of cool shaded and warm sun lit patches. Sit awhile and sway on the wooden bench swings to the rhythm of the breeze and the river’s current as you immerse yourself in the exquisite vistas of sky and water framed by majestic trees. Near the old Grand Rapids Dam, folks will be fishing in the knee deep water to hook pike, catfish, bass and crappie. This is one of those spots where all the best of nature simply melds together. Claim this perfect moment by proceeding down the stone stairway and shedding your shoes. It is pure summertime joy to stand barefoot in this sparkling ankle deep water as the cascading current caresses your feet, while the cool breeze plays over your skin, bathed in sunlight as birds sing and dragonflies flutter by. Farther along the trail are the MJT State Park campsites, picnic areas, launches for boats and kayaks/canoes, and an additional one mile loop trail through a secluded, forested floodplain.
For info and maps visit parks.ohiodnr.gov/maryjanethurston
Best in Town
Back in quaint, colorful Grand Rapids, OH (grandrapidsohio.com), visit Library House Books and Art, (24164 Front St.) I find fun, off- beat used/new books for all my quirky, creative and history buff friends here (facebook.com/libraryhousebooksandart).
Although, I am extremely picky about my brick oven, wood fired pizza crust, I can attest that the artisans at M & T’s Pizzeria (24099 Front St.) know what they’re doing – the crust is absolute perfection (facebook.com/mandtpizza).
A great place to launch your kayak/canoe is across from M & T’s. Pull into the public parking lot and the launch is to the west.