Hit the Trails ... On Skis » Cross-country skiing is a cool
way to cover some ground, and you don't even have to own skis to give it a try.
When snow depths are 6 inches or greater, you can rent skis at the park's Winter
Sports Center at Kendall Lake Shelter for $15 per day or $7.50 for three hours.
A limited number of children's skis are available, as is instruction (advanced registration
is required). "It's a sport that's easy to do but involves a certain technique,"
says interpretive ranger Paul Motts. The park website provides a list of trails,
ranging from less than 2 miles in length to just under 20. Kendall Lake Shelter,
Kendall Park Road (1.6 miles west of Akron Cleveland Road), Boston Heights
... Or Snowshoes » When snowfall tops 4 inches, visitors can
strap on snowshoes for a $5 rental fee. Rentals are available at both the Winter
Sports Center and Boston Store, and you can snowshoe on all park trails except the
Ritchie Ledges and Brandywine Falls trail routes. "[It's] a unique experience because
it's quiet and peaceful, and you make almost no noise," Motts says. "You can hear
all the sounds that nature provides." Kendall Lake Shelter, Kendall Park Road (1.6
miles west of Akron Cleveland Road), Boston Heights; 1548 Boston Mills Road, Peninsula
Go Sledding » For those who live in the flatter parts of our
region, places to sled can be difficult to find. And even if there are some near
you, they may not measure up to the rolling Kendall Hills. The parking area at the
Pine Hollow Trailhead off Quick Road is huge, but the best part about Kendall Hills
may be the variety of sledding options in one spot. "There's a nice mixture of hills,"
Mott says, "from long ones to shorter ones good for small children." 5465 Quick
Hit the Slopes » Between the Cuyahoga Valley's twin ski resorts
of Boston Mills and Brandywine, there's a total of 88 acres of slopes. If skiing
isn't your style, you can always go tubing at Brandywine. "We have a •magic carpet,"
... which is a conveyer belt that carries you up so you don't have to walk up the
hill, and you can maximize your time tubing," says marketing and public relations
director Steve Mackle. Both resorts offer equipment rentals, lessons and food. If
you want a quieter experience, Mackle advises heading down on a weekday morning.
"It's nice getting up early and getting those first tracks on the slope." Boston
Mills Ski Resort, 7100 Riverview Road, Peninsula; Brandywine, 1146 W. Highland Road,
Sagamore Hills, bmbw.com
Cut Down your own Christmas Tree » Don't pull that fake pine
out again this year. Take the family and go cut one down yourself. The privately
owned Heritage Farms in Peninsula grows trees for just the occasion. "They are pretty
much an establishment in Peninsula," says Diane Seskes, president of the Peninsula
Area Chamber of Commerce. "It's a tradition. There are families that have gone there
to get their trees for years." Of course, if you'd rather not cut it down yourself,
there are precut ones available, too. If you don't want to wait until winter, Pumpkin
Pandemonium kicks up at the farm once October rolls around. "There are games and
mazes," Seskes says. "They've been known to sell out of their pumpkins two weeks
before Halloween." 6050 Riverview Road, Peninsula, 330-657-2330