GALION — With nice weather finally here to stay, and more COVID-19 restrictions being lifted, area residents and their children are flocking to area playgrounds to enjoy some fresh air.
And the coronavirus is not atop the list of things being worried about.
Paula Ross was sitting on a bench near the new playground equipment at Heise Park earlier this week. She was there watching her grandchildren, JJ and Julie Ross, have some fun and burn off some extra energy.
“We’re making an afternoon of it,” Paula said. “We’re going here and then getting some ice cream and then we’ll probably head over to the nature center. I really like this here, and the grandkids really like it, too.”
Paula said she wasn’t too concerned about getting out and about again, noting she carries disinfectant wipes in her car that she makes her grandkids use before and after they play on the park equipment.
“I think that’s good enough,” she said. “And when we’re out here, I am careful about who they are around. I try to be cautious, but I don’t want to be silly either. I believe fresh air and sunshine can kill a lot of germs.”
Friends Sarah Lewis and Emily Drumm were spotted at a picnic table at Heise Park enjoying their lunch from Wendy’s. They agreed it was finally nice to be able to get outside and take in the sunshine.
“We wanted to get out of the house and this is a nice shady spot,” Lewis said. “I think the whole (COVID-19) thing was blown out of proportion anyway. I think it’s been ridiculous that it’s been shut down as long as it has been.”
Drumm, who will be a senior at Northmor High School this fall, said she was really just enjoying being able to get out of her house, saying the last three months of school went OK.
“It wasn’t that hard because I didn’t have a science class or a math class for the second semester, so I had easier classes and didn’t have to stress out as much,” she said.
But she admitted it was a little difficult not being able to take part in the end-of-school-year experiences like prom and musicals.
“I was in the band and choir and stuff and my final dinner show got canceled because of this and I didn’t get to perform my solo that I’d been preparing,” Drumm said.
Lewis attended OSU-Mansfield this year and she said the last three months of classes were a little difficult.
“It went all online and I had two labs,” she said. “That was the hardest part … going online with chemistry and calculus. But I survived.”
Jacob Parmer also brought his two sons Bentley Emch and Hunter Parmer, to the park this week and they were having fun swinging, climbing and slipping down the slides.
“I just wanted to get out of the house and have some fun,” he said. “There aren’t too many people at the park right now. I don’t have any issues with (COVID-19). I think everything is good.”
JJ Ross had a great time playing in the sand Tuesday at Galion’s newest playgrhound area in Heise Park.
Galion’s parks are seeing more and more action in recent days. Emily Dunn and Sarah Lewis enjoyed a light lunch Tuesday at Heise Park.
It takes a little bit of time to master the new play equipment. But Julie Ross seems to have a handle on this shovel apparatus at Heise Park.
Bentley Emch tries out one of the swings at Heise Park on Tuesday afternoon.