HOPEWELL TOWNSHIP, NJ  – Skip the Black Friday shopping crowds and enjoy the outdoors with a variety of activities at multiple Mercer County Parks.  The Mercer County Park Commission recently announced that their partnership with REI movement to #OptOutside continues this year with a wide-range of programs on Friday, November 29 between from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Free Nature Programs are open to the public where participants can complete a scavenger hunt in Roebling Park or Mercer Meadows.  Adventurers also can visit the Tulpehaking Nature Center located at 157 Westcott Avenue in Hamilton or the Historic Hunt Barn at 97 Blackwell Road in Pennington to pick up your “Choose your Own Adventure Passport” to search for clues through the trails of Roebling Park and Mercer Meadows. 

"Passports" can be picked between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. from either of these locations. Winners of the scavenger hunts will be able to choose from one of three prizes from REI including backpacks and hiking gear.  Both scavenger hunts are designed for any fitness or interest level, including families. All passports must be returned by 4 p.m. for prize drawing. REI gear and prizes available while supplies last.

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Participants looking for a more challenging adventure can take on a five-mile hike challenge designed for adults and children at Baldpate Mountain located at 28 Fiddlers Creek Road in Titusville. Maps for the course will be available all day at the Fiddlers Creek Parking Lot kiosk.  Meet up with volunteer trail guides at 10 a.m. in the Fiddlers Creek parking lot and hike with a group, or take on the challenge with a group of your own.   Hikers are encouraged to pack a lunch or snack to enjoy at the summit.

Hiking groups are sponsored by the Friends of Hopewell Valley Open Space. To register with a hiking group, or questions or concerns regarding this hike, call (609) 730-1560 or visit www.fohvos.org

All Mercer County Park systems are open from dawn until dusk. For more information and directions to Baldpate Mountain, Tulpehaking Nature Center or Mercer Meadows, visit www.mercercountyparks.org.

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