KENTUCKY--While social distancing is crucial to slowing the spread of coronavirus, that doesn’t mean you are confined to your home. In fact, Governor Andy Beshear has encouraged people to continue outdoor activities like gardening and taking walks.
Nature has positive effects on mental health and there are many beautiful places to get outside in Kentucky. While most visitors centers are closed at local parks, trails are still accessible.
Kentucky State Parks remain open, but park officials have made some changes with health and safety in mind. In keeping with social distancing recommendations, all scheduled events at the parks have been postponed through April 30, food services have been limited to carry out, and dining rooms, lounges and bars have been closed. Historic homes and museums are open and following winter/spring schedules.
Zeb Weese, executive director of the Office of Kentucky Nature Preserves, said all of the natural areas are still open.
"Get off the trail a little bit. Make sure you keep that 6-foot space when people are passing you on the trail. Be mindful of where you parked. You don't necessarily need to be parked next to somebody. It's little things like that in our daily lives, even when you're out in the woods, to think about that distance from other folks,” said Weese.
Bernheim Forest and Arboretum is another great spot in Kentucky to connect with nature, and it remains open to visitors as well.
For more information on social distancing, check out the guidelines from Kentucky Public Health.