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Area State Parks Beckon For First Day Hikes

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Steve Kaminski: http://www.flickr.com/photos/33564637@N00/953237279

The Virginia and Maryland State Parks systems are part of a national program to start Americans down a healthy path in 2014 beginning today.

It's called First Day Hikes. State parks in all 50 states are encouraging residents and visitors to ring in the new year with a guided hike. The one to two mile journeys are led by park rangers and volunteers.

Lewis Ledford, Executive Director of the National Association of State Parks, says Massachusetts began offering First Day Hikes in its parks more than 20 years ago.

"It's just a great way to kick off the new year, to enjoy family time, friends time, to address some of the fitness issues that a lot of us are paying attention to with new years resolutions," Ledford says.

Last year, more than 22,000 people hiked nearly 44,000 miles in state parks across the country.

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