Archive for Thursday, April 13, 2006

Small-town values of De Soto part of springtime walk

April 13, 2006

Even after an unusually mild winter, these early April days seem like a gift. To be outside in the ever-present Kansas springtime breeze and taking in the pastel beauty of another growing season reborn brings a resurgence of energy and feeling of liberation after the harshness of winter.

The days are also a gift before the more hectic days of May, when the calendar seems to become more crowded with a crunch of events and the pursuit of summer recreation. Now, we all have time to enjoy the lengthening evenings.

With the weather balmy, the air fragrant with blooms and insects yet to metamorphose to the pest stage, it is a time given to us to rediscover the community. The perfect way to do so is to shuck the car and enjoy the surroundings without the remove of a car window.

Get reintroduced to a neighbor, visit an old friend, make a new one or simply walk the city's sidewalk and trails to discover once again what an interesting town De Soto can be.

Downtown, a stroller might notice just how eclectic that business section is with its goat supply business, Model A garage, coffee shop, Italian import business, and the Snowden's barbershop -- preserved as if frozen in a Norman Rockwell painting.

Enjoy the ever-growing trail system, which with the Johnson County Parks and Recreation's cooperation will soon include a link from Lexington Avenue to Kill Creek Streamway Park, and the gem that is Miller Park. Discover what the town's kids know -- they are a web that knits the town together.

Much is made of small-town atmosphere and what it means. Surely, safely strolling a community's walkways would be part of that definition.

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