06-06-12-lake-rim-park.jpgTo celebrate the bliss that is summertime, Lake Rim Park is having an end-of-the-school year party. Families are invited to celebrate the break from book reports, homework and teachers with Family Night Out in the Park on June 8, from 5:30 until 7:30 p.m. A variety of special activities are planned along with all the park offers every day.

The event will feature games with prizes, crafts and hands-on activities. Exhibitors will provide entertainment, and a DJ will provide the music. Food vendors will be on hand selling sandwiches, hotdogs, Italian ice and other summer favorites.

Kids will want to check out the dragon-shaped bouncy obstacle course and visit the archery station to learn how to shoot a bow.

“The event is free and the whole family will have fun during this interactive and educational night out,” said Amber Williams, park ranger coordinator at Lake Rim Park.

There will be nature and environmental exhibitors the share their knowledge of animals, plants and sustainability.

The Wildlife Rescue Center, based in Sanford, will have hawks, owls and other animals that have been rescued recently. The center will share the wonder of these great animals and how they survive in the wild.

Cumberland County Environmental Services will have activities for the kids and talk to families about recycling. Kids will be able to learn about water conservation and safety with Cumberland County’s Storm Water. Members of Sustainable Sandhills will also be on hand to answer questions about conversation and sustainability.

The park’s Environmental Mobile Unit will entertain and educate kids about the wild life in the area. Kids can explore the unit viewing animal replicas and bones as well as a touch-and-learn area.

“This celebration is a great way to give back to the community and raise awareness about the park,” said Williams.

Last year, was the first time Lark Rim Park hosted this event and several hundred people came out for the end-of-the-year celebration.The activities are geared toward elementary-aged children and their families, however children of all ages are welcome.

The regular attractions will be available as well. Lake Rim Park provides a wide variety of activities. The family can stroll along the one-mile border trail through the wetlands to Bone Creek, play a pick-up soccer game with friends or get the family together for a picnic. In addition to the walking trails and picnic areas, Lake Rim offers horseshoe pits, tennis courts sand volleyball courts, athletic fields, a Native-American themed garden and children’s playgrounds. The fields and courts are open to the public on a first-come, first-served basis unless reserved. Family pets are also welcome at the park, but all animals must be on a leash.

Lake Rim Park is located at 2214 Tar Kiln Dr. For more information, call 910-433-1018. The park’s normal hours of operation are: March-Oct. from 7 a.m.-9 p.m. and Nov.-Feb. from 7 a.m.-5 p.m.

Photo: Last year, Family Night Out drew big crowds to Lake Rim Park.

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