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President's Letter: Feel Free in the Forest Preserves of Cook County

Don’t you sometimes just want to escape? Have you ever wondered where you could go close to home and feel free to relax, feel free to explore and learn, and feel free to enjoy healthy recreation activities?

The Forest Preserves of Cook County offer a broad range of amenities and beautiful open spaces in which visitors can create their own adventure. Within the Forest Preserves, Cook County residents and visitors can enjoy miles of hiking and biking trails; places to cross-country skifish and kayak; opportunities to participate in volunteer stewardship; and places to learn about the local environment. No matter a person’s interests, there is something fun and exciting to be found in the Forest Preserves.

As a resident of Cook County, I have had the opportunity myself to enjoy many of these amenities. In the Forest Preserves, I have always had this feeling of being free – free from the stresses of daily life and free to relax. We hope this sentiment is shared by our visitors while they spend time in the Forest Preserves.

And that is why it is the inspiration behind the Forest Preserves new tagline – feel free.

Are you interested in learning about the plants and animals that thrive here? Feel free to spend an hour or two exploring a Nature Center or attending one of our many educational programs. Looking for ways to spend a day making yourself healthier? Find a nearby trail or consider taking on the nearly 300 steps at Swallow Cliff. Looking for ways to give back and make your community healthier? Check out all of our Volunteer Page.

There are so many options. And when you’re surrounded by 70,000 acres of wild and wonderful, there’s no better place to feel free.

We hope to see you in the Preserves!

Toni Preckwinkle, President

Forest Preserves of Cook County