AARP and Timucuan Parks Foundation are partnering up for the “Art in the Park” event in Jacksonville, Florida. To share the healing effects of connecting with First Coast parks, AARP in Jacksonville is teaming up with Northeast Florida allies. This will be the third and final event of the “Healthy Living: Fresh Air, Fitness, Friendship, and Fun” of the Feb-Apr. monthly initiative.

Art in the Park will offer participants a chance to practice their painting skills outdoors, emulating classic artists who modeled the “plein air” (open air) outdoors painting technique in the 1800s.  Studies have shown that positive mental and physical effects are produced when people immerse themselves in nature. The potential of therapeutic of natural parks relies on its complexity, mystery and power. All of these elements bring restorative effects in people.

The event begins Wednesday morning at Kathryn Abbey Hanna Park, one of Jacksonville’s oceanfront parks from 9 am to noon April 17.

Please bring shoes to donate for Dream Walkers – WALK IN MY SHOES, a community-wide shoe drive to collect 3,000 bags of new or gently worn shoes for needy families in underprivileged communities.

You or your organization can help collect at least one plastic bag containing 25 pairs of new or gently worn shoes per bag. The shoes can be for men, women, boys and girls, including all sizes, styles, and colors. This donation benefits the Youth Choosing Excellence program. Each year the Shoe Drive is from March 1-April 30th.

Come try your hand as you relax, observe, breathe, and capture the feeling of great artists  and nature! This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required.