The Mercury News

Fun ways to celebrate the arrival of spring


Spring is a season of rebirth in more ways than one. Spring is when certain animals emerge from hibernatio­n, while many species lay eggs or give birth. Flowers and trees also bloom in spring, providing spectacula­r foliage and awe-inspiring color.

People also may feel like they have a new lease on life as they shake away the doldrums of winter and embrace longer hours of sunlight and warmer temperatur­es. The arrival of spring is worthy of celebratio­n, and these activities and ideas can be enjoyable ways to spend the first day of spring.

Spend time outdoors

One is never too old for a picnic in a park or a bike ride on the trails. Spending time outdoors is beneficial because it exposes people to sunlight, which is a precursor to the developmen­t of vitamin D. Vitamin D affects muscles, joints and tissues. It also can affect mood.

Plant a tree

Honor the first day of spring, and Earth Day a month later, by planting trees. Trees provide habitats for wildlife, create shade, reduce air pollution by filtering the air and produce oxygen. A sapling is a manageable tree to plant and something children can do as well.

Enjoy spring crafts

Grab an inexpensiv­e canvas and paint a landscape that is in full bloom. Use quickset plaster to create steppingst­ones embedded with mosaic glass pieces for color that can be added to the backyard.

Host a potluck

Put fresh spring vegetables and fruits on display. Options include artichokes, apricots, asparagus, carrots, dandelion greens and radishes. Put together a pasta primavera, which essentiall­y is a spring pasta dish laden with fresh vegetables.

Decorate with flowers

Bring fresh flowers indoors and put them on display in vases or table centerpiec­es. Cut stems on a 45-degree angle underwater to help flowers last longer. In addition, choose floral-themed curtains and throw pillows to add some spring decor.

Create a water feature

The sound and sights of cascading water can be both relaxing and picturesqu­e. A water feature can be something as simple as a small fountain or more elaborate such as a koi pond.

Spring is a time of year when people can enjoy seasonal activities that make the most of the warmer weather and blooming landscape.

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