Garber Nature Center hosts ‘Mud Day’

Photos by Deron Newman

It was a great day to play in the mud! 

The Preble County Park District hosted a special event at the Garber Nature Center recognizing International Mud Day, which is set for June 29. The center held its Mud Day on Saturday, June 24.  

Those coming out to learn and have fun in the mud discovered what makes up soil and the benefits of mud, while making mud pies, mud sculptures, and other fun “mud” activities. The event was led by teacher and naturalist Bev Holland and PCPD Executive Director Mindy Robinson.

The park district hosts events throughout the year at the Garber Nature Center and Wagers Park (Devil’s Backbone). Both locations also offer trails for walking and hiking during daylight hours. For more information and a complete schedule of upcoming events, go to: 


The Preble County Park District will be celebrating its 20th anniversary with a special event a the Wild Hearts African Farm. Ticket and sponsor information is available at

From the PCPD website: 

“A Little History – The Preble County Park District was created by Preble County Probate Court Judge Dues in January of 2003.  The first Park District Commissioners were appointed in February of 2003 and have worked diligently to establish the Board policies.  In March of 2004, the Preble County Commissioners deeded over to the Preble County Park District, 100 acres of mixed farmland and forest to be used as the first County Park. 

“The land was donated by a local family and has been developed as the Allen & Adaline Garber Nature Center.  About 33 acres of forest area has been developed into hiking trails.  Another 60 acres remain as crop land and is leased out to bring income to the Park District.  A wetland was created on some of the crop land and 975 trees were planted in an area adjacent to the forest.  

“An ODNR NatureWorks grant helped us build a 400′ long handicapped accessible boardwalk that starts at the rear parking lot and ends at a viewing platform overlooking our Old Oak Tree.  A second NatureWorks grant helped us build an environmentally friendly restroom, ‘The Eloo’ that was completed June 2010.  The Pavilion was constructed with a third NatureWorks grant and completed early in May 2012. 

“In 2016, the Wagers family donated 24 acres of land near Camden Ohio known as the Devil’s Backbone.  Under the Wagers’ care this area become a wildlife sanctuary with native plants and animals.  The area is scenic with limestone formations and beautiful waterfalls.  This park is currently being planned for development with hiking trails and a picnic area. 

“The Preble County Park District consists of three commissioners appointed by the current Preble County Probate Court Judge.  Each Commissioner serves a term of three years. Current Board of Commissioners include: President – J. Stephen Simmons, Vice President – Kaylee Jo Lebo, and Commissioner – Jeffrey A. Sewert.”