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Do you remember these lyrics to the Rodgers and Hammerstein song “It Might As Well Be Spring,” from the musical State Fair?

“I’m as restless as a willow in a windstorm
“I’m as jumpy as a puppet on a string
“I’d say that I had spring fever
“But I know it isn’t spring.”

That restlessness is a familiar feeling for me, especially now when it is actually spring. True, it’s not that we’ve been cooped up all winter as Northerners can be. But whenever the month of March approaches I still feel a sudden, fierce drive to go outside and do something—to be on the move and active, surrounded by plants in bloom and birds twittering on tree branches and, yes, even bending a little under the occasional stiff breeze, blowing away whatever funk February might have left me in.

So you could say that Kim and Laura Hackett’s piece in this issue about some varied—and effective—methods for getting into shape while playing in the great outdoors struck a chord for me. Cycling? Yep, I’m pumping up the tires on that bike that’s been sitting idle in the garage for months. Pickleball? Never tried it, but I hear it’s easier than tennis. Hula hooping? Haven’t done that in decades, but why not? Fencing? Well, I may not be ready for that, even with those sharp sword tips safely covered, but if you used to fence back in college, maybe now’s the time for you to pick up the foils again.

Of course, spectator sports beckon this time of year, too, with my favorite, baseball’s spring training season, already well under way at Sarasota’s Ed Smith Stadium and Bradenton’s LECOM Park. This annual ritual draws thousands of visitors here each spring, and how exciting to know that by the final game of spring 2019 we’ll be cheering on the Atlanta Braves even closer to home, when the team’s new $100 million spring training stadium complex opens in the West Villages development. That’s a real game changer (if you’ll pardon the pun) for our area; I can’t wait.

In the meantime, enjoy your own spring and summer adventures before we publish an issue of Venice Magazine again in the fall.  

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