Did you catch the winter blahs? Here are a few ways to get off the sofa and head outdoors for some fun and fitness.

Right out your window are colorful jewels just waiting to be discovered. It might be winter, but there are many beautiful songbirds that reside in Kansas throughout the cold months, no matter how much snow falls. Grab a pair of binoculars and a birding field guide or download an app to educate yourself on our feathered friends. Learn more at birdinginkansas.com or ksbirds.org.

When was the last time you zoomed down a snow-covered hill on a sled? Layer up with some winter clothing and dash out to a nearby park with your kids or grandkids to feel that adrenaline rush again. Next, you can initiate a neighborhood-wide snowman-building contest.

If you are inclined to enjoy a more subdued winter excursion, the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop in Olathe offers horse-drawn sleigh rides (snow conditions permitting). Journey back to pioneer days and revel in days of yore when majestic draft animals adorned with jingle bells made for a truly unique winter experience. mahaffie.org

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Every year, Christmas bird counts are conducted throughout Kansas, with summary statistics used for national population dynamics research. Volunteers are always welcome, regardless of knowledge or experience level. Seven Audubon Society chapters in Kansas and other informal groups participate. It is not uncommon for experts to identify up to 100 bird species in a day. You might even catch a glimpse of spectacularly plumaged hawks and golden eagles.

audubonofkansas.org  |  ksbirds.org