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Big birthday for Sandhills State Park

For sixty years, the Monahans Sandhills have been exciting tourists and locals.

MONAHANS, TX (KWES) - For sixty years, the Monahans Sandhills have been exciting tourists and locals.

"The Sandhills has been a place people have been coming to play for hundreds of years,' said park Regional Interpretive Specialist Cassie Honolka. "It's just a center point of the community and has been for a long time."

The parks superintendent Michael Smith said days like Saturday are to show how proud he and his staff are to serve the visitors, and hope it attracts more to realize what's in their backyard.

"It gets our name out there," said Smith. "Hopefully people will come out here when it's free, when we're offering something a little extra. They'll recognize it's a beautiful park, they'll recognize it's worth coming back to see and they'll come back. With their families and their friends."

The days events began early Saturday morning, which included sand art classes, solar observing, animal tracking and more, capping it off Saturday night.

Although he is the current superintendent of the park, Smith doesn't take all the credit, in fact he said the park staying open this long is due to the past superintendents and so much more.

"The community has made this possible," said Smith. "Community members, families, businesses have supported this park for 60 years."

But it's not just about celebrating how long they've been open.

"When you provide a recreational opportunity," said Smith. "When you provide a place for families to go. It just warms my heart to see generations of families to come out to this same place. You know, I speak to people my parents age all the time that bring their kids and their grandkids back out here. It was their favorite memory and they want to make that same sort of memory for their kids."

Smith said though the park doesn't officially turn 60 until November, this is the only planned birthday event.

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