Ryan Rager's job is a walk in the park.
The Warrington Township man was recently assigned manager of 85-acre Sam Lewis State Park in Lower Windsor Township, a post that includes the 224-acre Susquehannock State Park in Lancaster County.
The parks overlook the Susquehanna River and its gorge, both offering some of the most gorgeous views the area has to offer.
Rager, 32, was promoted from his post as assistant manager of Gifford Pinchot State Park and started the new job Aug. 22, he said.
He'll divide his time between the two parks, also serving as liaison to the Lower Susquehanna Conservation Landscape, a conservation initiative to protect the greenway along the river, according to the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
Rager's plans include adding more focus on environmental education at Sam Lewis. There is no educator stationed at the park, but Rager said he will work with a regional park environmentalist who services Sam Lewis to develop more educational programs.
Other than that, everything will stay the same. And that, he said, is a good thing.
The park is highly visited by families who want to fly kites or use the picnic pavilion or ball fields, he said. Sam Lewis also serves as a community center for residents who want to walk pets or jog, he said.
Much of the job involves simple maintenance, and he'll oversee a small crew of workers who keep the park in top condition. The typical day will start with a lap around the park to identify downed branches and address anything "that sticks out" on the grounds, he said.
Though managerial responsibilities include some office work, Rager said he's most excited about the outdoors and the park visitors.
"Since I'm new, it's nice to meet the people who use the park," he said. "And both parks are very beautiful and scenic."
Rager's predecessor, Andrew St. John, was recently named manager of the Canoe Creek State Park Complex in Blair County.
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