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Susquehanna Life

Our Natural World: 4 Creative Ways to Celebrate Great Outdoors Month

In 1998, President Clinton launched “Great Outdoors Week,” seven days to celebrate our relationship with nature in all of its facets—recreation, art, therapy, conservation and more. The initiative was so popular it blossomed into Great Outdoors Month in June. 

4 Creative Ways to Celebrate Great Outdoors Month

June is Great Outdoors Month, a time to highlight the many benefits of active fun outdoors and the shared resources of our parks, forests, refuges and other public lands and waters. In honor of the month, we explore five different, creative ways to get outside. Change into your outdoors clothes and join us!

  1. Nature Hike – June 13, 2020 is National Get Outdoors Day. Join your DCNR Park Naturalist for a 5-mile nature hike through Ridley Creek State Park, in Media, Pa., from 9 a.m. to 12 noon, to celebrate. Explore birds, trees, wildflowers and park history along the way. Wear good walking shoes, and bring water and snacks. Binoculars are a fun addition. No registration required. Meet at Park Office. (Call first to make sure it’s still happening.)

  2. Take Photographs - By helping you actively connect with your surroundings, nature photography is a great way to overcome that feeling of not knowing what to do outside. And you don’t have to be Ansel Adams to do it. By following some basic tips, you’ll soon be taking shots that may surprise you. You don’t have to invest in expensive equipment to take quality photos: to start, look no further than your smartphone. And with sharing sites like Instagram, you can acquire a following for your work and connect with other nature lovers in no time.

  3. Become a Dog Walker - There’s no better way to enjoy the outdoors than sharing it with a furry friend. If you don’t want the full-time responsibility of owning a pet, become a dog walker! With sites like Wag and Rover, you can create a profile, list your location and availability, download an application, and accept the walking jobs that work best for you. Besides the fun of canine bonding, you’ll have the added bonus of making a little money to spend on your next big outdoor excursion.

  4. Let the Kids Call the Shots - In these days of playdates and over-organized everything, unstructured play is exactly what your children need for their physical, emotional and cognitive well-being. And it can be contagious for adults, too. Take your child—or niece, nephew, cousin or grandchild—outside and tell them, you’re in charge. It may take a bit to get going, but before you know it, you’ll be turning a boulder into a medieval castle, wading in a stream or creating new dance moves in a field. 

The more we interact with the outdoors, the more we create an emotional connection with nature. From there, preserving the environment becomes a natural gesture of caring, rather than another arduous task to add to our already-busy schedules. 

More Ideas to Get you Outside

  • Visit a state park
  • Volunteer as a summer camp counselor
  • Take an outdoor photography class
  • Sign up for a Northern Lights tour
  • Learn how to identify birds and go birding
  • Share your enthusiasm and take a group of students on a nature hike
  • Become a Big Brother or Big Sister and lead a group nature bike trail

Share your ideas on social media using #GreatOutoorsMonth

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