Two words: crazy good. Camping at the Presidio? Playing on Crissy Field? I’m going to argue this Outdoor Nation Summit was rocking the best view of the outdoors. We wrapped up the summer’s Summit series in style.
We rolled in Friday morning to our big outdoor tent at Fort Scott at the Presidio, amped to talk about Outdoor Rights and Responsibilities where we added guaranteed funding for conservation and fostering outdoor communities to the long list of priorities from other Summits. Friday night started with a great concert from the New Wilderness Project (thanks, REI!), and then our own dance party (sorry, Denver kids, it may have even been cooler than yours).
Pouring out of the tents, we came into Saturday ready to talk about outdoor issues. Staying warm by drinking lots of tea and wrapping ourselves in blankets (San Fran is COLD, man, and I’m from Maine!), we decided on four major issues: need for community gear libraries, outdoor education in schools, leaders that youth can relate to, and access to outdoor places.
Then we hopped on over to Crissy Field for a little rock climbing and screen printing with The North Face, life sized-jenga with Merrell, and fun from many more organizations, including the Forest Service (who gave out rad messenger bags for learning about outdoor careers and opportunities. Saturday night was our campfire shindig with The North Face- and we loved hearing inspirational stories from Ambassadors Peter Croft, Ryan Hudson, and Juan Martinez.
On Sunday we cranked out some great projects- and we’re going to fund some incredible opportunities for young people- including a cultural heritage canoe building project in SE Alaska (so cool!) and fostering community in Central CA between youth and elderly by being outdoors and doing yard-work (how creative!). We’re gonna start a gear library called GORP! And, we’re going to work on getting an outdoor focus into a Big Brother/Big Sister program. We also had a great jobs panel discussion from SmartWool, National Parks Service, Forest Service, and the Student Conservation Association- it helped us start thinking about all different types of outdoor careers.
Thanks to the Fuzzy Yetis, Environmental Justice League, Womping Wombats, and so many more of you crazy table groups for keeping it fun and fresh. And nice work, Outdoor Nation, you successfully pulled off five incredible Summits in the summer of 2011. Now let’s get cracking on some projects.
-Lindsay Bourgoine, Outdoor Nation Ambassador