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Hit the Great Outdoors  – in Your Own Backyard

From coast to coast, families will camp out on June 22

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n June 22, dust off the sleeping bags, pitch that tent and gear up for the Great American Backyard Campout. As part of the National Wildlife Federation’s “Be Out There” movement, the one-night event encourages families to get outside and connect with nature. Whether camping in your own yard or at a nearby park, outdoor time makes kids happier and healthier, according to the NWF. And there’s no need to limit your backyard camping to only June 22 this summer. Shasta Rogers, a Buford mom of two, makes it a point for her whole family to camp in its own backyard two or three times every summer. “My husband isn’t as adventurous as I am, so our own campground is as far as I’ve gotten him to venture out,” Rogers says. “We have wildlife – rabbits, deer, squirrels, possum and the neighborhood cat – right in our backyard. And we don’t have to bother packing the car,” she says. “We pitch tents, cook on our fire pit and play neon putt putt golf and other outdoor activities.” Rogers appreciates another aspect of backyard camping: being able to use her own bathroom. The NWF reports that “thousands” of families across the nation participated in the Great American Backyard Campout last year. The organization asks families to officially register for the June 22 campout. It’s free to sign up, and by doing so you’ll gain access to a full camping guide, fun fireside recipes, nocturnal wildlife guides, nature games and more. Visit backyardcampout.org The NWF is America’s largest conservation organization and works to promote the outdoors and protect wildlife. Learn more at nwf.org. – Taniqua Russ Cont’d on page 36

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June 2013    Atlanta Parent 35

June 2013  

Plan a Camping Adventure, What Dads Do Best, Cool Places to Get Wet, 65 Days of Summer Fun