Let's G.O.! (Get Outside) Book 2012

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Join the Party Join the Fun PLAY SERVE CELEBRATE

April 2012 Last year over 100,000 people participated in Let’s G.O! (Get Outside.) This year, we'll take another giant step toward creating healthy communities! You are the change makers – we applaud everyone who makes it possible for others to Play, Serve and Celebrate outside. This online book is a collection of “reports from the field” to help inspire people everywhere to get outside. Big thank you to all who contributed stories and photos showing how they got people outside to Play, Serve and Celebrate in 2011.

Tools and Information:

• Register Your Event • Download the Flyer & Tool Kit • Share your Photos and Stories on C&NN Connect

+ Let’s G.O.! Partners & Sponsors


Let’s G.O. Oakland Children in Nature Collaborative At Family Play Day 2011, significant outreach took place, youth were trained as play rangers, and natural materials were foraged in preparation for the event. At the Play Day, families built structures with giant palms, little ones played in the mud, and older kids spoke and moved with excitement.

Photo Š Roy Gordon

+ REAL School Gardens REAL School Gardens partners with high-poverty elementary schools to design and install school gardens, train teachers to use them to improve children s learning, and build community around them to nurture support for urban schools. We currently support learning gardens at 81 elementary schools across North Texas, providing more than 45,000 children and 2,700 teachers with daily access to impactful, hands-on learning in the outdoors. Â

Photo Š Scott Feille

Photo Š Gail Borden Library District

Ladybug Release party

Rakow Branch of the Gail Borden Library District The Library and the Elgin Community Garden Network hosted three ladybug release parties at the Rakow Branch. Families were invited to learn more about these insects and learn how ladybugs can improve a garden.

Photo Š Madeline Hart

Summer Outdoor Literacy Day Camp Logan, UT

Sponsored by YDI, Stokes Nature Center & American West Heritage Center, these camps provided underserved students the opportunity to gain literacy skills and self-confidence while enjoying the outdoors.

+ Neighborhood Clean-Up Roanoke, VA

Starting simply was the key for us. Just carrying a plastic bag and some gloves with you when you hike as a family can lead to wonderful results, such as giving other families the chance to see nature naturally.

Photo © Jon Beard

Photo © Roger Herrnsteen

Alaska's Got Mud!

Homer Nature Rocks hosted the 2nd Annual Mud Games “The Wallow” was created to give kids, teens and adults a place to play in the mud, have fun and strengthen their relationships with each other. Download the pdf Community Play in Alaska by Carmen Field to find out more at: http://www.childrenandnature.org/downloads/GG2011/PlayinAK_CarmenField.pdf

Photo © Carmen Field

+ “Demo” nature play spaces Baltimore, MD Instead of setting up a table with handouts or brochures that talk about nature play spaces, the Greater Baltimore Children and Nature Collaborative and the Parks & People Foundation installed “demo” nature play spaces at: Baltimore Green Week, Eco-festival,Baltimore Healthy Homes Festival, Flowermart, Alternate Roots Festival, Ultimate Block Party and neighborhood festivals. Download the pdf Nature Play by Mary Hardcastle at: http://www.childrenandnature.org/downloads/ GG2011/NaturePlay_byMaryHardcastle.pdf

Photo © Mary Hardcastle

Photo Š Mike Lanza


Menlo Park, California Author and blogger Mike Lanza (playborhood.com) has created a setting for his three children and neighbor children to create their own culture of neighborhood play. Day-by-day, he takes a step back as kids take more control over their own play lives.

Photo Š Local Point of View Tours

Canyon Kids Community Service Internship Florida Canyon Balboa Park, San Diego, California

Students from King Chavez High School are transforming an iceplant covered area into a native habitat for local wildlife and creating an accessible trail for park visitors.

Photo Š Elliot Dorris

Rocky Mountain Youth Corps: Work, Play, Serve Taos, New Mexico Rocky Mountain Youth Corps inspires young adults to make a difference in themselves and their communities.

Photo Š Inside the Outdoors

Martin Luther King Day of Service Rancho SoĂąado Inside the Outdoors Foundation

MLK Day is a time when families and friends can come together and serve in nature together! Projects include habitat restoration, native plant propagation, and building student teaching areas.

+ Lessons in nature s classrooms

San Diego Children and Nature Collaborative The Nearby Nature School Field Trip Guidebook is designed to help educators and naturalists use local natural areas ( nearby nature ) to meet curricular goals. Included are field trip procedures, orientation, and sample lessons.

Photo Š San Diego Children and Nature Collaborative

+ Let s G.O! Clean-Up Men of Model and BOLT Team Albany, New York

Soon to be home of a community raised-bed garden with help from our friends at The North Face and Outdoor Nation. Truly healing day... I am thankful that we here in Albany were able to to participate in our national initiative... TRULY THANKFUL … Tyrell Hughes Photo © Bro Yusuf BOLT Team and MODEL

+ Aldama Elementary School Beautification Los Angeles, CA Natural Leaders partnered with Playworks and Americorps in a collaborative effort of painting, planting and a good time outdoors. Children played, smiled and participated in giving their campus a much needed fresh look. Photo Š Amir Nia

Photo Š Carmen Field

+ Let's G.O.! Spring Family Coast Walk Nature Rocks Homer, South Central Alaska

Our youngest Coast Walker was a 3-year-old who found all sorts of tiny pieces of styrofoam and plastic that adult eyes would've missed. We documented every piece of trash found and removed over 110 pounds of marine debris.

+ Garlic Mustard Pull

Grass Lake Sanctuary Ann Arbor/Dexter, Michigan

REI and Grass Lake Sanctuary volunteers teamed up to tame the invasive garlic mustard and have some fun in the tree house.

Photo Š Tamara Wendt

“The more high‐tech our world becomes, the more we need nature in our lives. Young, old, or in between, we can reap extraordinary benefits by connecting – or reconnecting – to nature. Let’s G.O.! Get Outside, April 2012.” – Richard Louv, Founding Chairman, Children &

Nature Network and author, "Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder" and "The Nature Principle"

+ Let’s G.O.! Partners & Sponsors