Join the Wild Women of Women Outdoors, Inc.

Courtesy of Women Outdoors, Inc.

Courtesy of Women Outdoors, Inc.

I was pondering this the other day as I was sitting in class wishing I was enjoying the crisp sunshine of a beautiful Florida fall day so I decided to take it upon myself to find ways to jump-start a love for the wilderness.  Of course, in order to do that, I stayed inside and “Googled” a solution.

I was happy to come across a good “.org” site which every journalist and blogger knows is a legitimate source.  This website is called 

The website itself is green-hued and filled with pictures of life-vested, hiking boot-donning, smiling women engaging in my favorite sorts of activities: hiking, kayaking, fishing, you name it.  As I read on, I found that Women Outdoors, Inc. is a “nonprofit, all-volunteer organization” founded in 1980.

Courtesy of Women Outdoors, Inc.

Courtesy of Women Outdoors, Inc.


This chapter explores Big Cypress National Preserve, the Intercoastal Waterway (my neck of the woods, ya’ll), the Everglades, and the Florida Keys.  At only $30 a year for dues and $15 for students ages 18 to 25, these opportunities are tough to beat. 

Each year on Memorial Day weekend, the group gets together for their national conference called “The Gathering” in which all region join together to engage in activities ranging from knot-tying to kayaking to Tai Chi.

This year’s Gathering will be held at Sargent Center in southern New Hampshire.

In addition to The Gathering conference each year, Women Outdoors encourages members to attend a service-based trip called “Women Outdoors: Unleashed!”  In the past, this trip has included involvement in Habitat for Humanity in New Orleans in 2007 as well as fund-raising hikes such as Wilderness Heals for the Elizabeth Stone House in 2008.

The group encourages women to speak their ideas for Unleashed! trips for the future.  By emailing and providing them with materials on the service or volunteer organization you would like to help benefit, the next trip could be your idea. 

The organization’s mission statement explains their dedication to promotion and education of the outdoors to women and to helping preserve the world’s natural resources.  With over 400 members, Women Outdoors is a great resource for ladies interested in nature. 



Spring Break: 5 Splashing Fun Things to Do!

OWC John

My friend John at Orlando Watersports Complex.

If you’re anything like me, you’re plan for Spring Break is to bust out the bikini and lose that winter pale you’ve been sporting for way too long.  But why limit yourself to beach tanning when there are plenty of other ways to find yourself outdoors while you’re on Spring Break?

1. Rent a KAYAK!  Kayaks are fun, self-propelled boats that are easy to become the captain of.  A double-sided paddle that requires a rotating motion pushes water back while sending you forward on the water.  Exploring a local lake, river, stream, brook or riding the ocean waves can be relaxing, healthy and fun in that springtime sunshine.

2. Try wakeboarding!  When I was in 9th grade, my best friend Bennett was really into wakeboarding.  Wakeboarding is a more modern alternative that finds itself in the water skiing genre of activities.  For the most part, a wakeboard is a snowboard for water.  The catch is you need a motor boat to pull you UNLESS you find yourself in the Orlando area where you can rent a board and ride motorized cables that will pull you around at Orlando Watersports Complex (OWC).

3.  Enjoy a beach cookout!  More often than not, public beaches sport pavilions out front with a charcoal grill assiKey Largo Manateegned to each one.  Stake your claim at one of these pavilions with a bunch of friends, grab a bag of charcoal from your local Wal-mart along with some hotdogs and you’re good to go.   Nothing beats a messy cookout with a public shower!

4. Visit the manatees.  These fat and friendly Florida natives will welcome you with placid, whiskered faces anywhere they can find warm water.  If you’re in my neck of the woods, say hello to the manatees of the Manatee Observation and Education Center in Ft. Pierce!  You’ll even have an opportunity to check out the museum and donate a little monetary love to these beautiful and humorous endangered creatures.

5. Go for a beach side jog!  There’s no need to lose that beach bod before break even ends so get your sneakers on and challenge yourself to run from one beach to another.  You’ll be soaking up the sun and making room for an ice cream cone after!