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Make Your Own Adventure Club and Get Outside!

outdoor-club-adventure

As a kid you were probably forced outdoors at some point during the day to play outside and get your energy out. You probably noticed as you got older that now, if you want to get outside time you have to provide it for yourself. And if you live in an apartment or the city you may not be able to get quality outdoors time just by going into your backyard. If you live in the city you might have to plan your outdoor time even more as you coordinate trips to local outdoor hot spots. Getting yourself out in nature might be easier if you form a like-minded group to get you going. With the steps and tips below you can make your own Adventure Club and explore nature with your friends!

Why Going Outside is Good for You

Get vitamin D. You can actually get vitamin D from sun exposure. Vitamin D is very important to our health and it doesn’t always come in abundance in the foods we eat. One of the best ways to get your daily dose of Vitamin D is through being outside in the sunshine. It can help you have strong bones and protect you from certain diseases and ailments. Improves your immune system.
Opportunity to exercise. Unless you’re sitting in a chair it’s hard not to exercise at least a little whenever you go outside. And every ounce of exercise contributes to your overall health! Even a short stroll outside can do wonders for your physical health.
Elevate your mood. A lot of things about being outside can give your mood a healthy boost. The light, the sun, the fresh air, or the flowers and trees can help you feel a little better about the world if you give them the chance. But there are also studies to support this idea. The National Institute of Health (NIH) found in a study of theirs that just walking outside for a bit each day boosts creativity by 81%. Who knows what creative potential you might unleash just by getting yourself outside a little each day!
Good for children. Studies show that being outdoors helps kids focus better. Spending at least an hour outside every day can increase their focus, overall wellbeing, and help them get better grades.
It can be easy to let kids go run around outside and get all the exercise and vitamin D they need, but as we get older it can become harder to find time to get outside. One way to make getting outside easier is to give your outdoor time some kind of purpose.

  • Exercise outside.
  • Go for a daily stroll at the same time.
  • Get outdoor furniture. Once you have some place to set up camp outside, it can be easier to take things you normally do indoors, outdoors while you soak up some sunshine.
  • Make your outside time a group activity by creating your own outdoors club!

outside-nature

What Kind of Outdoor Club Do You Want to Do?

There are many things to do outside and everyone has different interests. Some people really like swimming, or hiking, or kayaking. What outdoor activities most interest you? These are the things you’ll want to incorporate in the purpose of your outdoors club. Having a clear purpose for your club will help a lot once you start bringing other people into the group and involving them in planning.
You can focus on one thing. You can make it a club all about just one thing you know you like to do:

  • Skiing
  • Hiking
  • A sport
  • Swimming
  • Camping
  • Backpacking
  • Running
  • Kayaking
  • Biking

Or you can involve many outdoor activities. Instead of making a hiking group, you can decide to make an adventure club! That way you can plan activities around all things adventuresome.

Whatever the purpose of your outdoor club, you’ll also want to keep in mind who you want to invite to the group and the level of difficulty everyone will be ok with. For instance, hikes and trails are often ranked by difficulty. They can be considered easy, moderate, or hard. So while you are deciding your club’s purpose remember to also consider the level of experience and difficulty you want to involve, and remember to disclose these things to those you invite to the group.

Who Do You Want in the Group?

Outdoor groups can be for all groups of people! You can make no restrictions about who can join the club, or you can decide to make your group exclusive in some way. For example, if you’re a dad looking to bond with your kids through fishing, you might make a fishing club specifically for dads and their kids. You can also restrict the group to certain age groups, like if you’re interested in getting to know more people your age.

Logistics

The last thing you’ll want to figure out before publishing your new group is all the logistics. Below are a couple questions to consider and make decisions about before going live with your new club idea.

  • How are people going to get places?
  • How are you going to get equipment?
  • How will your group stay in contact?

Maybe you’ll expect everyone to use their own cars and equipment to get places, or maybe you’ll want to talk to local rental places for any equipment your group might need. You can also keep in contact with your group in many ways. If you all know each other you can simply create a group text message. Or you can make a Facebook group, or use other messaging apps like Slack, or GroupMe. There are almost infinite options nowadays for where to keep your group’s base of operations.
flyer-outdoors-club

Now that you have your group all set up you can start reaching out for people to start joining. One great way to get members is to create a public Facebook group online. You can also try inviting some people you know and ask them to bring a member or two of their own.

You can also make flyers to hang up around town to meet new people! A flyer doesn’t have to be complicated, just make sure it has all the information they’ll need.

Fun Ideas

There are endless ways you can really have fun with getting more involved in your community and getting to know new people through starting a club like this.

  • Bring snacks.
  • Have a group potluck event.
  • Be educational. You can make a presentation about outdoor etiquette, safety, or hire a trial guide to teach your group about different plants you come across during your hike.
  • Do volunteer work every other month. You can volunteer to clean up a place you visit.
  • Make a website, a blog, or social media accounts for your group and post about the trips and activities you do!

Other Good Ideas

  • Have regular meetings.
  • Assign responsibilities to different people. You can nominate different group members to be the President, Vice President, Trip Coordinator, Treasurer, or Social Media Manager.
  • Fundraise for your trips. You can have a group yard sale or bake off to save up money for your bigger trips or activities. Sometimes your outdoor adventures are going to require fast funds while you’re in between paychecks. If your Adventure group finds itself short on cash, you can always get a payday loan or a personal loan from Check City and pay it back when you return from your trip.

Getting yourself outside is important. The great outdoors are meant to be appreciated and can shower you with mental and physical benefits. You don’t have to go through the trouble of making an outdoor club to get outside, but it can help motivate you to make going outside more of a habit, and who knows! You might just make some great new friends along the way.


READ MORE
Read all about vitamin D and it’s health benefits.
 
Check out another Check City Blog article, “Getting Outside This Spring” to learn some other great ways to get outdoors more often!
 
FEATURE IMAGE BY PETER CONLAN
OTHER IMAGES BY BLAKE LISK

4 Great Thanksgiving Service Ideas

Serving Others on Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is quickly approaching, and it is a prime time to serve others who are less fortunate. This is typically one of the most popular times of the year for volunteer work. With all of the celebrations, gifts, and heavy meals, it is a great time to lend a hand to those who are less fortunate. The holiday season can be a very difficult time for many people, so this can be a great time to perform service.

Helping others brings a sense of happiness and worth no matter your circumstances. Whether you have an abundance to share, or are struggling and need to get a sense of perspective for your own life, serving others can be a great way to ground yourself and find peace during the holidays. There are so many different ways to serve others. Here are some great Thanksgiving service ideas:

Soup Kitchens

Consider volunteering at a local soup kitchen to help feed the poor and homeless. Soup kitchens are always looking for people to help setup the service area, collect the food, prepare and serve the food. The kitchens are always grateful for helpers, and usually offer flexible schedules and roles. You can spend the day helping others feel a critical sense of connection.

Meals on Wheels

Deliver meals to the elderly in need. You can usually find opportunities at local churches or organizations to deliver meals to the elderly or others. For a small investment of your time, you can help make a family feel connected and happy during the holidays.

Visiting

Visit people in nursing homes or hospitals. You can call a nursing home, or hospital, and ask if they have someone who might need company on Thanksgiving. By determining the age and health of the people you’ll visit, you can tailor your visit to their needs. For instance, you might talk, sing, or enjoy a meal with the residents. Consider taking a small gift to make someone’s day a little brighter.

Fundraise

You can be part of a fundraising opportunity for your holiday. You can participate in a race and raise money for a good cause. If you aren’t up to running the 5K, consider volunteering at the event. You can contribute to a good cause and enjoy the air!

There are many great Thanksgiving service ideas. From fundraising to soup kitchens, the opportunities are amazing. Each offers a sense of well-being and connectedness that can ground you into your own life and make you grateful for your own set of challenges. Thank you for reading, we hope you have enjoyed these Thanksgiving service ideas.

Helping Others and Yourself by Giving Frugally

The recent so labeled Superstorm Sandy has brought as much hope and evidences of the human spirit to individuals as it has brought damage and destruction to the affected areas. The storm has brought together helping hand from all walks of life and has forced communities to band together in an effort to help each other persevere through this hard time. Sandy has also played a role in reminding people across the country that charitable services are more than something nice to contribute to occasionally but are also valued and necessary for those less fortunate and in need.

This powerful storm that has caused so much damage has brought out the good of human nature. Caring and helping have become the standard whereas selfishness and greed have been shelved. With the holiday season approaching, people across the country hope to see this trend of lifting others increase and efforts to do so are cropping up around the nation.

For those with a strict budget, however, the opportunity to donate to charitable institutions may seem like a financial incapability. For those who find themselves in the predicament to donate but who are not sure if they can afford it, or for those who wish to be frugal while still helping others, consider some alternative ways to donate to various charities. One way to give a meaningful donation to a charity without having to write a massive check is by giving of one’s self.

Giving of your time to help volunteer in any capacity with any charity is one way to donate value without donating monetary value. And in many ways, spending the time to help is in many ways is more rewarding than writing a big check.

Another helpful donation to charities beyond giving simple money is be donating unwanted or expendable possessions such as old clothes or furniture to those institutions that can use them to better the lives of others.

By giving of one’s time and possessions, an individual or family who wish to remain financially responsible and frugal while giving to others can be of as much more help to the needy as those who donate finances only.

 

Helping Others and Yourself by Giving Frugally

3 Great Ways to Help Utahns in Need

Are you interested in lending a helping hand to homeless individuals in need? If so, below are three thoughtful and simple ways you can help to make a difference in Utah’s community. Start to help Utahns in need today!

1) Volunteer at a Soup Kitchen

Soup kitchens provide warm, free meals to those who are in need and volunteers are a key ingredient for the soup kitchens success. Because soup kitchens are typically non-profit organizations, volunteers are very important for many tasks. For example:

  • Meal preparation
  • Serving guests
  • Acting as a source of employment
  • Fundraising and securing financial donations
  • Assisting in needs throughout the day
  • Donating food, clothing, etc.
  • Working with small children
  • Assisting in special events
  • Much more

Most soup kitchens will accept volunteers on the spot as well as any extra food you would like to bring. Volunteering at a soup kitchen is a great way to help Utahns in need.

2) Volunteering at Food Pantries and/or Food Banks

Food banks and pantries are organizations where food (typically basic, non-perishable items) are freely given to those in need. Thanks to nationwide organizations like, food banks help feed millions of people every year. Though donating food and money is a great way to give back, you can also volunteer at one of Utah’s food banks.

3) Donate

Look around you right now. What items do you see than are meaningless to you, but may be of value to another? Consider donating items like clothing, books, computers and other learning material to local homeless shelters in Utah and organizations.

Books and computers provide forms of entertainment for individuals in shelters and also allow them to explore and learn. With limited access to these resources, shelters greatly appreciate any donations. Consider contacting your local shelter to discuss their needs and shortages so you can tailor you delivery to their needs.

Check City is happy and proud to help support volunteers of people in need. To learn more about how you can lend a helping hand or to access more helpful information, visit the following websites:

 

Giving Back By Volunteering

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