Articles in the Reflections Category
What happens when you bring together outdoor retail giants, a major conservation non-profit in the US, researchers from top universities, a prominent DC advocate, a National Park ranger, a group of 13 African Americans with fire in their hearts for nature, crowd funding, volunteers – and me, a social entrepreneur from Oakland, California…
The Outdoor Afro Leadership Team training weekend!
Even though it has been well over a week, I am still feeling the high of gratitude and moments where I ask myself did that really happen? Did such a diverse group of …
Campfire, Camping, Gear, Reflections »
Sometimes things just don’t go according to the plan.
You can buy or borrow almost any product that adapts to an outdoor lifestyle and experience, but sometimes oversight, lack of experience, or unexpected weather conditions can cause the best laid camping plans to run afoul.
Like forgetting a can opener when camp meals depend on canned goods or arriving at camp to find the tent poles never made it into the car, and heaven forbid there is no wine or bottle opener!
I’ve lived through a few camping mishaps of my own.
Rue Mapp, …
Celebrities, Diversity, Events, Hip Hop, Outreach, Reflections, Retail »
What an amazing week! Just got back from Outdoor Retailer Winter Market, the largest outdoor industry show in the country that occurs twice yearly in Salt Lake City, Utah.
In a proud and humble moment for Outdoor Afro, we received the Outdoor Industry Inspiration Award, presented by adidas Outdoor, in the company category pared down by industry vote from over fifty esteemed and well-established organizations, including our rockin’ partner and supporter REI.
Check out the press release here.
I feel the award is shared by all the people who make up the Outdoor …
Agriculture, Career, Gardening, History, Nature, Parks, Place, Reflections, Rivers, Urban Nature »
Greetings Outdoor Afros:
I’m Morgan Powell and this is my fifth blog here at Outdoor Afro. I’m the founder of Bronx River Sankofa – a documentary series on Cable TV and Facebook featuring African-American environmentalists from New York City’s greenest borough. Many male Harlem Renaissance writers and other 20th century brothers-on-a-soap-box wrote about the invisible man phenomenon or mistaken identity in general stemming from low expectations by others of men of African descent. The playful piece you are about to read contrasts a photo-documentary of my busiest days when I was …
Outdoor Afro Leader Reginald Mitchell
As many of you know, this year marks a big transition as I fully embraced Outdoor Afro as an important part of my purpose, and since, the quality of my life has improved as it allows me to spend more time enjoying my family, and nature! But beyond the scope of my personal life, for me Outdoor Afro represents a chance to help make a positive difference for the world, and I am grateful for each friend and colleague who believed in this vision and cheered …
Holidays, Reflections »
I am so grateful for you, and the forward evolution of Outdoor Afro. Together, we are a part of an amazing and diverse community who love and advocate for connections to nature. To be of service to this cause is a true gift, and I am thankful to be on this journey with all of you.
Here is another fun glimpse into what makes this work so joyous for me:
Thank you for being a part of the Outdoor Afro community, and may you and your loved ones experience joy this …
Adventurers, Reflections, Survival Skills, Urban Nature »
Outdoor Afro friend Audrey Peterman challenges us in her latest blog to rethink our relationship to nature in terms of our ability to survive natural disaster. Read on:
Among the glaring lessons we should learn from Hurricane Sandy is that our technology-focused lifestyles depend absolutely and completely on one thing – electricity. I often marvel about this, since electricity is extremely vulnerable. One major solar flare or a catastrophic “unnatural” disaster such as Sandy, and a sustained lack of electricity could knock us back to the Stone Age in weeks.
The major problem with this is …
Adventurers, Americas Great Outdoors, Breaking the Color Barrier in the Great Outdoors, Diversity, Expedition, Hiking, Nature, Parks, Recreation, Reflections, Rivers, Uncategorized, Urban Nature, Water »
Morgan Powell is a landscape designer who edits Bronx River Sankofa on You Tube and Facebook. He is passionate about New York’s Bronx River and its African American heritage. Here is Morgan’s second submission in a three-part series to highlight the generous yet delicate resource of the Bronx River:
I’ve just taken my fellow Whole Communities alumni Audrey and Frank Peterman’s challenge to enjoy my local natural treasures. The Petermans wrote the Outdoor Afro classic Legacy on the Land. I saw a vast natural place outside of my normal travel patterns both arresting …
Conservation, Food, Gardening, Reflections, Urban Nature »
Enjoy this guest blog and trip report by Zoe Polk, an Outdoor Afro Regional Leader and a human rights attorney!
If you, like me, have been following the wonderful web series “Black Folks Don’t,” you know there are few things some of us just don’t or won’t do. From swimming to camping to yoga to winter sports, the series has been profiling activities not generally associated with Black Folk, as well as challenging our own internal biases. We at Outdoor Afro have gotten a kick out of watching this series and …
Birds, Conservation, Environment, Reflections »
This is how I began my group introduction this weekend at a summit of leading bird and travel bloggers from around the United States in Tucson, Arizona. In this crowd, I considered labeling myself a birder risky, like I might be ousted as an imposter from the group of world traveled birding experts with hundreds of species on their life lists.
But Sharon Stiteler — otherwise known as “Birdchick” challenged me.
“Do you own a pair of binoculars?” she asked.
“Um, yeah,” I said.
“And how many bird books do you own?”
I stared at …