Celebrating Great Outdoors Month

Paved walking trail leading into woods.
Source: Canva

June is the month that invites us to step outside, breathe in the fresh air, and immerse ourselves in the wonders of the natural world. It is known as Great Outdoors Month, a time to celebrate and appreciate the abundant beauty and recreational opportunities nature offers. Great Outdoors Month looks to promote conservation efforts, preservation of natural spaces, and outdoor activities. By designating a whole month to honor the outdoors, we should engage in more activities in nature and focus on preserving nature. 

There are several benefits of spending time in nature. For one, they can help you become more active. It’s a natural way to engage in physical activity without putting much thought into it. Whether it’s hiking, swimming, biking, or walking down a path, they all promote active lifestyles and can enhance overall fitness levels. Being surrounded by nature can also put you in a better mood and it can also be good for your mental well-being. Spending time outdoors helps reduce stress, anxiety, and depression while boosting mood and self-esteem. The tranquility and serenity of natural environments have a calming effect, allowing us to disconnect from the demands of everyday life and appreciate the beauty around us. 

Although doing activities outside can be good for your health, this month also gives us time to understand the importance of preserving the beauty of nature for future generations. A lot of the time we get so caught up in our lives and jobs that we do not take time to truly appreciate what nature has to offer. When you take time to see the national parks and trails, you realize these are sights that should be preserved for as long as possible. The good news is everyone can play a role in preserving the wildlife on our planet. You can take a more hands-on approach by volunteering with conservation programs and participating in cleanup initiatives, tree planting activities, or wildlife monitoring programs. You could also make small changes to your everyday life to decrease your waste output by doing things like carpooling, recycling, or using less electricity.  

Great Outdoors Month serves as a reminder of the profound impact nature has on our well-being and the importance of preserving our natural spaces. By taking the time to explore the outdoors, engage in outdoor activities, and contribute to conservation efforts, we not only benefit personally but also play a role in ensuring the sustainability of our planet. Let us embrace the beauty of nature this month and beyond, making a lasting connection with the great outdoors. 

A great way to celebrate Great Outdoors Month is with Maryland’s State Parks! Learn more about the Maryland Department of Natural Resources’ (DNR) Accessibility Resources and the Universal Disability Pass. You can also visit Independence Now’s Disability Resource Directory and select the Arts, Leisure, and Entertainment category for a list of local organizations that offer accessibility outdoor experiences.

Celebrating Great Outdoors Month
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