UPDATE Sept. 1, 2020: FIND Outdoors has suspended programming. Click here for more information on remotely guided/virtual tours with Natural Wanders.
Staying home never felt so good. Natural Wanders and FIND Outdoors are bringing the natural beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains to the world in an effort to foster a sense of calmness and community. Virtual forest bathing and nature therapy walks will take place Saturdays, alternating between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. EST, hosted live via Zoom by Kelly Bruce, a certified forest therapy guide.
The Japanese art of forest bathing, or Shinrin Yoku, is the restorative practice of immersing oneself in nature, inviting healing for the body and mind. From the comfort of their own yard or living room, participants will quiet their minds and awaken their senses with a guided meditation and a slow, gentle walk. A series of thoughtfully crafted activities invite participants to experience nature in a new way. The event culminates in a virtual tea ceremony where everyone can share their observations and experiences.
FIND Outdoors, formerly the Cradle of Forestry Interpretive Association, has devoted half a century to education and recreation in the outdoors through partnerships and community involvement. “FIND Outdoors is entering a new era of education and we’re excited to bring this innovative practice to the global community,” says Natalie Britt, Find Outdoors’ executive director. “Our priority is the health of our visitors, program participants and staff. Virtual forest bathing and nature therapy enables us to continue fulfilling our mission safely and in a socially responsible manner. We look forward to offering virtual experiences during this pandemic and beyond.”
“These are unprecedented times and we need nature and community now more than ever,” Bruce explains. “Virtual forest bathing is a wonderful form of self-care for people of all ages and abilities. While technology is bringing us together, the idea is to unplug and connect to the land in your own backyard. Sharing this experience simultaneously with people around the world builds a sense of togetherness and well-being.”
Detailed instructions on how to participate are provided upon registration. Donations are accepted and appreciated to ensure that FIND Outdoors can continue providing the public with connections to our natural world. Register at GoFINDOutdoors.org.
About FIND Outdoors
FIND Outdoors, formerly Cradle of Forestry in America Interpretive Association, is a 47-year-old 501(c)(3) nonprofit headquartered in Pisgah Forest, NC at the entrance to Pisgah National Forest. FIND’s mission promotes educational, recreational and interpretive opportunities about forest and water resources, natural history, and the Cradle of Forestry in America. FIND Outdoors serves approximately 800,000 visitors each year with over 150 educational and recreational programs, special events, and tours. It manages 21 recreation, education and camping facilities in North Carolina, Georgia and Indiana; offers to the public environmental education programs and forest-related gifts, educational books and other resources; and provides partnership opportunities for the health, safety and education of all forest users on local and regional public and private lands. Learn more at GoFINDOutdoors.org.
Welcome! I'm Kelly Bruce, a certified nature and forest therapy guide. Read on for inspiration to help you improve your overall wellbeing, naturally!