Wow! Dayton’s Five Rivers MetroParks system is truly awesome. Seriously, the Dayton community has established itself as the Boulder of the Midwest. We attended the 4th annual Gearfest this past weekend, and were really blown away by the rich variety of facilities, activities, and outdoor experiences that are managed and facilitated by Metroparks. Gearfest was sponsored by Subaru, one of our Leave No Trace sponsors, and we setup our booth with our Tribeca billboard in Subaru Village next to Yakima, American Canoe Association, EarthJoy Tree Climbers and the festival’s main performance stage.
There was an opening program on Friday night, and we were busy at the Leave No Trace booth from the outset. Excellent bluegrass music on Saturday kept us dancing as we chatted up the steady stream of Gearfest visitors. We had terrific interactions with the representative from National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS), one of our educational partners, Subaru reps, Miami Valley Geocachers, Yakima racks, and many others. It was great to hear the locals excitedly tell us about the outdoor activities that are readily accessible in the Dayton area, and the outstanding leadership of MetroParks in facilitating outdoor stewardship, education and programming.
One of the things that really impressed us was the number of youth-oriented activities that MetroParks promoted at Gearfest. Even more impressive was the number of youth that actually turned out to show-off their skills or try their hands at slacklining, skateboarding, snowboarding, frisbee golf, kayaking, tree climbing, and much more. It was fantastic to see so many kids totally immersed in outdoor activities. They were having off-the-chain fun and their enthusiasm was infectious. We're now thinking that maybe Boulder is the Dayton of the Rockies!
Thanks to the exemplary Five Rivers MetroParks crew for their assistance, especially Tom, Alex, Dan, and Greg. It's clear that the MetroParks folks are dialed into the Leave No Trace ethic.
Hoping to see you with happy feet at the next fest,
Peggy and Barrett