Green Friday — Opt Outside on Black Friday


Give a slew of shiny, gold stars to REI this November for their campaign #OptOutside. I am super grateful that a corporation is promoting healthy bodies and healthy relationships for this Thanksgiving holiday weekend.

If you are unfamiliar with the campaign, REI is choosing to close its doors on Black Friday to allow their employees to go enjoy the outdoors. They are encouraging their customers to do the same.

Along the same lines, both Mt Rainier National Park and Olympic National Park are making this post-Thanksgiving Friday a fee free day. The parks are hoping to help families establish some new traditions hiking and exploring the outdoors this holiday weekend. Read more about these parks’ fee free day in the Seattle Times article:

Day after Thanksgiving will be fee-free at Olympic, Rainier national parks

I am elated to see two separate organizations promote outdoor exercise, play, and bonding this holiday season. I love Thanksgiving. I love the tradition of spending time with loved ones; both family and friends. Time with our loved ones is a cornerstone for our health, as well as time in nature.

The entire foundation of Chinese medicine views the human body as a microcosm of the larger, natural world. It is my hope that we all jump on the bandwagon of ‘Green Friday’ (coined by Olympic National Park Superintendent Sarah Creachbaum), and go walking, hiking, snowshoeing, and/or playing outdoors this post-Thanksgiving Friday. Cheers to some good conversation with good company outdoors this holiday!



If you’d like to take your microcosm out into the macrocosm of nature and live in Eastern Washington, here are some local outdoor ideas:

South Fork of the Walla Walla Trail

Take Hwy 11 to the south edge of Milton-Freewater.
Head east onto the Walla Walla River Road (signs towards Harris County Park).
Follow for 13 miles to Harris Park, and continue past about a half-mile on a dirt road to the trailhead maintained by the Bureau of Land Management. You’ll see a couple restrooms.

For an extremely easy outdoor trip, head over to Bennington lake for a walk or jog around the lake. 

If we have enough snow for some cross country skiing or snowshoeing, consider checking out Horsehoe Prairie up near Tollgate, OR.

Other Trail Options in the Walla Walla Area (note: please use your discretion when picking a trail to follow from any internet website, read up on it, make sure you have clear driving directions, plenty of snacks, water, and a warm blanket in your car..just in case).

If you are up for longer drives, Palouse Falls is gorgeous any time of year and has a short trail walking behind and up to the falls. Trails along the Lostine River and the Wallowas also offer plenty of variety in the Enterprise, Lostine, and Joseph, OR areas.


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