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Get Outside Weekend Update -- 9/18-21

Festivals, Events, & Outings

Thursday, September 18

Friday, September 19

Saturday, September 20

Sunday, September 21

Monday, September 22

Tuesday, September 23

Wednesday, September 24

Thursday, September 25

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Pete's Pick: Explore Explore

Explore Park and the Roanoke River GorgeLast week I had the pleasure of joining a group of folks floating the Roanoke River to raise awareness of not only river issues, but also outdoor access in general (see photos of our rainy day float). We put in at Vinton and floated down Tinker Creek until it merged with the Roanoke River. We then paddled the flat-water section until we reached Niagra Dam. After a quick portage (river left) around the dam we were paddling down the Roanoke River Gorge (note: use the Blue Ridge Parkway Roanoke River Overlook access point to avoid portaging the dam).

After running the first rapid I was asking myself why it has been so long since I’ve paddled this section – it’s absolutely beautiful. For those of you haven’t floated this section, it’s a relatively short float (3 miles) with a few small rapids (class II), lush vegetation, as well as herons and bald eagles. The river was running low the day we paddled, about 2.3 feet (230 cfs), but we were able to make it down without getting hung up on any rocks. 

This section of the river passes right through the middle of Explore Park, and as we were approaching the takeout I was reminded of what an incredible asset Explore Park is.  Roanoke County Parks, Recreation and Tourism has taken over management of Explore Park and are currently accepting bids from companies to help develop a park master plan. Fingers crossed that this world-class asset becomes a world-class park.

If you want to get a personal tour of Explore Park the Blue Ridge Chapter of the Society of American Foresters are offering a free interpretive hike at Explore Park this Saturday (9/20 @ 3pm). This is your chance to enjoy a guided nature walk through the park where you will learn about the trees, soil formation, and modern forestry practices. It’s a great educational opportunity for kids and adults. But if you can’t make this hike you can still enjoy all that Explore Park has to offer on your own – hiking, biking, wildlife viewing, picnicking, paddling, fishing, and more.

Check out even more activities in the Get Outside Weekend Update.

Pete Eshelman (friend me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter)
Director of Outdoor Branding
Roanoke Regional Partnership

Check out the Outdoor Calendar for upcoming events
you need to keep your eye on!

 

 

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Want It? Try It at GO Fest

Try Fly Fishing at GO FestThe Holidays come early for outdoor lovers in the Roanoke Region in the form of the Anthem Go Outside Festival. When thousands flock to the banks of the Roanoke River on October 17-19, it will be a celebration of all things outdoors. But this will not be your typical "walk around and look at cool stuff" event. Far from it.

One of the most unique aspects of GO Fest is that festival-goers are encouraged to actively participate. In fact, the festival depends on it. This is because each vendor or organization at GO Fest will have their own unique activity at their booth or tent. Besides the fun and educational games and races, there will be plenty of opportunities to test and demo gear, try new things, and pick the brains of the experts before making a commitment to a new piece of equipment or even a new sport. 

Looking to upgrade your bike, kayak, or other big ticket outdoor item? Demo the latest models from the top brands in the industry before plunking down your hard-earned cash. And we are not talking about kicking the tires, or rubbing the plastic; take your demo bike for a spin on the trails of Mill Mountain or roll your potential new boat in the demo pool. There will even be a huge, portable pump track on the festival grounds for demos. 

Always wanted to try rock climbing or fly fishing? A portable climbing wall will be onsite, complete with climbing shoe demos, and casting instructors who can walk you through the intricacies of catching fish on the fly. 

Yes, GO Fest is all about having a great time and hanging out with other active, outdoor enthusiasts. But it is also an amazing opportunity to try a new activity or find the perfect piece of gear before swiping that credit card. 

More information on everything you can try or demo at GO Fest >>>

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Get Dirty at the Marine 5K Mud Run

Marine 5k Mud RunAre you ready for a down and dirty weekend?

The 19th Annual Marine 5k Mud Run will take place this Saturday, September 20, at Green Hill Park in Salem. 

The race may be Saturday, but there is still time to register on race day. Show up early as the number of racers is capped. 

This fun mud run is as hard or as easy as you make it. Challenge yourself to take a podium spot, or just take it one step at a time and help your fellow racers get through the obstacles. Race as an individual or as a team. The team race is a great way to get your friends, family, or even your co-workers involved. What doesn't build teamwork like sloshing through the mud? And following the Marine ethos of "Leave no man behind," every team must cross the finish line holding hands or be sent back to retrieve their comrade. 

There is even a Pollywog Jog, a shorter version of the mud course for children under 12-years-old. The Marine Mud Run is also a great spectator event, so even if you are not jumping into the mud pit or the Roanoke River, you can still come out and support all the participants. 

There will be food vendors, showers, first aid, and water stations at the finish. 

So, are you up for the challenge? 

Find out how to register >>>

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First Full-Service Outfitter Coming to Roanoke

Roanoke Mountain Adventures A new venture opening in Roanoke will become the first full-service outfitter operating in the city, providing guides, tours, transportation and more for a variety of outdoor pursuits. Roanoke Mountain Adventures is slated to open in the spring of 2015 and is owned by the father and son team of Jim and James Revercomb. 

See the full press release below:

ROANOKE, Va. (September 17, 2014) -- Roanoke Mountain Adventures will open in spring 2015 in the City of Roanoke to connect visitors and residents with a wide range of active outdoor recreation experiences. The business will be the first of its kind in the region and will provide guides, tours, transportation, and equipment for mountain biking, road cycling, kayaking, and other outdoor recreation activities.

“Roanoke Mountain Adventures wants to promote the area’s natural resources by providing services that make outdoor activities more accessible to visitors and residents,” said James Revercomb, co-owner with his father Jim. James Revercomb is a Roanoke native who has spent the past six years in Wyoming working in similar businesses.

“The work that the Roanoke Regional Partnership, local governments, and others have done to develop and promote these resources has created this opportunity to get more people out there and attract more visitors,” said Revercomb.  “The image of Roanoke as a premier outdoor recreation destination will grow stronger when we can help visitors and residents easily experience all that the region has to offer.”

“The time is right now that the region has built a reputation as an outdoor destination,” said Pete Eshelman, director of outdoor branding for the Roanoke Regional Partnership which assisted Roanoke Mountain Adventures. “It fills a gap in our goal to deliver unforgettable outdoor experiences in the Greater Roanoke Region. It will be great to get people paddling or riding with just one call."

“Roanoke is the urban center of a large region and no better place to be the launching point for residents and visitors to experience all this entire region offers,” said Mayor David Bowers.

The business will operate from Wasena Station alongside the Roanoke River Greenway.  Revercomb will be planning guided and self-guided adventures designed for a customer’s interests and skill level at outdoor venues in the greater Roanoke region.  

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Get Outside Weekend Update -- 9/11-14

Festivals, Events, & Outings

Thursday, September 11

Friday, September 12

Saturday, September 13

Sunday, September 14

Monday, September 15

Tuesday, September 16

Wednesday, September 17

Thursday, September 18

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Pete's Pick: Explore Philpott Reservoir

Philpott ReservoirIf you're looking to explore a new area then look no further than Philpott Reservoir. It’s a slice of heaven right in our backyard, just check out the virtual tour.

Philpott Reservoir is a 2,880-acre lake located in southern Franklin County. You won't find any residential development along the shoreline, but you will find numerous facilities scattered throughout the reservoir such as boat landings, campgrounds, picnic areas, beaches, and hiking trails. It’s ideal for hiking, canoeing/kayaking, fishing, and camping.

If you're up for a truly unique overnight experience, then give some thought to camping on Deer Island, which is only accessible by canoe/kayak. You’ll park at the Salthouse Branch Park, load your gear, and paddle over to the island. Don’t worry, there’s water and a toilet on the island.

But if you prefer something that requires a little less time, then go for a hike on the Philpott Dogwood Glenn Trail. This 5-mile trail stretches from Salthouse Branch at Philpott Lake to Philpott Park and gives you a great glimpse into what Philpott has to offer.

Check out even more activities in the Get Outside Weekend Update.

Pete Eshelman (friend me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter)
Director of Outdoor Branding
Roanoke Regional Partnership

Check out the Outdoor Calendar for upcoming events
you need to keep your eye on!

 

 

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Save the Date: Anthem GO Outside Festival

Anthem GO Outside Festival It's that time of year again. We are on the far side of Labor Day, meaning the summer is officially over. While it may not feel like fall exactly, the mornings are a bit crisper, and you can feel the chill in the air during a stiff breeze. 

Yes, the seasons are changing, and autumn is right around the corner, bringing pumpkin spice, vibrant leaf colors, and all the mid-layers and puffy vests in the wardrobe.

It also means Anthem GO Outside Festival is within sight!

This year's GO Fest is taking place on October 17-19 at the River's Edge Sports Complex along the banks of the Roanoke River.  

The 2014 version of GO Fest is going to be bigger and better than ever, with more races, more activities, more new stuff to try out, and more entertainment. If you are into getting outside, GO Fest is the place to be in mid-October.

No need to purchase a ticket, the entire event (minus race entries, of course) is free! So mark your calendar, post a reminder on the fridge, send yourself an e-vite, or do whatever it is you do to remind yourself that GO Fest is happening over the weekend of October 17-19. 

See you there!

Find out more about what's going down at this year's GO Fest >>>

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Primitive Trails Releases New Shirt

It may only be September, but Primitive Trails is starting the drive for Christmas donations, and they are launching a new shirt to get the ball rolling. 

Primitive Trails, founded in Roanoke, VA, operates on a very similar model.  Instead of shoes, Primitive Trails donates a piece of clothing to a child in need with every sale. When you buy a shirt, they donate a shirt. When you buy a hoodie, they donate a hoodie.

“There are 2.6 million children living at or below the poverty level in rural America,” says founder Brain Marshall. “Our goal is to help cloth them one piece of clothing at a time.”

When you buy the new Primitive Trails t-shirt, you will not only be getting a great piece of clothing, you will also be donating a t-shirt to a child in need in rural Virginia for Christmas 2014. 

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Get Outside and Get Healthier

The outdoors makes you healthierIt may seem obvious, but getting outside makes you a healthier human. 

Duh, right?

Yes, you probably feel better both mentally and physically after some time outside. Even the worst days in the outdoors leave you feeling satisfied, but why?

Well, there is now scientific evidence of why the outdoors makes you healthier. Research shows that just the act of going outside can have major positive affects on your life, from making exercise easier, to aging more gracefully.

The benefits of outdoor play and living the active lifestyle are easy to attain; one does not have to be an extreme adrenalin junkie or polar explorer to achieve them. The simple act of taking a walk or going to your local park will have an immediate impact on your well-being. 

Don't just take our word for it, though, check out the research >>>

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