News Release Great American Backyard Campout

GREAT AMERICAN BACKYARD CAMPOUT WILL CAP GREAT OUTDOORS MONTH SUCCESSES

This news release is available as a .pdf here.

Washington, D.C. (June 24, 2014) -- Millions of Americans have responded to calls by the President, all 50 governors, the medical community and more to have fun this June in America’s Great Outdoors. They have enjoyed free fishing days and worked on trails, learned about new outdoor apps and been treated to free boat rides. One more great opportunity for active outdoor fun is coming up on Saturday, June 28 – the Great American Backyard Campout, coordinated by the National Wildlife Federation.

The Great American Backyard Campout is the perfect opportunity to grab a tent and get outdoors. Whether participating in an organized event or camping in your own backyard, the annual, nationwide event – now celebrating its 10th anniversary – is designed to promote the benefits of camping as a way to connect people with nature and support efforts of the National Wildlife Federation and others to get Americans outdoors. This year, the Federation’s goal is to have more than 200,000 people participate in the event on June 28.

To find a public Campout near you, learn how to host an event, or pledge to be part of the Great American Backyard Campout, go to www.greatoutdoorsmonth.org and click on the button marked “Great American Backyard Campout.”

The Great American Backyard Campout is just one of many events during Great Outdoors Month unlocking outdoors fun. Kansas Governor Sam Brownback (R-KS) kicked off Great Outdoors Month on May 30 in Topeka with the first Capital Campout, hosting urban youth and their families in a state park adjacent to the official residence of the Governor. The campers, scouts and partners working to connect youth and the outdoors hiked, toasted s’mores, learned about nature and camped out.

On June 7, some 150,000 people participated in more than 2,000 events during the American Hiking Society’s 22nd National Trails Day®, a big increase over 2013. On June 14, the U.S. Forest Service and the American Recreation Coalition, in conjunction with National Sponsor OFF!®, coordinated the 7th National Get Outdoors Day. GO Day 2014 included 171 sites in 39 states and the District of Columbia and was the biggest yet. Three additional Capital Campouts were held in conjunction with GO Day, aided by Great Outdoors Month Founding Sponsor The Coleman Company. Governors Nathan Deal (R-GA), John Hickenlooper (D-CO) and Jay Inslee (D-WA) worked with key youth groups to host new campers on or near the grounds of their Governor’s residences in Atlanta, Denver and Olympia.

The Corps Network organized the inaugural Great Outdoors Week Day of Service in Washington, D.C. for the Great Outdoors Month Partnership. Innovative service projects across the nation were highlighted by key speakers, and then a crew of more than 100 volunteers and conservation corps members from across the country were fed a hearty lunch by Guest Services Inc. before undertaking projects on the National Mall and at Fort Dupont. The Great Outdoors Week Day of Service will expand in future years, inviting all Americans and especially youth to undertake service projects in the Great Outdoors.

Information about Great Outdoors Month, including proclamations prepared by the President and all 50 governors, is at www.greatoutdoorsmonth.org. The site also provides links to information about recreation options at federally-administered sites and state parks across the nation and video messages about active outdoors fun.