ConservationNEXT Backyard Collective Kicks Off 2010 Schedule

ConservationNEXT, a program of The Conservation Alliance, will organize the first in a series of 2010 stewardship events – called Backyard Collectives – on March 19.
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Bend, Ore. — ConservationNEXT, a program of The Conservation Alliance, will organize the first in a series of 2010 stewardship events – called Backyard Collectives – on March 19. The project will be a clean-up of the Ventura River and Surfer’s Point Beach, heavily used recreation areas in Ventura, Calif. After successfully launching the Backyard Collective program in 2009, ConservationNEXT is excited for the second year of events that will bring together employees from Conservation Alliance member companies and grantees for hands-on environmental stewardship projects.

ConservationNEXT is working with Santa Barbara Channelkeeper to make this project possible. The event is sponsored by Deckers, Horny Toad and Patagonia, all Conservation Alliance members. The day will kick off with a greeting from the CEOs of each of the three participating companies.

“I think this event is the quintessential example of the authenticity and camaraderie of the outdoor industry. Businesses in any other industry would be considered competitors however, we are enthusiastically getting together to have fun and collaborate with passion for the environment and commitment to doing the right thing,” said Horny Toad CEO Gordon Seabury.

The remainder of the day will include four hours of beach and river clean-up, followed by an after party with refreshments, food catered by Spencer Makenzie’s Fish Company, and beverages provided by New Belgium Brewing Company. The event will also feature a volunteer fair at which Conservation Alliance grantees and local environmental organizations will share information on their current conservation initiatives.

“Patagonia is excited to be partnering, for the first time, with two local outdoor companies to protect our local watersheds. This event gives us a unique opportunity to provide manpower and non-financial support to a Conservation Alliance grantee. As a company that promotes citizen activism it’s great to put our beliefs into action,” said Patagonia CEO Casey Sheahan.

The Conservation Alliance is a group of outdoor industry companies that fund conservation organizations. The Alliance launched ConservationNEXT in August 2008 to connect individuals in the outdoor industry with the work of organizations that receive financial support from the group. ConservationNEXT.com provides people with opportunities to take online action in support of conservation and join the community’s conversations. The Backyard Collective moves that action to the field, and gives people a venue to get their “hands dirty” for the sake of conservation.

“Without our local community, Deckers wouldn’t be what it is today. The Backyard Collective gives us an opportunity to give back to the environment and community in which we live and play, while further inspiring our organization,” said Deckers CEO Angel Martinez.

For more information about this specific event please contact group coordinator, Deanna Lloyd at Deanna@theforestgroup.com or 530.344.0100.

The first Backyard Collective for 2010 was originally scheduled for February 26 at East Bay State Park in Berkeley, Calif.; however, due to weather it has been postponed to another date in April. More information about this event is forthcoming.

About the Conservation Alliance:

The Conservation Alliance is an organization of outdoor businesses whose collective contributions support grassroots environmental organizations and their efforts to protect wild places where outdoor enthusiasts recreate. Alliance funds have played a key role in protecting rivers, trails, wildlands and climbing areas.

Membership in the Alliance is open to companies representing all aspects of the outdoor industry, including manufacturers, retailers, publishers, mills and sales representatives. The result is a diverse group of businesses whose livelihood depends on protecting our natural environment.

Since its inception in 1989, the Alliance has contributed nearly $8 million to grassroots environmental groups. Alliance funding has helped save over 49 million acres of wildlands; 27 dams have either been stopped or removed; and the group helped preserve access to more than 16,000 miles of waterways and several climbing areas.

For complete information on the Conservation Alliance, see www.conservationalliance.com.

About The ConservationNEXT Backyard Collectives

ConservationNEXT, a program of The Conservation Alliance, announced the launch of the Backyard Collective in 2008. The initiatives goal is to connect individuals in the outdoor industry with the work of organizations that receive financial support from the Alliance through the online forum, www.ConservationNEXT.com. This initiative provides people with opportunities to take online action in support of conservation. The Backyard Collective moves that action to the field, and gives people a venue to get involved at the grassroots level and help further the conservation efforts within their communities.

In 2009, The Conservation Alliance hosted seven Backyard Collectives with their 22 participating grantees, 34 participating member companies, and more than 400 volunteers. These seven events allowed the volunteers to help clean up their communities’ recreational areas by removing trash, eradicating invasive species, restoring and building trails and re-planting marsh lands. Learn more about these initiatives by visiting www.ConservationNEXT.com and join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter.

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