The Merrell Pack Project Continues to Fund Programs that Get More People Outside

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With the goal of getting more people outside, The Merrell Pack Project opens its third cycle of grant applications. Today through June 1, individuals or groups with programs or great ideas that inspire an increase in outdoor participation can submit grant applications at http://www.cybergrants.com/on/thepack/lp.

The Merrell Pack Project has already awarded ten organizations (five organizations in each grant cycle) with $2,500 to bring ideas that increase outside participation to life. The Pack Project grants are designed to give non-profit groups and charitable organizations the resources and funding needed to bring their active ideas to life. Active outdoor recreation includes but is not limited to hiking, biking, paddling, running and general play. The first cycle of grant recipients resulted in nearly 2,000 people to spend over 77,000 hours outside connecting to their world. Cycle two grant recipients are bringing their “get outside” programs to life now.

“The goal of the Pack Project is to fund amazing programs who are passionate about getting people of all ages outside,” said Meg Hammond, director of global marketing at Merrell. “We are seeing these programs come to life and motivate kids, adults and families to make a healthy impact on their lives by simply getting outside. We are very excited to see the impact the next recipients make and are hopeful that new, amazing programs apply by our June 1st deadline.”

Grant Recipients from the most recent cycle include:

First Steps Kent – FitKids360: On the Move is a Kent County, Michigan based “couch to 5k” program for families who have completed the seven week FitKids360 overweight and obesity treatment program. They meet once per week for up to thirteen weeks to train as a group to complete a 5k walk/run, broken down by ability level. http://www.fitkids360.org/

Northern Forest Canoe Trail – This Vermont-based program connects rural youth aged 10-14 to the natural wonders of their own backyards by taking them on highly subsidized five-day canoe-camping trips along portions of the Northern Forest Canoe Trail. The Northern Forest Explorers completes roughly 20 trips a year, with 9-12 youth participating in each trip. These trips immerse kids in natural settings, planting the seeds of desire for future outdoor recreation opportunities and increased environmental awareness.
http://www.northernforestexplorers.org/

Tapestry Charter School – A New York based school that gets kids outside through winter sport activities like snowshoeing. In conjunction with Tapestry’s Expeditionary Learning outdoor teambuilding planning and new Adventure Club, our Athletics Division will expand winter programs to include snowshoeing. The school-wide goals emphasize lifelong fitness in an active process whereby students become aware of making choices toward a healthy, fulfilling, active lifestyle. Snowshoeing fits the climate in Buffalo, New York, which often provides perfect conditions for snow sports for many months—emphasizing the need to build outdoor activity throughout the school year. http://www.tapestryschool.org/

James Workman Middle School – Those who do not enjoy organized sports will get the opportunity to go hiking, campaign and geocaching together through programs at this California school. This class was created for students who do not enjoy team sports concepts. Not all kids enjoy team sports so they have developed a PE class that will focus on on building lifelong physical activity into students lives and teaches the skills and safety techniques necessary for a wide variety of outdoor activities. This class will service 100 students for 50 minutes a day, five days a week.

Rogers High School Outdoor Ed – This Arkansas school will provide experiences in rock climbing, paddling, fly fishing, hiking, spelunking, mountain biking and camping. The Outdoor Education C.A.R.E. (Conservation and Recreation Education) course at takes over 280 students from class and over 300 students from the club on a minimum of four field experiences each year. The club has one to two weekend trips per month. We provide experiences in rock climbing, paddling, fly fishing, hiking, spelunking, mountain biking, camping, and much more. We are an integrated learning curriculum which combines environmental science with physical education. This is an award winning curriculum that has been implemented in several area schools.

About Merrell (www.merrell.com)
Merrell® is an outside athletic brand who believes in encouraging everyone to get outside, be active and have fun. With over 30 years of experience in the outdoors, Merrell considers the outside more than a place. It is our history and our inspiration for the future and as gear testers and enthusiasts ourselves, we understand the benefits of connecting with the outside. Merrell shoes and clothes range from minimal outside athletic designs to core performance and casual lifestyle products that represent an outdoor life. Merrell aims to increase outdoor participation and re-connect people with each other and socialize through an outside perspective through causes like Outdoor Nation, The Pack Project and national events like the Merrell Down and Dirty Mud Run Series. Through its focus on outside athletics, the brand is inspiring and motivating people to “Connect to Your World.” www.merrell.com. Facebook: www.facebook.com/merrell. Twitter: @merrelloutside (#connection). Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/merrelloutside.

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