The North Face announces second annual Explore Your Parks program

The North Face today announced the expansion of its Explore Your Parks program to seven major U.S. cities, encouraging families to get outdoors in support of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move Outside Campaign.
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 16, 2011) – In celebration of National Kids to Parks day later this month, The North Face today announced the expansion of its second annual Explore Your Parks program to encourage families to get outdoors and enjoy the nation's State Parks. The North Face, along with American Hiking Society, Leave No Trace, The National Park Trust and State Parks across the country, have teamed up for seven events across the country, including the Bay Area, Boston, New York, Washington D.C., Denver, Portland, and Minneapolis/Saint Paul. By providing families assistance and opportunities to enjoy the open spaces near them, these groups are actively supporting Let's Move Outside, the outdoor recreation component of First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move campaign to end childhood obesity.

“Drawing attention to close-to-home outdoor opportunities for everyone -- from children to seniors -- to get outside, get healthy, and have fun is at the core of the Let's Move Outside,” said Robin Schepper, Executive Director of Let's Move!. “Bringing families into the State Parks is not only enjoyable, but also helps build lasting lessons in fitness and the natural environment.”

Consumers who want o learn about how to receive a free day pass and activity guide to local parks in their area from The North Face should visit www.exploreyourparks.com.

To kick off the program, Michael Wardian, five-time winner of the National Marathon and The North Face Endurance team athlete, will join National Park Trust, American Hiking Society, The North Face and hundreds of Washington D.C. urban youth on May 21, 2011 at Mason Neck State Park (Lorton, VA) for National Kids to Parks Day. The event will run from 9 a.m. – noon local time and will feature hikes, demonstrations and giveaways.

“At The North Face, we're committed to encouraging more people to get outdoors and we want to bring attention to the dozens of unique places to explore nature close to home within our treasured state parks system” said Todd Spaletto, president of The North Face. “Because last year was such a success, this year we're expanding the Explore Your Parks program from one to seven cities to help maintain access to front country opportunities for even more people.”

“The North Face is encouraging an active, healthy lifestyle while creating stronger connections between people and the outdoors and we're proud to be a partner,” said Grace Lee, executive director of The National Park Trust. “State Parks provide endless opportunities for kids and families to be active and have fun – hiking, climbing, running, biking, volunteering, camping, playing sports, paddling and the list goes on.”

Local events take place from June through October, or visit www.exploryourparks.com for complete details:
• June 4: Portland (Stub Stewart State Park, Buxton, OR)
• June 18: Boston (Neponset River Reservation, Boston, MA)
• August 1: Denver (Barr Lake State Park, Brighton, CO)
• October 1: St. Paul (Fort Snelling State Park, Saint. Paul, MN)
• October 8: New York (Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park, Yorktown Heights, NY)
• October 15: Bay Area (Mount Diablo State Park, Clayton, CA)

State Park Partners include those in California, Colorado, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Oregon and Virginia.

About The North Face®
The North Face, a division of VF Outdoor, Inc., was founded in 1968. Headquartered in San Leandro, California, the company offers the most technically advanced products in the market to accomplished climbers, mountaineers, snowsport athletes, endurance athletes, and explorers. The company's products are sold in specialty mountaineering, backpacking, running, and snowsport retailers, premium-sporting goods retailers and major outdoor specialty retail chains.

About American Hiking Society
The North Face is a proud supporter of American Hiking Society – the national voice for hikers, dedicated to promoting and protecting America's hiking trails, their surrounding natural areas and the hiking experience. Since its founding in 1976, American Hiking Society has been the only national voice for hikers supporting trails and stewardship through its national signature programs: National Trails Day®, Volunteer Vacations, the National Trails Fund and its national trails advocacy work. For more information, visit http://www.americanhiking.org/

About The National Park Trust
National Park Trust is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation and protection of our nation's critical parklands and reconnecting our youth – especially those that are underserved – to nature. NPT's mission is to provide important recreational and educational parkland opportunities for current and future generations. As people spend more time indoors and as successive generations grow up with less of a connection to nature, NPT wants to build greater awareness and appreciation for the importance of our country's public lands and parks. To achieve this, NPT seeks to champion the acquisition and preservation of critical national, state and local parklands and to build a greater awareness through education – focusing on our youth. For more information, or to pledge to participate in National Kids to Parks Day visit http://www.BuddyBison.org

About the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics
The award-winning Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics teaches people of all ages how to enjoy the outdoors responsibly, and is the most widely accepted outdoor ethics program used on public lands. As the leader in sustainable recreation practices, the Center is training a nation of outdoor advocates to put Leave No Trace principles into action. Through relevant and targeted education, research and outreach, the Center will ensure the long-term health of our natural world. www.LNT.org.

About Let's Move!
Let's Move! is a comprehensive initiative, launched by the First Lady, dedicated to solving the problem of obesity within a generation, so that children born today will grow up healthier and able to pursue their dreams. This is an ambitious goal. But it can be done. Combining comprehensive strategies with common sense, Let's Move! is about putting children on the path to a healthy future starting with their earliest months and years and continuing throughout their lives. Giving parents helpful information and fostering environments that support healthy choices. Providing healthier foods in our schools. Ensuring that every community has access to healthy, affordable food. And, helping kids become more physically active.

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