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  • 15 Apr 2014 10:42 AM | Kathleen (Administrator)
    Editor's note: Lisa Vaas, former board director of Women Outdoors and member of the Eastern Massachusetts region, wrote this remembrance of Jan Brown, one of the founding mothers of Women Outdoors.

    I'm writing this on Monday evening, April 14, 2014. It's a day after we got the news that our dear friend Jan Brown, one of the founding members of Women Outdoors, has died.

    Jan BrownOddly, I'm more happy than sad. I think it's because I searched through my photos and found an album from The 2010 Gathering, and the first photo in that album is one of Jan, doing something that's very Jan. In the photo, she's pinning black and white clippings to a bulletin board in the Sargent Center, to illustrate her fabulous, thorough, rich and deep bibliography of books written by and about women adventurers.

    Jan BrownIn the second photo, she's turned to look at me, and she's smiling, full bore, one finger still pointing to a photo of what looks like a Victorian-era adventurer, posing with a flock of nearly naked children in what must be a tropical country - Africa, maybe? - and holding one of the children in her arms. In another photo, the subject (and author, maybe?) of "Sled Dog Trails" is bundled up, rosy cheeked in some cold land, but she seems to be looking right at Jan from across the ages, beaming with exuberance and zest, while Jan is turned to the camera, beaming that same energy at us.

    How odd, to think that the energy has been extinguished.

    But no, I guess I don't really believe that it has. I think that she lit a flame in many of us. With her kindness, with her hard work with Franny to keep Women Outdoors Magazines coming, with her archival work, with her generous loans of books about women explorers, with the inspiring photo albums documenting the many trips she took with her partner, Margaret, whom Jan lost in the past few years.

    Jan was generous with stories, generous with books, generous with her love of other cultures and other lands, generous with enthusiasm.

    I feel a glow when I look at this photo of Jan's smile.

    Jan, I'll miss you. Thank you for birding walks. I never had the right binoculars, but you shared, and I thank you.


    Thank you for the wildflower walks. I'm sending along photos of flowers we found at Sargent Center. May they be a bouquet to lay in your arms.

    Thank you so much, from the bottom of our hearts, for lighting us up with your exquisite soul and your wonderful life. 

    Lisa

  • 03 Feb 2014 6:11 PM | Kathleen (Administrator)
    The Run of the Charles on Sunday, April 27, 2014, is the largest canoe and kayak race in New England, attracting over 1000 paddlers each year who participate in 6, 9, 19, and 24-mile races in canoes and kayaks. It is put on by the Charles River Watershed Association (CRWA) to showcase the recreational potential of the Charles River and raise funds for the protection of the watershed in eastern Massachusetts.   

    Women Outdoors fields a team for the 24-mile canoe relay race, which consists of 5 legs, each about 5 miles long. Pairs of paddlers trade places in the boat as the racers paddle downstream and portage around a few dams (using portage wheels, of course!). Each racer commits to ~3 hours at the river during the race, though you can make a whole day of following the paddlers down the river and join us for a picnic and victory party at the end.  

    Women Outdoors has entered teams in the Women's Division in each of the past 3 years, and won prizes each time. Join the team for this year's race on Sunday April 27 and be part of the Women Outdoors victory. Each team member contributes $20 (WO member) or $30 (non-member) toward the team registration fee. Women Outdoors National covers the balance of the registration fee for the team.

    There will be practice sessions in April to stretch the paddling muscles, though team members outside the Boston area often practice on their own.

    In addition, we plan to field a crew for the Annual Earth Day Charles River Cleanup on Saturday April 19 as we have the past 2 years, canoeing down the river and through Motley Pond. You can sign up for the cleanup river paddle even if you aren't part of the race team.  More information on the race and cleanup event can be found at http://www.crwa.org/.

    To sign up, email Jackie at jsslivko@yahoo.com or Deb at dkweis@alum.mit.edu


  • 03 Feb 2014 6:05 PM | Kathleen (Administrator)
    Here’s a special note from Franny, the editor of Women Outdoors Magazine:

    The Women Outdoors Magazine is so much more interesting when it has your stories and illustrations.

    Take any good pictures lately? Find a fantastic getaway? Challenge yourself in a new way, outdoors? (I did. I walked my dog through the forest alone in the dark in the rain.) Meet a fascinating outdoorswoman you'd like to write about? Compose a song or write a poem inspired by the outdoors? Learn a new skill and willing to tell us about it?

    Please send along articles from 25 to 1000 words, ideally. Word attachments to your email are preferred. Photos are best as jpegs. Send everything to editor@womenoutdoors.org by Saturday, February 15, 2014.

    Thanks.

  • 07 Nov 2013 2:41 PM | Kathleen (Administrator)

    Cross-country skiing at CraftsburyCalling all you cross-country ski bums! Join Women Outdoors for our 9th Annual Cross-Country Ski Weekend at the Craftsbury Outdoor Center in the heart of Vermont’s unspoiled Northeast Kingdom on January 24-26, 2014.

    This amazing weekend features 3 days and 2 nights of cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, ice skating and socializing with the option of adding Sunday night if you can’t bear to go home. Accommodations, all meals and cross-country touring tickets are included. Women Outdoors members from all regions are encouraged and welcome to attend this event.

    Accommodations and meals

    Accommodations are dormitory style with single and double rooms, which allows us to offer great discounted pricing. Women Outdoors has reserved seven double rooms (twin beds), which will sleep 14, and three single rooms for a total of 10 rooms and 17 spaces. Once these rooms are filled, any more rooms will be booked at the full rate, so make your reservations early.

    The Craftsbury Outdoor Center prepares delicious meals with both vegetarian and non-vegetarian options. The variety and fresh local ingredients are just fabulous. Gluten-free and other specialties are available with advance notice. Coffee, tea and snacks are generally available all day.

    Registration fees

    The Women Outdoors 9th Annual Cross-Country Ski Weekend at Craftsbury is for Women Outdoors members only. There is a minimum two-night stay – Friday and Saturday, Jan. 24-25, 2014. Prices range from $183 (double) to $212 (single) for the weekend; staying Sunday night, Jan. 26, adds $94 or $104.

    More information

    For detailed information and to register, visit the Cross-Country Ski Weekend page.

    Look forward to seeing you there.

  • 29 Aug 2013 3:00 PM | Kathleen (Administrator)
    It's that time again, and this year the fall Magazine submission deadline is September 15, 2013. Women Outdoors Magazine is nothing without your stories, photos, how-to articles, poems, muses, memories, sketches, opinions. Please send contributions along. If you don't have time to write something long, just send along a short email about a hike you took or a raft trip you are dreaming of. How about some fiction! I don't think we've ever had that.

    Please accompany all writing and artwork with a biography. Send photographs (with captions and photographer’s name) and artwork as jpg files attached to email. Writing is best attached as Word files.  Address contributions to: Editor@womenoutdoors.org.

    Thank you so much. It is a lot of fun for me, the editor, and for Stein, the art editor, to put together a magazine full of Women Outdoors life!

    Franny
    Editor

  • 21 Mar 2013 6:51 PM | Kathleen (Administrator)

    Mary HollandMary Holland, the Gathering's keynote speaker, is a naturalist, photographer, educator, columnist and natural history blog writer from Hartland, Vermont. Mary’s enthusiasm for and knowledge about the natural world is contagious as she presents her program based on her book, Naturally Curious: A Photographic Field Guide and Month-by-Month Journey through the Fields, Woods, and Marshes of New England. This book won the 2011 National Outdoor Book Award in the Nature Guidebook Category.

    In her program, Mary goes through the year, month by month, highlighting species and events, illustrated with her wildlife photography.  Amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals, insects, spiders, plants and fungi are all represented.  Before and after the program, Mary’s lifelong natural history collection of skins, skulls, scat, etc. will be on display. 

    Following the program, signed copies of Naturally Curious will be available for purchase. To view Mary’s daily natural history blog, go to www.naturallycuriouswithmaryholland.wordpress.com.

  • 07 Feb 2013 6:14 PM | Kathleen (Administrator)
    The Run of the Charles on April 28, 2013, is the largest canoe and kayak race in New England, attracting over 1000 paddlers each year who participate in 6, 9, 19, and 24-mile races in canoes and kayaks.  It is put on by the Charles River Watershed Association (CRWA) to showcase the recreational potential of the Charles River and raise funds for the protection of the watershed in eastern Massachusetts.   

    Women Outdoors fields a team for the 24-mile canoe relay race, which consists of 5 legs, each about 5 miles long.  Pairs of paddlers trade places in the boat as the racers paddle downstream and portage around a few dams (using portage wheels, of course!).  Each racer commits to ~3 hours at the river during the race, though you can make a whole day of following the paddlers down the river and join us for a picnic and victory party at the end.  


    In the past two years, Women Outdoors has entered the only two teams in the Women's Division, and (surprisingly!) we walked away with 1st and 2nd prize each time.  Join the team for this year's race on Sunday April 28 and be part of the Women Outdoors victory.  There will be practice sessions in April to stretch the paddling muscles, though team members outside the Boston area often practice on their own. 

    Team members contribute $20-30 toward the team registration fee.  In addition, we plan to field a crew for the Annual Earth Day Charles River Cleanup 
    on Saturday April 20.  The Women Outdoors crew had a blast at this event last year as they canoed down the river and through Motley Pond, piling their boats high with river trash.  You can sign up for the cleanup river paddle even if you aren't part of the race team.  More information on the race and cleanup event can be found athttp://www.crwa.org/.

    To sign up, email Deb Weisenstein (dkweis@alum.mit.edu).
  • 01 Feb 2013 3:06 PM | Kathleen (Administrator)
    Please send us your articles, stories, poems and artwork. Interview another woman and write up her story, and include photographs. Be creative or newsy. What cool outdoor trip did you take last weekend? What adventure are you planning? Where do you walk your dog? Is there a tree you love? Stroll through any hollows, perch on any rocks, trudge through any bogs lately? Submissions are needed.

    Send these three or four things to editor@womenoutdoors.org:

    -Writing (best as a Word file)
    -Photo or artwork (jpg files attached to email)
    -a short biography about you
    -your address so we can send you extra copies of the magazine.

    Deadline: Sunday, February 17
  • 17 Oct 2012 5:30 PM | Kathleen (Administrator)
    The editor is back from a quiet time! How about a deadline two weeks from now for your submissions: November 1. You send stuff at a record speed and we'll turn out the magazine with similar alacrity.

    Women Outdoors Magazine is nothing without your stories, photos, how-to articles, poems, muses, memories, sketches, opinions. Please send contributions along. If you don't have time to write something long, just send along a short email about a hike you took or a raft trip you are dreaming of. I bet you had some adventures over the past few months. What are you up to the next couple of weekends? I know Western Mass. is planning a retreat. Did you take a kayak trip, or a wildflower walk, or a cave exploration, this summer?

    Please accompany all writing and artwork with a biography. Send photographs (with captions and photographer’s name) and artwork as jpg files attached to email. Writing is best attached as Word files.  Address contributions to: Editor@womenoutdoors.org.

    Thank you.

    Franny, Editor
    (and thanks as always to the rest of the magazine staff, Jan and our designer, Stein)
  • 17 Oct 2012 5:00 PM | Kathleen (Administrator)
    Take a hike with Women Outdoors Mid-Atlantic this autumn.  We have four hikes lined up between now and the end of the year with lots of opportunities to enjoy the fall colors and natural beauty of our area.

    We start our fall hiking season on Saturday, October 27, at Harpers Ferry, WV, where we’ll hike Loudoun Heights, a moderately strenuous 5-mile hike with an elevation gain of 1200 feet and views of the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers. Registration closes on Thursday, October 25.

    Our other hikes this fall include:
    • Hawksbill Mountain Hike in Shenandoah National Park on Saturday, November 10, where we’ll bag the highest peak in SNP and be treated to a 360-degree view of the Shenandoah Valley.
    • Sugarloaf Mountain Hike in Frederick County, MD, on Saturday, November 24.  Leave the malls and madness behind and enjoy a 5-mile hike on Thanksgiving weekend.
    • Billy Goat Trail Section B Hike in Potomac, MD, on Saturday, December 8.  Not as famous (or nearly as strenuous) as Section A, this segment of the Billy Goat Trail offers some nice rock outcroppings and a variety of scenery along the Potomac River.

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