Grow Them Wild

There are fewer joys greater in life than listening to your kids giggle hysterically as they zip up their sleeping bags for the first night in a tent or seeing the look on their face when they complete their first big hike. They don’t remember all the fish they didn’t catch, but they do remember the first fish they did (and over the years that first fish grows in size substantially as the story is retold). At the core of our mission at Outside Walla Walla is providing ideas to get your family into nature. There are plenty of spots to throw a blanket down for a picnic, enjoy the view, and let your little explorers wander. Grab a few guide books and see how many wildflowers the family can identify in an afternoon stroll. Rent a kayak or two and head to Jubilee Lake or test your family’s adrenaline threshold and go rafting. No electronics or toys needed—all the day’s entertainment is out there.

Photo Credit: Gwen Dildine

We are often inspired to go on a creature adventure walks (thank you Wild Kratts) in the evenings. She is ready to spot anything that moves. This trail is the beginnings of the National Recreation Loop at Jubilee Lake. Walking 2.6 miles just before bedtime sure makes that process easier.

Many local organizations offer programs to enrich the outdoor experience through hands-on educational programs. The Umatilla National Forest and Blue Mountain Land Trust partner to host Nature Kids, an educational series dedicated to encouraging children to explore, play, learn about and take action for nature. They also launched a new program, BioBlitz, with the goal of uncovering the biodiversity that thrives right outside Walla Walla. The Walla Walla Public Library often hosts events geared toward the outdoors and the Children’s Museum of Walla Walla leads Nature Walks on occasion as well. Connect with Outside Walla Walla to learn more about events in the valley as well as ideas for day trips or camping outings. Before you know it, you’ll have a laundry pile full of grass stains, but we guarantee the kids will be so tired that bedtime will be a breeze!

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