I grew up in the Rockies and went to university in Colorado. The love for nature was planted in me early and deep. Over the years, I’ve nurtured my intrinsic need to be outdoors. I lived in New York City for 20 years, but I was within throwing distance from Central Park. I now live in Pennsylvania, and I’m not as faithful to the outdoors as I once was. But when I am out in the quiet, with breezes and swaying trees, what I feel is something I think a lot of us feel, and I believe it is an inherently American trait–the childlike awe at the untouched natural world. Actually, something America and Russia have in common is the sheer vastness of their land, and the variation of terrain. But we have something most countries do not–an incredible National Parks System that is as important as our most defining characteristics as a nation. The Ken Burns documentary traces the beginnings of the National Park System that remains a vital part of life for so many of us.
You might not think this is true, but your wedding is the perfect opportunity to reconnect with nature, even if you aren’t having an outdoor wedding. Actually, outdoor weddings can sometimes take a toll on the natural environment unless precautions are made, and the party is mindful of their impact. The Nature Conservancy has the Adopt An Acre program that gives you a tangible way to help ensure that nature’s most vulnerable lands and waters are given the care, the love and the protection that they need. There are multiple ways you can connect with The Nature Conservancy for your wedding, take a look at some of their programs here:
The Central Appalachians are so spectacular, with dense forests, rocky overlooks, and an astonishing array of wildlife like the saw-whet owl and northern flying squirrel. But industry and development have been dramatically shrinking the iconic red spruce forests here, putting wildlife at risk. We can’t afford to lose more of this natural treasure.
A mother sea turtle will often travel more than 1,000 miles to find a safe nesting beach to lay her eggs. Two months later, the baby turtles emerge at night and crawl by moonlight out to sea. But today sea turtle nesting beaches are in grave danger from development and sea level rise. With their beaches rapidly disappearing, the green, loggerhead, leatherback and hawksbill sea turtles are now all critically endangered.
Give a loved one a Sea Turtle Nest to help preserve safe places for weary sea turtle mothers and protect other vital habitats.
The Northern Sierra boasts dramatic mountains, clear waters, dewy meadows and an abundance of wildlife. Bald eagles soar high above the cool lakes and streams that provide vital fresh water for the wildlife and people who call this place home. Unfortunately, this region is in dire need of conservation action. Its meadows, mountains and forests largely lack any state or federal environmental protection, putting them at serious risk of development.
Give a loved one the gift of a Mountain Meadow to share the beauty of this dramatic landscape. Your symbolic donation helps restore threatened places like the Northern Sierra and protect other vital habitats.