SAN LEANDRO, Calif., May 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Summer is just around the corner and it's the perfect time to enjoy the great outdoors with help from The North Face Explore Your Parks (www.exploreyourparks.com), an award-winning outreach effort. For the fourth consecutive year, The North Face is partnering with state parks around the country to encourage participation in outside activities.
The 2013 program, running now through August, has expanded to 13 markets, including state parks in 12 states and the Chicago Park District. This marks the first time Explore Your Parks partnered with a city park district.
Offered again this year is the popular Camping 101 program for first-time campers. The overnight experience, guided by park rangers, focuses on camping basics including campsite set-up and etiquette, outdoor cooking, safety tips and staff-led nature education sessions.
Camping 101 activities are customized in each of the 13 markets with some state park locations offering family-oriented activities like fishing, hiking and canoeing. In Chicago, participants will learn how to camp in an urban setting with the Chicago skyline as a backdrop.
Currently, The North Face Explore Your Parks reaches approximately 25 percent of the U.S. population and the company is committed to expanding the program every year to boost interest in outdoor exploration.
"Research shows only half of Americans currently participate in outdoor activities," said Ann Krcik, director of Outdoor Exploration for The North Face. "The North Face looks to encourage people of all ages to get off the couch and venture outside to enjoy the beauty and wonder of nature– especially our parks."
The success of the Explore Your Parks campaign was recognized this year when Outdoor USA Magazine named it "Best Cause Program." The award recognizes those companies that excel in design and implementation of innovative marketing and communications programs.
"Our mission is to foster a love of the outdoors," Krcik said. "With Explore Our Parks and family involvement, we are reaching kids at an early age. If youth experience outdoor activities in a positive way, it's possible to set long-term trends for an overall healthier life."
To register for a Camping 101 activity, plan activities and generally learn more about parks nationwide, or find a store where you can receive a free park pass, visit the interactive Explore Your Parks website.
About Explore Your Parks
Since 2010, The North Face has provided community events, free activity guide booklets, park passes and camping discounts to the public through its Explore Your Parks program. It now reaches 13 markets nationwide, and currently partners with the Chicago Park District and state park agencies in California, Idaho, Massachusetts, Colorado, Georgia, Maryland, Missouri, New York, Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Oregon.
About The North Face®
The North Face, a division of VF Outdoor, Inc., was founded in 1968. Headquartered Alameda, Calif., 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 Good Solutions Group
Good Solutions Group (GSG) is a Southern California-based marketing services company that specializes in active lifestyle marketing and runs Explore Your Parks. GSG works with park agencies across the country to create programs that benefit parks, people and corporate partners. Recognized as a thought-leader in cause marketing, GSG created programs for corporations such as Coca-Cola, Toyota, General Mills, Odwalla, Honest Tea, Subaru and American Express, and created award-winning experiential marketing programs for The North Face, Nestle, and Kraft.
SOURCE The North Face