FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - April 20, 2022
Alexandria, Va. – Understanding and supporting our natural world starts at our backdoors, says the TurfMutt Foundation. As we celebrate Earth Day, the Foundation offers tips to help everyone better enjoy the nature that is waiting in our backyards, parks, school yards and other managed green spaces, year round.
“Every day can be Earth Day,” say Kris Kiser, President of the TurfMutt Foundation. “By using and caring for the green space around our homes, schools, municipal parks and other managed areas, the outdoors can be available to anyone at any time. And if we learned anything in the last few years, is the stress relief and health benefits available through connecting with nature.”
Think of the ways you can move activities normally done indoors, outdoors. From playing to working, from exercising to dining, more people are finding their front and backyards are an extension of their home. Consider what you can take outside instead of settling for the artificial light and closed spaces of our indoor areas. They’re wonderful in inclement weather, but the outdoors is terrific for grabbing some Vitamin D, fresh air and stress-relief.
Utilize the best video call backdrop, naturally. No need to turn to technology when outdoors. The natural setting created by your yard’s living landscape – trees, flowers, bushes and other plants – is the best video call background, bar none.
Explore a living laboratory. Your backyard or park is an active and growing place for learning even when school isn’t in session. Take online classes under the shade of a tree. Do homework at a patio or picnic table. Brush up on STEM education by planting and studying flowers, insects, wildlife, and weather watching.
Enjoy a truly “green” spa. The healing power of nature is only a few steps away. Let stress blow away in the breeze as you swing in a hammock. Clear your mind with a few breaths of fresh air. Meditate to the sounds of nature. Do yoga to the soundtrack of songbirds. Make your lawn your exercise mat.
Create a five-star event space. The pandemic made traditional celebrations and gatherings challenging. But the outdoors came to the rescue for events. Now we all know the family yard and community park are five-star event spaces that are always easy to book for graduation parties, family reunions, birthday celebrations and holiday gatherings.
Set the stage for backyarding. Creating a yard that supports all of the aspects of your family’s outdoor lifestyle means taking stock of what you might need to care for your green space. Take an inventory of your yard, your individual needs, landscape and equipment need to care for it to make sure your space will always be there for backyard memory-making.
Sign up for Mutt Mail, a monthly e-newsletter with backyarding tips and all the news from the TurfMutt Foundation. To learn more about creating the yard of your dreams, visit TurfMutt.com.
TurfMutt was created by the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute’s (OPEI) TurfMutt Foundation and has reached more than 70 million children, educators and families since 2009. Through classroom materials developed with Scholastic, TurfMutt teaches students and teachers how to “save the planet, one yard at a time.” TurfMutt is an official USGBC® Education Partner and part of their global LEARNING LAB. TurfMutt is an education resource at the U.S. Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools, the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Green Apple, the Center for Green Schools, the Outdoors Alliance for Kids, the National Energy Education Development (NEED) project, Climate Change Live, Petfinder and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. In 2017, the TurfMutt animated video series won the coveted Cynopsis Kids Imagination Award for Best Interstitial Series. TurfMutt’s personal, home habitat is featured in the 2017-2020 Wildlife Habitat Council calendars. More information at www.TurfMutt.com.