Hike With Your Family To Help Get Inner City Kids Outside!

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© Bridget Williams

On October 26, Blue Sky Fund will bring over 400 participants together to hike along the James River for the Dominion Energy Hike For Kids. Hikers can choose from a 3-, 8- or 14-mile loop along the James River Park System, departing from the Virginia War Memorial and returning to a post-hike celebration with food from Good Doggie, an exclusive collaboration beer with Vasen Brewing, and live entertainment for the whole family.

Think back to the last time you ventured outside with your family, and the wonder that filled your child’s eyes as he or she explored a new environment. Many young people growing up in Richmond’s public housing neighborhoods have not ever experienced the magic of the James River, though they live just a mile or two away. Blue Sky Fund wholeheartedly believes that the outdoors should be a part of every child’s life. By participating in the Dominion Energy Hike For Kids, you have the power to help connect thousands of inner city kids with the transformational power of nature. With each step around the James River, know that you’re paying it forward to those deserving children.

Inner Growth Through Outdoor Adventure.

“I love the way the river sounds. Nature makes me feel so much more relaxed and I become the best version of myself,” said Hannah, a graduate of Blue Sky’s Outdoor Leadership Institute. Time spent in nature is proven to support positive youth development; yet, evidence shows that children are spending half as much time outside today as they did 20 years ago, with most kids only spending four to seven minutes a day playing freely outside. Access to nature is critical for urban children – outdoor educated urban youth show a 27% increase in measured mastery of science concepts, conflict resolution skills, proper classroom behavior, and their motivation to learn.

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© Bridget Williams

Hike For Kids – and change lives.

Last year, Hike For Kids raised $35,000 to provide outdoor education programming to over 3,000 students across Richmond in 2018. This year’s event has a fundraising goal of $50,000 – these funds are essential to Blue Sky Fund expanding its experiential science education program for elementary school students from eight to 14 Richmond City Public Schools during the 2019-2020 school year. “We love Blue Sky because it gives our students opportunities to get out to places that they’ve never experienced before. I absolutely love going to Pony Pasture, because the kids get the chance to actually get on the river bank, do a little exploring in the water, take nature hikes – they get a feel for the James River and how mighty it is,” said Tracey Smith, a Chimborazo Elementary School Teacher.

Want to get involved?

Registering online for the Dominion Energy Hike For Kids is easy. Simply click here and register as a fundraising participant or a non-fundraising participant. When you sign up as a fundraising participant, Blue Sky Fund will provide the tools and resources you need to help raise funds among your own networks. You can also register to participate as a team with your coworkers or family.

Registration is $40/person for hikers 18 years and older, $15/person for hikers between the ages of 4 and 18, and children 3 and under are free. All participants will receive an event t-shirt and access to the after-party with beer, food and extra fun for the family!

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© Bridget Williams

Sign your family up to hike today!

If your family loves to explore the great outdoors, whether through hiking, biking, or simple exploration, then you know all too well the valuable benefits that being outside provides to children. This hiking event provides an ideal venue for indulging in your family’s own love of the outdoors, while ensuring that all children in the Richmond area have the chance to discover the beauty and transformative power of nature for themselves.

The Dominion Energy Hike For Kids would not be possible without the generous support of individual donors, as well as Dominion Energy, Capital One, Genworth Financial, Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU, One Digital, Outdoor Access, Riverside Outfitters, and Väsen Brewing Company.

Blue Sky Fund Hike for Kids 2019_flier

About Blue Sky Fund

Blue Sky Fund is a non-profit organization providing transformational experiences to Richmond’s urban youth through outdoor education, and aims to give every young person in Richmond the opportunity to discover their selves by actively engaging the natural world. Founded in 2008, Blue Sky Fund has evolved to offer school-based, after-school, weekend, and summer outdoor programming that meets the following goals: help children achieve academic success, especially in the sciences, through active outdoor education that is appropriate for their current science curriculum; and develop character and leadership through outdoor experiences that expand horizons, increase confidence, and build collaboration skills.