Find a job you love and you will never work a day in your life. - Confucius
It’s that time of year again. School supply lists, back-to-school sales, I’ve even seen Halloween, and not to be outdone, yes, Christmas decorations at a few stores already. One more flip of the calendar and it’ll be August. I know my family has been enjoying summer with grass stained knees, dirty feet, sun bleached hair, and that ever present coco-nutty smell of sun tan lotion. We’ve made one adventure to the north woods of Wisconsin to visit family and put in some much needed relaxing time. But it always seems that August is the prime month to fit it all in before school starts again. That’s how our family is feeling and we are attempting one more push to make it the “best summer on the whole Earth”. (as Gabriel and Evan, our 4-year-old twins, would say)
This year, we are deciding to wrap up summer with our first big road trip as a family. Aaron and I have hit the highway together in the past, but never with the kiddos. Our plan is to drive our trusty Jeep from Medford, OR to Yellowstone National Park for a few nights, do some tent camping at a KOA, hit the touristy sites, and then head to more of a back country site in Grand Teton National Park for one night. I’ll be sure to give you some hands-on true-tested feedback of what works and what doesn’t when camping and hiking with little ones.
After four nights in a tent, we will head to Jordanelle State Park in Utah for the Open Air Demo Day with Outdoor Retailer. This is where we’ll meet up with CWO's trusty leaders, David and Sarah Schuster, and our paddle guru Luke. We plan to check out the latest in paddle sports and anything you dream of to play with outside. It’s a hands-on day for us to be sure what we are bringing to you, in store, performs and is as much fun as it should be. From shoes and sunglasses to SUP’s and canoes, they’ll have it, and we’ll be sure to try it – no need to ask me twice! Amongst the demos, there will be a 5K trail race, a Paddle Pedal Challenge, Treasure Hunts, Orienteering, and not to be outdone, did I mention there will be a world record attempt? Oh yes, SUPzilla will be in attendance to have more than 30 Standup Paddlers on top headed across the lake to claim the World Record.
A glimpse down one ailse of the Salt Palace Convention Center
The following three days we’ll spend in the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City. Here’s where the entire CWO buying team (Sarah, Dave, Kellie, Luke, Brian Waspi, and myself) will divide and conquer to find the best new gear and apparel to bring you for next summer. This is no small adventure. The Outdoor Retailer Show is the largest event to come to the Salt Palace – the winter show this past January brought in more people and tourists than the 2002 Olympics*. It’s a 350,000 square foot (yes, that’s big) maze of vendors, buyers, and retailers, spanning the entire convention center and even spilling out on to the street.
(Pictures courtesy of Outdoor Retailer/Facebook)
After the show is over, we’ll pack up our family and make the trek home. All in all, it’ll be about 12 Days, 36 some hours of driving, and 2000+ miles of adventure. Hoping to end it all as the best summer on Earth!
Now it’s your turn –
What do you want to see more of at CWO? Post here, or on Facebook, and we’ll be sure to find it for you at the show.
Do you have favorite meals to make while camping with kids? Road trip games? Traveling and camping advice with kids is definitely welcome!