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Home For the Holidays: A Perfect Time to Read to Your Children

To help you get into the spirit of the happiest season of all, we are having a GIVEAWAY. Giving the gift of books and taking time to read to your children must find its way to the top of your “to-do” list every day. Check out our suggestions for your Christmas shopping list and enter for your chance to win a set of three amazing rescue and rehabilitation books by Christie Gove.  The author thrills readers with true stories of rescue and rehabilitation with her best-sellers Maggie the One-Eyed Peregrine Falcon, Esther the Eaglet, and her latest book Greta the Great Horned Owl, a tale of an injured owl’s recovery and return to nature. Wildlife photographer and naturalist Stan Tekiela will make you laugh while you read Whose Baby Butt?. From fuzzy to feathery, baby animal butts are the silliest sights in nature. This hilarious book is the perfect companion to Whose Butt?, an acclaimed...

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Florida is Perfect for Outdoor Adventures

Florida’s year-round temperate, tropical climate makes it a perfect place for outdoor adventures. The state is bordered by 8,400 miles of saltwater coast, and its interior is bejeweled by more than 30,000 lakes and thousands of miles of rivers and streams. Florida has an extensive state park system, along with national parks, local parks, and bike trails. There are limitless places for boating, fishing, or just plain beachcombing and shell hunting.  Florida has one of the longest saltwater shorelines in the United States, and the Environmental Protection Agency says the state has 570 beaches, with a total beach length of 902 miles. We don’t know who can challenge that number, but it doesn’t really matter. No matter what kind of beach you are looking for, Florida probably has it. From sunbathing to long walks, treasure hunting, or searching for unique seashells, you can find it here. It’s perfect for swimming, sunbathing,...

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Stan Tekiela Presents: The Pileated Woodpecker

There are only a handful of birds that elicit pure excitement and joy when they show up at your backyard feeding station. The Pileated Woodpecker (Dryocopus pileatus) is our largest woodpecker species in America and Canada. Some say it is the second largest woodpecker. It all depends upon if you believe the Ivory-billed Woodpecker exists or not. Stan Tekiela The Pileated Woodpecker inhabits deciduous forests in and around the Great Lakes, New England, and as far south as Florida and other Gulf Coast states. The name “pileated” refers to the large shock of red feathers on its head, called a crest. The word pileatus is Latin and translates to “cap” or “hat,” which I believe describes the prominent crest very well. They are very large birds standing nearly 20 inches tall and have a wingspan of 30 inches. Even though they look huge, they weigh only 11 oz. Males have a red mustache...

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Little Ohio

Little Ohio: A Nostalgic Look at the Buckeye State’s Smallest Towns

Little Ohio presents 100 of the state’s tiniest towns and most miniature villages. With populations under 500, these charming and unique locations dot the entire state―from Lake Seneca in the Northwest corner to Neville, bordering the Ohio River and the state of Kentucky. Little Ohio even ventures into Lake Erie, telling the story of Put-in-Bay and Kelley’s Island.  Little Ohio, written by lifelong resident Karen Robertson, is for anyone who grew up in a small town and for everyone who takes pride in being called an Ohioan. It’s one book with 100 places to love. The selected locations help readers to appreciate the broader history of small-town life in Ohio. Yet each featured town boasts a distinct narrative, as unique as the citizens who call these places home. Some villages offer hundreds of years of history, such as Tarlton, laid out before Ohio had even gained statehood. Others were built with more expedience, such as...

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Boy fishing with grandpa

Five Tips to Make Fishing With Kids a Fun Experience

The time comes in most anglers’ lives when you get to pass along your wisdom and go fishing with kids. After all, it’s a great outdoor activity, and anyone can be successful at it—with a little bit of know-how and the right equipment. But it does take patience and the ability to sit still for a while, so getting children interested can be a challenge. If you are an avid angler and you want to share your love of fishing with others, here are a few tips to help them (and you) have the time of their lives. Ensure Success Quantity is far more important than quality when fishing with kids. For them, it’s about feeling that tug and reeling in the line. It doesn’t matter what’s on the other end. While bigger is certainly better, even the smallest of catches will do (including baby fish). There’s no need to go looking...

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How to Get Your Kids Into Hiking

Want to get your kids interested in hiking? Adventure Publications editor, dad, and hiker Brett Ortler gives you his tried-and-true tips. Find the Hikes Near You Whether it’s a paved path in a city park, a managed trail in a state park, or a wild national marvel such as the Appalachian Trail, there’s probably a trail near you. Start by looking for local trails. City and county parks are often undiscovered treasure troves of hiking trails; even if you’re in the heart of a suburban or urban area, you’ll often see a surprising amount of wildlife when traipsing along them. State parks, too, often boast hundreds of miles of hiking trails, and they may offer guided hikes, as well as hikes with ties to local history or trails with interpretive signage along the way. In my experience, kids are often quick to race up to those signs and read them aloud. Keep Trail...

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rock collecting

How to Get Your Kids into Rock Collecting and Geology

Want to introduce a kid to rockhounding? Adventure Publications editor, dad, and Lake Superior agate aficionado Brett Ortler gives you his tried-and-true tips. Kids seem to instinctively love rocks and minerals. Maybe it’s because they are shiny and brightly colored—or perhaps because of the sheer fun of hunting for treasure. And because rocks and minerals are seemingly everywhere, rockhounding is an easy way to introduce kids to geology and the natural world. Figure Out the Collectibles Near You Before you take a kid rock collecting, you’ve got to familiarize yourself with your area’s geology. That way, you can set expectations about what you’re likely to find. For example, here in Minnesota, my kids know that if they look hard enough, they’re bound to find Lake Superior agates, Minnesota’s state gemstone. But they also know that when it comes to finding diamonds, gold, or emeralds, they’re probably out of luck. That’s why a good...

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Beautiful autumn tree

Try These Five Simple Ideas for a Fall Day Trip

Autumn is the perfect time of year for a day trip. The kids are settled into their school routines. The air temperature rests in that sweet spot between “turn on the AC” and “grab your coat.” Every bend along a country road reveals a new explosion of beautiful fall colors. So gather the family, hop in the car, and drive. The memories of these simple outings will keep you warm when the Season Which Must Not Be Named arrives. Hike a Scenic Trail The simplest way to enjoy the splendor of autumn is to immerse yourself in it. Even if you live in the heart of a big city, chances are good that you’ll find some pretty spectacular trails within striking distance (as evidenced by Menasha Ridge Press’s 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles series). For this fall day trip, find the best trail in your area, pack a picnic lunch, and off...

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