The other night my family and I ventured at to the new City Creek Mall in Salt Lake City, Utah. If you haven’t seen anything on this mall, it is impressive. It seems to have anything you could ask for in a mall and much more. It has water fountains as well as a stream that runs through it that even has a waterfall. It has a retractable roof that can be open and shut depending on the weather. But even with all that back to the question that I asked in the title: Is there anything good at malls?
When asking that question I am thinking about all the outdoorsy type of people. If you like clothes or shoes then there is definitely something that you would like at a mall. But how about all of us people who love to play in outdoors? For me personally I think that malls are getting better at this. The new City Creek mall has the first Salomon store in the US which is just one outdoor brand that is setting up shop in a mall. The President and General Manager Mike Dowse of ASWO (which is the parent company of Salomon) said “we’re excited to offer shoppers another way to choose our stellar products in downtown Salt Lake City.” Also The North Face store opened a couple months ago in the Fashion Place Mall in the Salt Lake area as well. Also the Gateway Mall has Quicksilver, Roxy, Dicks, EpicBoardStore and Zumiez all dedicated to those who love the outdoors. I don’t know if it is just Utah and the Salt Lake area but I think malls are trying to serve the outdoor community better as more people get outside to play.
I still think there are plenty of other places to go and find your new gear but heading to the mall isn’t as bad as it once was for the outdoor community. And at least with the redesign of a lot of the malls around here, you are still outside for the majority of the experience. So the next time someone says lets head to the mall, just remember there is probably at least one store that you will enjoy going into.
We have been going strong now for two years and we have been seeing continual growth through the whole thing, but we are happy to see that we made it on the frontpage of Hiking The Trail Daily. We hope this is a trend that we will continue to see. And we thank everyone who has been spreading the word about us and has been there from the start.
The first day of the OR Show is always a good time. I had a blast meeting up with old friends and making new ones. Also it is a great day to be able to get out and try some of the gear that is going to be coming out. One thing that I have wanted to try lately is Stand Up Paddle boarding. We first met up with Steve from Stand Up Paddle Company. He was super energetic and told us to give it a try. Steve’s son gave us the run down and away we went. It was a good time and not that hard. I really didn’t come dressed to get wet so I was hoping not to fall in and luckily I didn’t. The first board that we tried was pretty big. They also had a smaller board that was not as stable but a lot easier to control and navigate.
We then meet up with Kahuna Creations. They are makers of longboards for land not water. They also use a paddle-like stick to push and slow down the board. I have longboarded for a couple years now and this was a great alternative to pushing with the legs.
The last SUP board that we tried was a soft board made by the oZoBoard Company. Their boards were wide and short. By this time the wind had been picking up and the water was getting choppy. It was a different feel from riding the boards earlier on smooth water. But these boards were stable and felt great. Again I didn’t even fall in. Stand Up paddle boarding made a great showing. I didn’t know that there could be so many different makers of boards.
The show was big and there were companies everywhere. We were able to check out some of the new packs from MHM. They are going to be sweet when they hit the market.
It was a great showing for the first day. I am excited for the next few days to meet up and see all the new stuff that will be coming out. Stay tuned for more details.
Here is a video of me coming back in from paddle boarding.
Here are a few other images from today.
Others of us weren’t as lucky not to fall in.
New Belgium Brewing is giving away 13 bikes in 13 different cities to people who will trade in their cars. On their website it say, “It’s about weaning yourself off the petroleum teat. It’s about becoming a better, sexier person. It’s about rediscovering the cultural thrill of public transportation.”
All you have to do is submit a video of your story and why you want to be car free. Check out their website for all the details at New Belgium.
I was just going over the 2009 Participation Study by the Outdoor Foundation. It is a interesting report covering what is happening in the outdoors and who is participating. The report showed that there were increases in outdoor activities and that more people were returning to nature. Both hiking and camping showed increases of 9% and 7% respectively. 48.6% of Americans ages 6 and older participated in outdoor recreation and 43% of the outdoor participants are female. One of the sad statistics showed that “43% of outdoor participants get out less than every other week — shedding light on America’s current obesity and inactivity epidemic.”
The report shows that the most popular outdoor activities by participation rate are:
- Freshwater, Saltwater and Fly Fishing (17%)
- Car, Backyard and RV Camping (15%)
- Running, Jogging and Trail Running (15%)
- Road Biking, Mountain Biking and BMX (15%)
- Hiking (12%)
I think the most discouraging statistic is that outdoor participation among youth ages 6 to 17 dropped by 6%. This has been a trend for the last three years. The greatest decline was among the youngest (ages 6-12) surveyed. This shows that it is important for all of us to try and help get children outdoors earlier. Children also said that “fun” was an important part of motivating them to get outdoors. So it is important to remember to take it slow and make it fun for kids will want to do it again and again. I believe as we do this, children will learn to love playing outside and the obesity rate will decline.
There are many programs to help children get outside and play.
- http://www.ultramarathonman.com (No Child Left Inside)
This is just a few. There are many more in your local area. If you have would like to read the full report please visit Outdoor Industry Association. Also if you have any great ideas of how to get kids outside, please comment so we can help each other get kids outdoors.