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We spend our days wandering this world, watching life through the screens of our electronic devices. This year on Black Friday, join Minority Veterans of America as we participate in REI’s #OptOutside 2018.

Break the cycle of our days centered on consuming and join your fellow minority veterans, friends, and community partners as we host events in 10 cities around the country.

We are proud to team up with REI Co-Op to #OptOutside and spend time in nature rather than in Black Friday crowds.

#VetsLikeUs #MinorityVets #BlackFriday #OptOutsideMVA

ANCHORAGE, AK

Rainbow Trailhead @ 12 PM

Rainbow Trailhead is about a 2 mile hike at an altitude of about 3500 ft. Pretty easy for Alaska! Bring water, hiking boots for snow (waterproof, spiked trail shoes or cleats), gloves, hats, winter coats and snowpants in case it's chilly (below 20) and of course your camera! There's plenty of beautiful views of the Turnagain Arm, volcanoes, Denali, and winter sunsets over the inlet.

There's plenty of parking but it's an easy turnoff to miss.

Contact: Haliehana Stepetin

ATLANTA, GA

Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site @ 11 AM

Meet us in Historic Fourth Ward Park by near the intersection of North Avenue and Angier Avenue; look for the signs across the street from Ponce City Market! We will walk the Beltline Eastside Trail to the Streetcar stop in front of the MLK Jr. National Historic Site (1.8 miles), then visit of the historic site and then catch the streetcar. We will ride the 2.7-mile streetcar loop, stopping at Sweet Auburn Curb Market for lunch. We will then return to the Beltline and walk another 1.8 miles back to Historic Fourth Ward.

This event is open to all people. Veterans, military, and their families are strongly encouraged to join us this day. This trail is accessible for folks at all ability levels and age ranges. Bring a bottle of water and comfortable walking shoes. Lunch will be on attendees, and there is a 1-3 dollar suggested donation for the ATL Streetcar.

Contact: David Keener

DENVER, CO

Barr Lake State Park @ 10 AM

Barr Lake, a participant in Fresh Air Friday, will offer outdoorsy folks a chance to work off that turkey dinner on a three-mile nature stroll through the beautiful park, where bald eagles are known to court and build nests in the winter in anticipation of spring hatchings. Barr Lake is also dog-friendly so bring along your well-behaved, leashed pups.

Entrance to the park is free as a part of Fresh Air Friday.

Contact: Heather Nicholson

CHICAGO, IL

Details on the way...

Contact: Samantha Fergus

LOS ANGELES, CA

Details on the way...

Contact: Miguel Vazquez

LOUISVILLE, KY

Lake Nevin Loop @ 10 AM

Join us for a glorious hike and burn off some of your turkey and pumpkin pie. We’ll be meeting at the Garden Pavilion at Bernheim Arboretum to do the 1.5 mi Lake Nevin loop. This route is partially accessible, and we invite anyone to come and join us for some or all of the hiking. Look for the silver Subaru hatchback with Oregon plates, and we’ll see you on the trails!

Contact: Katherine Pratt

PORTLAND, OR

Forrest Park Stone House Hike @ 10AM

Set in a lush canyon alongside the cool waters of Balch Creek, the largest stream in Forest Park, Lower Macleay Trail is an explosion of licorice ferns, leafy salal bushes, moss-jacketed hemlocks, and some of the most impressive fir specimens in the park, including Portland’s most gasp-inducing heritage tree, a 242-foot, jade-crowned giant—the country’s tallest fir within a city. For more color, scope out the creek’s population of native cutthroat trout. Then explore the “Stone House,” the remains of a Works Progress Administration–era structure, built in 1936. Its lichen-coated walls make a killer fort for an afternoon.

We will be starting from NW Upshur Street and following the Lower Macleay Trail for almost one mile. (Easy, 1.7 miles out-and-back)

Contact: Penny Dexenjaeger

SAN DIEGO, CA

Coronado Beach @ 9 AM

Join us in front of Hotel Del Coronado (look for the MVA sign!) and spend a couple of hours outside enjoying one of the most beautiful beaches San Diego has to offer. To keep it beautiful, we will ask each participant to take a small trash bag along and pick up any litter they come across.

Contact: Meaghan Biery

SEATTLE, WA

Rattlesnake Ridge @ 10 AM PST

Meet at Rattlesnake Ridge with your cold weather jacket, gloves, and snacks for energy with an REI raffle atop the mountain!

Contact: Tramese Byrd

WASHINGTON, DC

Great Falls @ 10 AM

Hiking at Great Falls! Dress in layers, wear sturdy shoes, and bring water and a snack.

Parking on site is $10. If you'd like to carpool into the park contact us below.

Contact: Tammy Barlet

Credits:

Created with images by jedphoto - "Piedmont Park in Atlanta, Georgia" • Daniel Guerra - "Flying Over San Diego" • Zhifei Zhou - "Mountain near the city" • oneinchpunch - "Couple running" • csfotoimages - "Horses enjoying the summer sunshine at farms around Versailles nr Lexington, KY, the State known as the "Horse Capital of the World"." • MILKOVÍ - "Seattle" • MarkThomas - "washington monument washington dc morning sunrise reflecting" • andrew welch - "untitled image" • Tomasz Zajda - "Seattle Night Panoramic"

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