Get outside for Earth Day

Most Minnesotans have kept warm in the comfort of the indoors during the cold winter months. However, spring has finally sprung, and there is no better way to celebrate Earth Day than getting outside. 

April 22 marks the annual date to celebrate mother earth, and April as a whole envelops the same traditions Earth Day brings. On top of making green choices to keep the planet afloat, we can also use it as an opportunity to spend more time out in the world. 

According to the USDA Forest Service, there are many physiological and physical benefits in nature scientists have directly observed, supporting the body, mind and community. A body spent in the great outdoors can increase life expectancy, improve sleep quality and reduce the risk of cancer. 

Once we get our feet out the door, the opportunities are endless. Whether it’s spent alone or with company, there are many outdoor activities to choose from. 

Hiking, biking, running, walking or skipping — there are plenty of trails around Mankato to travel both on and off MSU’s campus. It helps us get exercise while enjoying the scenic views on the road. 

In a calmer fashion, we can also set out a blanket and have a picnic, play darts while sitting in a circle or catch some Vitamin-D while sunbathing on a beach towel. 

There are sand volleyball courts on campus as well as other potential sports games to play. Grab a few buddies, a ball and get competitive. 

If the wind is preventing us from outdoor play, work with it instead of against it. We could go old-school and fly a kite or watch a sailboat flow down the river. 

Sometimes we have things to work on indoors, but many of these things can be completed outside as well. We can make art or other crafts outside or catch-up on homework while sitting on a patio. 

Another idea to not only get comfortable with outside while helping it grow is to start planting a garden. This could be anything from flowers to fruits, and it could help save a few coins on groceries. 

Getting outside is a simple mood-booster from the stress of finals week, and it celebrates Earth’s best qualities as April or Earth Month comes to an end. It’s a great way to say thank you to Earth, our one and only home planet. 

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