September 4, 2015
By Kris Parfitt
Photo at right: Dan, my soon to be husband, and I at Red Fish Lake near Stanley, Idaho. Photo by Ben Travers
I’ve been calling these past three months of 2015 My Summer of Engagement.
In June fellow staffer, Jennifer McLaughlin, and I engaged with our Central Oregon readers at the largest annual event in Bend, the Bite of Bend.
I then engaged with Sun Valley and Boise, Idaho during a visit in early July. In early August, Jennifer and I, along with our publisher Carolyn Price, engaged with vendors, clients and readers at the Outdoor Retailer (OR) Show in Salt Lake City, Utah.
However, the highlight of all the engagements this summer was when Dan, my longtime beau, asked me to marry him during a spontaneous jaunt to Camano Island in late June!
What I love about engaging with people, community and adventure is that (usually) good things come from the experience. A recent example was at the Outdoor Retailer Show. By engaging in conversations with a large number of businesses I learned a lot about the latest technology, gear and products available for outdoor enthusiasts.
A fun result from these great conversations at the OR Show was an experience I had immediately after. Dan and I joined friends at the Summer Meltdown music festival for a weekend of music and camping in Darrington, Washington. As we walked around the campgrounds I observed firsthand how the products I saw at the OR Show were being used.
Tents, sleeping bags, ground pads, hammocks, canopies, camp stoves, headlamps, lanterns, foldable chairs, hats, sunglasses, hydration systems, bags, backpacks and other adventure-worthy apparel and accessories were being enjoyed by outdoor enthusiasts of all ages!
I’m excited for our autumn edition because it’s all about engagement!
Our publisher went on a backpacking trip to Mount Rainier in August with her family and wrote about the gear she and her family engaged with on the trail. Our wine feature is about engaging with Woodinville wines, and guidebook author Tami Asars writes about engaging with bug bites and sore feet while researching fabulous places to hike.
While it’s hard to believe that fall is approaching it’s time to start planning which festivals to attend and there are a lot of choices featured in our section on Northwest Oktoberfests.
Northwesterners should start doing “pray for snow” dances come September! To get inspired, check out our engaging list of Northwest Ski Swaps, Warren Miller film screenings and the information about the two best snow shows in the country: Portland SkiFever and Snowboard Show and the Seattle Ski Dazzle event — both Nov. 6 – 8.
There are a lot of adventures ahead this autumn. Go out and get engaged!