462 (6/10/09)

     Saturday morning was cold and raining--not a day you would pick to be outside.  But we didn’t  know that.  We’re Trail Guards, and not smart enough to know when we’re not supposed to be having fun.

     As the drizzle turned to a light, but steady, rain, we dodged the drops while working the “flying squirrel,” also sometimes called the human elevator, at Prairie Woods Environmental Learning Center, near Spicer. 

     This great team-building activity is fun, exhilarating, empowering, and bonding for all those involved.  Everyone wears a climbing harness, and you take turns being the hoister and hoist-ee.  Hooked into the end of a rope, you signal your team to pull you up as high as 40 feet above the ground--fast or slow, high or low, swinging or straight up, all on your command.

     The kids learn a lot about communication, trust, challenge, and the importance of proper equipment.  Prairie Woods has the best facilitators around, and it’s hard to not come away somehow better than you were.

      We did then move inside to the indoor climbing wall to finish out our morning, and boarded the bus for  a waiting hot lunch at the Nature Park (thanks, Dennis).  It was a great morning, and a nice thank you to our crew for all the work they have done at the park already this spring. 

     Special thanks to Roxanne Gale and Rhonda Fangmeier for making this outing a success, and to Prairie Woods for accommodating us on fairly short notice. 

     If you haven’t been out there, you need to go.  Find their website, pick an activity you enjoy, and join in on the fun.  You won’t be disappointed.  And don’t miss their recycled outdoor gear sale on Saturday morning, June 20 (and donate some of yours).

     We still need mowers or 4-wheelers (with legal, responsible drivers) with trailers to help sell pop and water in the parade on June 17.  Please call me at 320-250-0464.  Call Sheri at 320-310-4580 to volunteer an hour or two at the root beer float stand on Tuesday and Wednesday at the carnival.