After the days of social isolation and self quarantine, perhaps no celebration would be more appreciated. Of course, we still need to wear masks and maintain six feet of separation but places like Sagamore Hill, Planting Fields Arboretum and Bayard Cutting Arboretum have their grounds open for us to enjoy.
Travel by train or plane is still in the future. But this might be a good time to think about where you’d like to experience the Great Outdoors. May I suggest the Ken Burns’ documentary about the National Parks? David Duncan’s companion book, The National Parks: America’s Best Idea*, is also an informative and enjoyable read. The library also has many travel books by Fodor, Frommer, and Moon handbooks about the various national parks and other fascinating places just waiting to be explored.
Leave Only Footprints: My Acadia-to-Zion Journey* by Conor Knighton and The Hour of the Land* by Terry Tempest Williams offer thoughtful appreciations of the National Park System.
Some of my favorite armchair reading would include Florence Williams’ The Nature Fix: Why Nature Makes Us Happier, Healthier and More Creative*. Combining an appreciation of nature and an interesting look at U.S. history is Andrea Wulf’s Founding Gardeners: The Revolutionary Generation: Nature, and the Shaping of the American Nation*. Or travel to Alaska with Jon Krakuer in Into the Wild. Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods* is a delightful hike along the Appalachian Train.
Now that the library has curbside pickup you can get these books in print. *Many of these titles are also available as ebooks or audio books on Overdrive or Hoopla. Try searching the catalog for “national parks” or “natural history” or “outdoor recreation.”
But after you have chosen your book: take a hike, ride a bike, catch a fish (or try), smell the fresh air!
-posted by Brenda, Reference Services