The Outdoor Foundation hosted the Outsiders Ball event to support projects and ideas to get young people in the outdoors and active.
This event kicked off a $5 million campaign to engage young people in the outdoors by raising $335,000 with support from 900 guests. Although it was a charity event, it was more about raising awareness than raising funds.
Interactive areas were set-up around the Gallivan Center. Each of these stations engaged the audience by teaching ways to rediscover a connection with nature or by asking for input on certain topics. Large chalkboards were also positioned throughout the event with questions, encouraging guests to write down their thoughts. This sparked conversation about different issues dealing with the outdoors.
Gregg Bagni, who spoke at the Ideation station, said "This is the most abnormal fundraiser you've ever been to." The idea behind the station was to brainstorm ways to share, mentor, relate, appreciate, create, inspire and amaze others on the outdoors.
Les Stroud welcoming the crows to the event
Les Stroud, the host and creator of the TV series Survivorman, welcomed guests to the event. Stroud has a love for connecting people with nature. He says our natural connection to nature is a scientific need and as we lose this connection, our IQs begin to suffer. "If we're plugging in, we should be plugging in to nature," Stroud says. "For God's sake, let your kids get back out there and get their hands dirty . . . It doesn't have to be in the jungle; it could be at the corner park."
Vice President of Marketing at The North Face Aaron Carpenter; Photographer for National Geographic Jimmy Chin; professional rock climber Conrad Anker
A live auction allowed guests to bid on adventures with outdoor enthusiasts and art pieces from outdoor photographers and artists. Skip Yowell was featured as the Outsider of the Year for his 50 years of dedication to the cause of getting more young people outside.
To show even more support for the cause, an after party featured Les Stroud playing with his band The Campfire Kings.