Tuesday, November 4, 2014

MOX 2014

During the weekend of October 3rd , Dayton's very own Five River MetroParks hosted one of the largest outdoor gear and experience festivals in the region. The Midwest Outdoor Experience is a two day one stop event for outdoor enthusiasts and adventurers alike. MOX creates an event where outdoor related companies such as REI, Field & Stream, and even Subaru come out to showcase new gear and encourage outdoor engagement. These great companies are further complimented by the mecca of fantastic food vendors, the great hub of bands, and all the hands on activities that are offered by sponsors and Fiver River Metro Parks.

I found myself starting off this event on Friday evening at the Rivermobile. During this evening, fellow River Stewards and myself were able to engage locals and educate them about the wonderful water resources this area has to offer. Perhaps even more interesting were the conversations held with out-of-towners. They equipped themselves, by learning about Dayton’s watershed, with questions and ideas to bring back to their own home areas. Soon night came, and I left to go rest for the next day.

Waking up Saturday was quite a shock. The wind was blowing, the clouds were filling the sky, and the thermometer was at a whopping 42 degrees Fahrenheit. My mindset was discouraged due to the weather; especially since I was suppose to be volunteering in a Kayak for the better part of the day. Needless to say that changed as soon as I got out on the water. Being able to paddle with fellow enthusiasts and introduce newcomers to the activity was 100% worth the cold. Sharing stories and giving advice on how to paddle seemed to push away the bite of the wind, and usher in the warmth of new friendships.

That evening when I reflected on the previous two days, good memories and the faces of new friends filled my mind. It was truly a joy to share a weekend with the outdoor community both as a River Steward and a fellow outdoors enthusiast. Despite the temperamental weather, this community was able to make the most of the situation, enjoying great food, legendary music, and experiencing all adventure activities that MOX had to offer.

Until next year,

Wallace James Huggett

Cohort of 2017

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