Tent Revival: The Texas Outdoor Family Program – Texas Parks and Wildlife [Official]


>>AS ON MOST WEEKENDS,
RYAN SPENCER IS PACKING FOR A TRIP.>>WE DO ABOUT 36
WEEKENDS A YEAR.>>YOU COULD CALL
IT A MISSION TRIP.>>I WORK OUT OF A TRAILER
AND WE GO ALL OVER THE STATE. IT’S A UNIQUE OFFICE,
BUT I REALLY LOVE IT. (truck starts)>>RYAN TRAVELS TO WIN CONVERTS,
BUT HIS MISSION IS NOT A RELIGIOUS ONE. YOU MIGHT SAY HE’S AN
OUTDOOR EVANGELIST.>>I GO FROM PARK TO PARK AND
SHOW PEOPLE HOW TO GO CAMPING FOR THE FIRST TIME. I’M AN OUTDOOR EDUCATION
SPECIALIST AT TEXAS PARKS AND WILDLIFE, AND I SPECIALIZE
IN GETTING PEOPLE OUTSIDE AND CONNECTING THEM WITH NATURE.>>TODAY, RYAN IS AT
BLANCO STATE PARK, INTRODUCING SOME FAMILIES TO
CAMPING ON BEHALF OF THE TEXAS OUTDOOR FAMILY PROGRAM.>>STUDIES HAVE SHOWN THAT
CHILDREN WHO SPEND TIME OUTSIDE ARE HEALTHIER, HAPPIER, AND
STRONGER, THEY DO BETTER IN SCHOOL, AND THEY HAVE BETTER
FAMILY COHESION, SO THAT MEANS THAT CHILDREN WHO SPEND MORE
TIME WITH THEIR PARENTS OUTSIDE BECOME NICER TEENAGERS
WHEN THEY GROW UP, SO THEY’RE ALL GOOD REASONS. BUT WE’RE GOING TO TRY
TO MAKE IT EASY FOR YOU. WE’RE GOING TO GO
THROUGH EACH ITEM. WE TEACH ABOUT “LEAVE NO TRACE,”
AND HOW TO PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT WHILE YOU’RE
OUT THERE ENJOYING IT. WE WANT TO GIVE THEM SOME SKILLS
THAT THEY CAN REPEAT ON THEIR OWN WHEN THEY COME BACK TO THE
STATE PARKS, SO THINGS LIKE COOKING ON A CAMP STOVE,
SETTING UP A TENT. WE’LL JUST UNFOLD
THIS THING LIKE SO. WE’VE GOT A SERIES
OF ALUMINUM POLES. WE’LL JUST LAY
THAT THROUGH THERE.>>WATCHING CAREFULLY ARE
KARENIA HOLLOWAY, HER MOTHER, KAREN, AND FRIEND, ISAIAH. THE HOLLOWAYS HAVE ONLY
CAMPED ONCE BEFORE.>>THE FIRST CAMPING TRIP
I DID WAS BACK IN DECEMBER. AND THAT WAS ALL NEW FOR ME,
AND WE HAD A BLAST AND I REALLY ENJOYED IT.>>MY DAUGHTER’S KIND OF A
NATURAL AT IT, SHE JUST LIKES BEING OUTDOORS,
WHICH DRAWS ME IN. AND WE’RE ENJOYING TODAY.>>I WAS TALKING TO KARENIA AND
SHE ASKED ME IF I WANTED TO GO, AND MY INITIAL
REACTION WAS ‘NO.’>>HE DIDN’T WANT TO GO CAMPING,
IF SOMETHING CRAWLED ON HIM HE WAS OUT.>>I LIKE BEING INSIDE WITH
THE AC, BUT YOU KNOW GETTING OUT HERE NOW, IT JUST,
IT FEELS GOOD.>>YOUNG NEIGHBOR, CALVIN, HAS
ALSO BEEN INVITED ALONG, AND HE’S PRETTY EXCITED TO SPEND
HIS FIRST NIGHT IN THE OUTDOORS.>>HE’S BEEN VERY EXCITED TODAY. JUST REALLY HARD
TO KEEP HIM STILL. SETTING UP THE TENT, I MEAN HE
JUST JUMPED RIGHT IN THERE.>>NEED HELP?>>WHEN HE FIRST PULLED OUT
ALL THE STUFF IT WAS A LITTLE INTIMIDATING. IT WASN’T THAT DIFFICULT.>>PERFECT!>>YOU’RE NOT ALONE. YOU KNOW, YOU CAN DO THIS. AND IF YOU NEED HELP,
ASK FOR HELP.>>THERE YOU GO. WE’VE GOT THE STRONGEST
MAN ON THE JOB. (laughs) THIS ACTUALLY GIVES YOU A TIME
TO COME TOGETHER AND JUST TALK TO ONE ANOTHER AND JUST
EXPERIENCE LIFE TOGETHER. AND SO THAT’S SOMETHING THAT
WE DON’T ALWAYS GET THE OPPORTUNITY TO DO.>>OTHER CAMPERS ARE
HERE FOR SIMILAR REASONS.>>WE THOUGHT THIS WOULD BE A
GREAT WAY TO KIND OF GET THE KIDS OUTSIDE OF THE HOUSE,
AWAY FROM THE TECHNOLOGY – THE IPADS, UH, TELEVISION,
AND REALIZING BEING OUTDOORS, HAVING SOME FUN OUTSIDE CAN BE A
GREAT WAY TO SPEND THE WEEKEND.>>A LITTLE TECHNOLOGY
CAN HELP THE TRANSITION.>>DO YOU KNOW WHAT GPS STANDS
FOR, DOES ANYBODY KNOW?>>I KNOW GPS….>>THERE’S TWO
SPHERES OF THOUGHT. ONE IS THAT WE PLUCK KIDS AWAY
FROM TECHNOLOGY COMPLETELY. AND THE OTHER IS THAT WE
KIND OF EASE THEM INTO IT….>>IT’S A FUN DAY TODAY.>>…I’M KIND OF A
FAN OF THE LATTER.>>WE DO WHAT WE CALL A
MODERN-DAY TREASURE HUNT.>>GEOCACHING FOR EXAMPLE.>>THERE ARE A BUNCH OF
SATELLITES UP IN THE SKY TO ACTUALLY RELAY YOUR EXACT
LOCATION AND COORDINATES ONTO THIS THING.>>THIS ONE GOES NORTH?>>TECHNOLOGY MAY TEND
TO KEEP US INDOORS, BUT GEOCACHING COMBINES GADGETS
WITH OUTDOOR EXPLORATION.>>SO YOU’RE CLOSE. IT SAYS WHAT? OH, THEY ALREADY FOUND IT.>>YEA! (music)>>I DON’T KNOW WHERE IT IS. I LIKED GOING AROUND AND
FINDING STUFF WITH THE GPS. IT’S RIGHT IN THIS AREA.>>CALVIN REALLY ENJOYED THE
GEOCACHING AND JUST EVEN SEEING WHAT’S OUT HERE
WAS REALLY NICE. HE WAS ON THE HUNT
FOR SOMETHING. (laughs)>>IT HAS TO BE ONE
OF THESE PLANTS. OHHHH!>>YOU FOUND IT!>>EVERYONE LOVES
A TREASURE HUNT…>>…REGARDLESS OF
THE TREASURE ITSELF.>>WHAT IS IT?>>I DON’T KNOW, IT’S A
PIECE OF PAPER.>>YEAH, THAT WAS A LOT OF FUN. WE SPENT A NICE CHUNK OF TIME
LOCATING A COUPLE OF THINGS AND THE KIDS ENJOYED THE
EXCITEMENT OF FINDING A LITTLE TREASURE.>>BY AFTERNOON, THE COOL
BLANCO RIVER IS CALLING.>>YEPPITY-DO, SIR.>>AND THERE’S ANOTHER
WAY TO ENJOY THE WATER….>>KAYAKING!>>…PADDLING A KAYAK IS A
NEW EXPERIENCE FOR CALVIN.>>YOU EXCITED?>>YES SIR.>>HIGH FIVE? THAT’S WHAT’S UP. ALRIGHT.>>AT FIRST HE DIDN’T WANT TO DO
IT, BUT THEN UH AFTER WE GOT IN THE BOAT, SMOOTH SAILING,
HE WAS ALL FOR IT.>>YEAH, CALVIN. THAT’S GOOD!>>GOING UP THE RIVER, DOWN
THE RIVER, YEAH, PRETTY COOL.>>UH OH.>>WE WERE OUT ONE DIRECTION,
AND THEN WE WERE OUT ANOTHER DIRECTION, AND FINALLY
MY DAUGHTER SAID, “MOM, JUST PUT YOUR PADDLE DOWN! JUST SIT AND RELAX!”>>I REALLY LIKED BEING IN
THE WATER BECAUSE IT’S REALLY SERENE, AND
IT’S KIND OF PEACEFUL. BUT IT’S HARD TO KIND OF STEER. I TRIED. (laughs)>>THEY RAN INTO US. I DON’T KNOW IF YOU
SAW THAT COLLISION. (laughs)>>BUT AFTER THAT
IT WAS PRETTY GOOD.>>IT WAS JUST SOMETHING I’D
NEVER DONE BEFORE, SO MAYBE IF I DO IT A FEW MORE
TIMES MAYBE IT WILL FINALLY GET THROUGH TO MY BRAIN
WHAT TO DO EXACTLY. BUT I HAD FUN. (music)>>NEVER DONE KAYAKING BEFORE,
THIS WAS THE FIRST TIME, UH SO I WAS A LITTLE BIT
HESITANT, I DIDN’T KNOW IF HE WAS GOING TO LIKE IT OR NOT,
AND UH HE ENJOYED IT.>>AND THERE ARE MORE FIRSTS
FOR THE FOLGAR FAMILY, WHO HAIL FROM A PLACE WHERE
CAMPING DOESN’T COME NATURALLY.>>FROM NEW YORK CITY. THE CLOSEST I’VE BEEN TO CAMPING
WAS IN 2004 WE HAD A BLACKOUT. (laughs)>>BUT THE LACK OF EXPERIENCE
DOESN’T KEEP AIDEN FROM CATCHING HIS FIRST FISH.>>FIRST ONE EVER. THAT’S A PRETTY COOL FISH AIDEN.>>YEAH.>>PRETTY AWESOME. (high five)>>OF COURSE A FISH IS NOT
GUARANTEED FOR EVERY FAMILY…>>WHAT AM I DOING WRONG?>>…BUT SOME GUIDANCE
IS ALWAYS AVAILABLE.>>HMMM.>>WE’RE GOING TO
GO ONE DIRECTION…>>THAT WAS SOMETHING
COMPLETELY NEW FOR ME. GOING OUT THERE AND REALLY
TRYING TO WORK OUT CASTING IT. YOU MAKE IT LOOK REALLY EASY. YOU HAVE TO REALLY JUST GET IT
RIGHT WHEN YOU’RE CLICKING THE BUTTON, BUT THAT WAS FUN,
SO I WOULD DO THAT AGAIN. I WOULD.>>I DIDN’T REEL IN THE GATOR. BUT YOU KNOW, MAYBE NEXT TIME. (music)>>WHEN I WAS A KID, I GREW UP
IN THE CONCRETE JUNGLE KNOWN AS DALLAS-FORT WORTH,
SPENT MOST OF MY LIFE THERE, AND WE SPENT A LOT OF TIME
JUST IN THE CITY. AND MY DAD SAT US DOWN AND SAID
WELL YOU GUYS ARE GOING TO GET OUTSIDE, AND SO HE DECIDED RIGHT
THEN AND THERE THAT HE WAS GOING TO MAKE A COMMITMENT TO ME
AND MY BROTHER TO GO CAMPING ALL THE TIME. WE WENT CAMPING EVERY SINGLE
MONTH FOR SEVEN YEARS AS A FAMILY, AND SO I DEVELOPED THIS
REAL LOVE FOR GETTING OUTSIDE AND WE’RE STILL VERY VERY CLOSE,
AND I THINK IT HAS A LOT TO DO WITH THE FACT THAT WE
WENT CAMPING SO MUCH. (music)>>WHAT TIME IS IT?>>A WEEKEND IS OVER QUICKLY…>>OH DARN.>>…SO ONE OUTING MAY
NOT MAKE LIFELONG CAMPERS.>>WE MAKE IT EASY FOR FOLKS
TO COME OUT AND TRY IT FOR THE FIRST TIME. WE TRY TO TAKE THE SCARINESS
AWAY FROM CAMPING. AND JUST DROP IT IN. THANK YOU VERY MUCH.>>ONE WEEKEND CAN INTRODUCE THE
SIMPLE JOYS OF GETTING OUTDOORS TOGETHER.>>THEY SHOW YOU HOW TO CAMP. WE’RE HIGHLY SATISFIED WITH
WHAT THE TEXAS OUTDOOR FAMILY DID FOR OUR FAMILY.>>WE JUST TRY TO MAKE SURE
THAT THE EXPERIENCES THAT THEY HAVE WITH US, THEY HAVE
THE CONFIDENCE TO GO OUT AND DO ON THEIR OWN AGAIN.>>THE NEXT TIME I DO THIS,
BECAUSE YOU KNOW THERE WILL BE A NEXT TIME, I ENJOYED IT
THAT MUCH, I’M GOING TO BRING SOME INSECT REPELLENT. YEAH. OTHER THAN THAT, YEAH, WILL
DEFINITELY TRY IT AGAIN. DEFINITELY. (music)>>MY WIFE, SHE’S EAGER TO
BE A PART OF THIS AS WELL.>>GOT EVERYBODY?>>1-2-3>>OUTDOOR FAMILY!>>I HOPE TO BRING MORE
PEOPLE THE NEXT TIME THAT HAVEN’T DONE IT, JUST SO
THEY CAN EXPERIENCE IT.>>IT’S NICE TO DO SOMETHING
DIFFERENT AND UH HAVE SOME NICE TIME OUT WITH THE
FAMILY AND FRIENDS.>>I’M THE ONE WHO HAS
TO PUT EVERYTHING AWAY. EVERYTHING HAD A PLACE AND NOW
IT’S BASICALLY JUST LIKE… (throws bag)>>WE’LL PROBABLY TRY IT AGAIN
SOMETIME THROUGHOUT THE SUMMER. (laughs)>>OH I THINK HE’LL
ALWAYS HAVE THIS MEMORY. HE’S HAD A GREAT OUTING.>>I’VE BEEN SO BLESSED TO
HELP CONNECT KIDS WITH NATURE AND WITH THEIR FAMILIES. THAT’S WHAT IT’S
ALL ABOUT TO ME. (closing door) FAMILIES HAD A BLAST. ALL THE STUFF’S BACK IN THE
TRAILER, IT’S A GOOD DAY!>>SO, WITH THE LAST FAMILY
PACKED UP, RYAN’S TENT REVIVAL HEADS TO ITS NEXT STATE PARK.>>IT REVITALIZES YOU TO GET
TO SEE ALL THESE FAMILIES COME TOGETHER IN OUR STATE PARKS,
BECAUSE THAT’S WHAT THESE PARKS ARE HERE FOR.>>TO SEE A CALENDAR OF UPCOMING
WORKSHOPS NEAR YOU, VISIT OUR WEBSITE, AND JOIN THE TEXAS
OUTDOOR FAMILY CONGREGATION.

5 thoughts on “Tent Revival: The Texas Outdoor Family Program – Texas Parks and Wildlife [Official]

  1. Great information. Looking forward to taking advantage of a Texas OutdoorΒ Family weekend. I want to learn how to kayak!

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