Service outings provide people an opportunity for “hands on” conservation through activities which result in restoration of the environment, protection of the environment or better access to natural areas. In addition to these benefits, there is always the opportunity on service outings to learn about a whole bunch of topics related to the environment.
The main activities service outings get involved in are:
- Building, removing or repairing trails. This has sometimes involved very strenuous work, but it has always been rewarding – especially when combined with an overnight campout and potluck dinner.
- Removal of alien species. No, not little green people, but those plants from foreign lands such as Amur honeysuckle and garlic mustard that are so invasive the native plants can’t survive.
- Restoration of natural areas. Prairies and wetlands have become endangered ecological systems in the Midwest. Our service outings have provided much valuable assistance in helping with the restoration of hundreds of acres of prairies and wetlands that were destroyed when the pioneers settled here.
- Supporting sustainable agriculture. One of the Sierra Clubs goals is a sustainable agriculture, especially organic farming, so people are exposed to less pesticides and herbicides and the fertility of the soil is maintained through composing, etc. One of the avenues for carrying that out is through service outings that help Grailville with their organic vegetable farm.
Look over the outings calendar for service outings; you will find at least one every month (during decent weather). If you like getting your hands dirty, if you like good old fashioned work outdoors as you help the environment, try a couple of service outings. You may find that they provide just the right of mixture of satisfaction (with helping the environment), outdoor activity, camaraderie and opportunity to learn that appeals to you.