Despite a steady rain, 16 American Forests’ supporters showed up for a beautiful stroll through the least visited part of New York’s Central Park called the North Woods over the weekend. This was the inaugural event for American Forests Walkabouts, a newly created program that provides opportunities for members and their friends to get out and enjoy forests in their own city or out in the wilderness.

American Forests supporters explore Central Park's North Woods
American Forests supporters explore Central Park’s North Woods. Credit: American Forests

Regina Alvarez, former director of horticulture and woodland management for the Central Park Conservancy, guided our walk and did a wonderful job of teaching us all about the history of the North Woods, as well as the invasive species the park is trying to get under control and the importance of this urban park for New York, which American Forests named one of the 10 Best Cities for Urban Forests earlier this year. During the walk, we took time to enjoy the North Woods’ bridges, tunnels, waterfalls and, most importantly, trees and the wildlife that lives amid them. Who knew there were such natural waterfalls in Central Park?!?

Because American Forests is proud to take its friends out into the forest and show them our work, I will be creating many more free experiences like this across the country, including in cities like Pasadena, Dallas, Portland, Seattle and Washington, D.C.! In addition, I will be looking into opportunities to take members to places where they can encounter the giant redwood or see the monarch butterflies in their Mexican winter home. To be informed instantly when events are occurring near you, become a member and supporter of American Forests today. And stay tuned here at Loose Leaf, as I’ll be back to share further Walkabout adventures.