SAVE THESE DATES for the Fifth Annual All Trails Challenge
Thursday, Aug. 6, 6 p.m. — ATC 2020 Virtual Warm-Up Information Event
Learn about the ATC mileage tracking and hike apps, setting up your fundraising page, tips for getting donors, sharing updates with friends and family, limiting exposure during the time of COVID-19 and more. Register at fow.org/event/atc-2020-virtual-warm-up-information-event.
Monday, Aug. 17 — Advance registration for FOW members
Monday, Aug. 31 — Official ATC start date
In 2016, Friends of the Wissahickon launched the All Trails Challenge as a way for people to explore the Wissahickon Valley Park’s 1,800 acres and 50+ trails while also supporting the continuation of FOW’s extensive conservation work. Since then, this event has grown in popularity and impact, engaging 1,500 donors and Challengers, and with 24,000 miles explored and more than $103,000 raised for park preservation.
The fifth annual ATC kicks off Monday, Aug. 17 for FOW members, Monday, Aug. 31 for the general public, and continues through Wednesday, Dec. 2.
ATC isn’t a race, and you don’t have to be a conditioned athlete to take part. It’s a fun, family “friendly” activity that invites people of all ages and fitness levels to hike, walk, run, bike or horseback ride through every corner of the beautiful Wissahickon. (Dogs, on leash, of course, love it too!)
Many people rarely go beyond Forbidden Drive when visiting Wissahickon Valley Park, let alone exploring all 50 scenic trails. Now is your chance to truly go the distance: Discovering new — and often lesser travelled — trails is a great way to add social distance between you and more crowded areas. At the same time, you will be helping safeguard the future of the park that adds so much to our quality of life.
The Wissahickon is always there when our bodies and minds need healing, for which we were especially grateful during the height of the pandemic’s restrictions. The significant health benefits of spending time outside, including reducing heart disease and high blood pressure due to stress, have been widely documented. Overall, it just feels good to get fresh air and move your body.
These, along with other factors, have motivated ATC participants in the past, as you can see from these comments we’ve collected over the years. Maybe they will motivate you to take the Challenge as well:
- “I love the park — have been walking some trails for 35 years. But always the same trails; I never ventured to the Roxborough side, for example.”
- “I wanted to know I’ve been on every bit of trail. I’m a Trail Ambassador and am in the woods a lot, but there were crannies I hadn’t been on.”
- “I have had significant health problems in the last few years… I joined the Challenge to affirm health and to have motivation to explore ‘unknown’ parts of the park.”
- “I have hiked a lot of the Wissahickon trails already and figured, why not raise money for doing something I love!”
- “We love the Wissahickon and wanted more time to connect our children to it!”
- “There are trails I’ve never been on, despite having grown up here, and my wife hadn’t been on more than a few trails (repeatedly) before joining the Challenge.”
- “I was new to the area and had a busy fiancé in medical school and a puppy who needed to work off his energy.”
Once you register as an ATC Challenger and start sharing your progress, you’re well on the path toward fabulous prizes for mileage and more. Along the way, while you help fundraise for FOW’s trail improvement projects, you’ll also be getting cool swag and building a Challenger community at ATC events. (All participants must register with a minimum of $50 raised or contributed to be eligible to compete for any prizes.)
You can find more participation information at fow.org/alltrailschallenge — visit often for regular updates and news about incentives, giveaways, and prizes. And keep up with the ATC fun by following @FOWissahickon and #FOWAllTrails on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
This year, we’re proud to welcome Chestnut Hill Hospital as the Presenting ATC sponsor, and our early sponsors Univest, AQUA, Kouvenda Media, and Chestnut Hill Brewing Co. Sponsorship opportunities are still available by contacting Maeve Pollack at firstname.lastname@example.org.