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Travel Cultures Language

Best Way to Experience Yosemite?

by Eva Boynton on January 16, 2017

A view of Yosemite Valley, showing that to experience Yosemite fully all you need to do is open you eyes. (image © Sam Anaya)

Mountains of experience reach beyond the edge of the picture frame. 
© Sam Anaya

Open Your Eyes, Take Home the Full Picture

Whenever I set foot in Yosemite, I feel the need to capture the grandeur of nature, extend the experience, and take it home with me. But, on this trip, I put my camera down and heeded a quote from Henry David Thoreau:

I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.

First, Dare to Be Wild

by Joyce McGreevy on July 25, 2016

The Art of Gardening to Save the World

A close-up prairie flower in Chicago's Lurie Garden reflects the trend toward wild gardening. Image © Joyce McGreevy

Up close, a wildflower is a world.
© Joyce McGreevy

Here’s what happens when landscape designers dare to be wild. Lavender hyssop, maroon prairie smoke, blue quamash, and frothy calamint run rampant in all directions. The work of creative problem solvers, wild gardening centers you in the heart of nature.

Native spiderwort flourish in Chicago's Lurie Garden, thanks to wild gardening. Image © Joyce McGreevy

Native spiderwort and wild grasses grow knee-high in Midwestern fields.
© Joyce McGreevy

A Wild Surprise

Now, look skyward. See the skyscrapers. You’re standing in the center of America’s third largest urban area. Welcome to Chicago, city of wild surprises.

American Cultural Heritage: Public Libraries

by Meredith Mullins on January 25, 2016

One-room green library in Allensworth, CA, one of the public libraries showing America's cultural heritage. (Image © Robert Dawson.)

Library built by ex-slaves, Allensworth, California
© Robert Dawson

The Art of Getting on the Same Page

Shhh. No talking. Let the books and walls and shelves speak for themselves. If you’re quiet, you can hear the sound of knowledge. The call to adventure. The whisper of imagination.

It all happens at public libraries—a part of American cultural heritage that has opened so many doors, providing free access to information and the freedom to learn.

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