Awe Moments Await in Victoria, Chanhassen and Your Own Backyard!
Experiencing awe-inspiring moments is said to connect us with others, help us see things in new ways and make us both nicer and happier. It’s possible it can also promote health and healing, which may help explain recent studies that link exposure to nature with lower blood pressure, stronger immune systems and more.
In Paula Spencer Scott’s article, “Feeling Awe May be the Secret to Health and Happiness” (Parade Magazine, October 9, 2016), she included “7 Ways to Find Awe in Everyday Life.” The top three tips resonated with me – here’s my own revised version:
- Look up ─ put your devices away and pause to enjoy the sky – the clouds by day, the stars by night.
To maximize your awe experience, attend a Star Party at the Eagle Lake Observatory in Baylor Park in Norwood-Young America. Upcoming Star parties are on October 22, November 5 and November 19 from 7 – 10 pm.
- Look around ─ seek places of beauty at a local park like Carver Park Reserve in Victoria, or the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Chanhassen.
Last Sunday, my husband and I took the awe challenge and explored a 5.1 mile loop that started south of the entrance to the Lowry Nature Center within Carver Park Reserve. The sun was shining, the weather was perfect for a fall outing, and the views were awe-inspiring.
We passed by four lakes and shared the trail with other hikers, bikers, dog walkers and even someone training for cross country skiing on skates.
We had a wonderful time enjoying the colors of fall and reveling in the beauty of nature. We came away refreshed and encouraged by time together in the great outdoors.
If you prefer finding your awe moments closer to home, however, try the next tip –
- Look next door ─ or in your own yard ─ and take an “Awe Walk” around the neighborhood. Take a few minutes and seek to notice things as if for the first time. You might be surprised, as I was, by the color I discovered right outside my front door!
What kind of awe-inspiring moments have you had recently?
Carver Park Reserve is open from 5 a.m. until 10 p.m. daily and no fees or permits are required. For more information contact Three Rivers Park District: 763-694-7860; threeriversparks.org
The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum offers FREE admission this coming Monday, October 17 from noon to 6 pm.