(North Bay, ON.  April 21, 2023)  As part of the North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority’s (NBMCA) partnership with Community Oriented Outdoor Literacy (COOL), NBMCA is excited to announce the installation of a second story hike on the Kate Pace Way just in time for Earth Day.

“COOL came together to provide an outdoor activity that requires no special equipment or fees.  We know that time in the outdoors is important, and that both physical literacy and reading are lifelong skills.  Time spent together is priceless, and families can access the story hike when on the Conservation Authority trails whenever it is convenient for them,” said Connie Hergott,of the North Bay Mountain Bike Association, a member of the COOL committee.

The members of COOL who spearheaded the project include the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit, Northern Ontario School of Medicine, Nipissing University Library/Schulich School of Education, Near North District School Board, Les Compagnons des francs loisirs, and the North Bay Mountain Bike Association with the support of the North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority.

There is mounting evidence that time spent in nature has many benefits to well-being. The concept of a book outdoors provides a simple and fun way for families to read and reflect on the story together while enjoying a trail walk. Taking in some fresh air can improve our mental health, sharpen our cognition and helps to feel connected to our natural environment.

“In December the first Story Hike was installed on Laurentian Escarpment Conservation Area trails in partnership with COOL”, said Chitra Gowda, NBMCA CAO.  “The Kate Pace Way trail is a popular, multi-use trail in the watershed, and we look forward to the community, enjoying the trail, and reading the story which fosters outdoor literacy,” she added. 

“Kate Pace Way is a paved pathway that connects North Bay’s waterfront with neighborhoods and green spaces at the south end of the city.  To host the story hike featuring the children’s book “Outside You Notice” here on our trails brings together environmental education, outdoor appreciation, and family fitness.  We’re proud to be part of this community-led initiative,” said Dave Britton, NBMCA Chair.                                                       

The pages of the book are posted on the bridge going over the La Vase River on the Kate Pace Way, which is also a section of the Trans Canada Trail.  If you are interested in reading the story, you may access the Kate Pace Way at Lakeshore Drive. 

“Outdoor You Notice”, is based on how the outdoors can stir a child’s imagination.  Nature sparks wonder, wonder leads to curiosity, and curiosity brings about a greater knowledge of the world and one’s self.  Author Erin Alladin and Illustrator Andrea Blinick. 

North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority is one of 36 Conservation Authorities in Ontario responsible for watershed management on behalf of local municipalities, stakeholders, and the province.

The public can follow NBMCA on the web at nbmca.ca, Facebook (@theNBMCA) Twitter (@theNBMCA) and Instagram (nbmcainfo).



Paula Loranger, Community Relations Coordinator, cell:  705-494-5115