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Business North - Around The Region - Duluth & Superior Newspaper
New business helps reconnect people with outdoors
PHOTO: Andrea Gordon
As a high school student, Andrea Gordon discovered the power of rock climbing along Lake Superior’s North Shore. She found that scaling the bluffs along the world’s largest freshwater lake was exhilarating and gave her a new perspective on life.
“It was about finding my own success,” Gordon says. “I wanted to share that feeling with other people.”
After working as an outdoor educator and administrator, Gordon has returned to her hometown of Duluth to start Self Discovery Adventures, a company committed to helping busy people hit the “pause” button and reconnect with themselves and others outdoors.
Self Discovery Adventures offers wellness retreats that include canoeing, kayaking, biking and hiking in the summer and skiing, snowshoeing and dogsledding in the winter. All combine physical fitness, art and culture, as well as time for participants to bond and enjoy the experience together.
“Our emphasis is offering introductory-level programs to expose people to new activities that they might love and that can become lifelong healthy pursuits,” Gordon says. “When they leave us, we’d like them to say that their perspective on life has changed, that they realize life has more to offer and that they can get more out of each day.
Unique about the programs, she said, is that they offer a traditional summer camp experience to adults.
"From arts and crafts to games to making new friends and playing outside, it’s all of the benefits of the camp experience, but for adults,” she said.
The activities are strongly rooted in the Lake Superior region.
“We eat smoked fish and wild rice and sit around the campfire hearing Minnesota stories,” Gordon says. "This really is the right time and the right place for this.”
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