Give Springs A Break 2019
What stands out the most to me from this past weekend with the Florida Springs Institute at their annual Give Springs A Break retreat are the MANY incredible humans that I had the opportunity to get to know and spend time with. Coming from all different walks of life, each with their unique skill sets, these humans are true water protectors. And while they often make it look easy and fun - I know what we're up against. It often feels like the majority of the world either doesn't care about the severe state of our springs systems. Or worse, they care more about exploiting them in some way. Still, even in the face of years and years of extreme adversity - These water protectors CANNOT be stopped.
In this beautifully arranged event we heard from leading springs scientists, biologists, analysts, cave divers, chemists, freedivers, Florida's former State Senator, and many concerned young professionals -- All ready to do what ever it takes to protect our waters. Everyone showed up at the table setting differences aside to learn, inspire, and support one another to continue to do better.
The truth is that our springs - our aquifers - our waters are in a state of crisis. The truth is that every single one of us can do something about it. AND the truth is that it is not going to happen by standing idly by thinking that someone else is going to take care of it for you. We all must support one another in this fight for sustainably healthy waters.
Before I lay out some calls to action, I also want to be candid that even though this mission is extremely serious - I have never had so much fun with people learning how to save our springs. From the late night stories and night paddles down the spring run with fireflies lighting the way, to incredible workshops and early morning springs dips, s'mores around a campfire, SUP Yoga fun, and allll the unplanned magical moments in between - #GSAB19 was hands down one of the coolest events I've been a part of.
I left the weekend with a full heart, deep inspiration, and a great sense of courage to do my part in Springs protection and supporting those already doing amazing work.
BIGGEST THANK YOU'S to Tessa Skiles, Melissa Redon, Dr. Bob Knight and the Florida Springs Institute, The Florida Springs Council, Jim Gissy from Gissy Springs, and every single person for creating what felt like a once in a lifetime event that I know will continue on to inspire generations to come.
Many open arms were extended to me this weekend and I want to pay it forward. Please take my hand in joining the mission to protect the future of our water, people, and planet.
What can you do?
Support the Florida Springs Institute (https://floridaspringsinstitute.org/) and The Florida Springs Council (www.floridaspringscouncil.org) in SO many different ways. Start with visiting their awesome websites!
Talk to the people in charge of making serious decisions in your water districts - Schedule an appointment to go speak with your Representatives.
Educate yourself - The more you know, the better decisions you will make.
As business owners take the extra steps to put practices in place that create a community mindset of conservation and advocacy.
Participate in a clean up! Do you live in the North Central Florida Area? Check out Kings Of The Springs clean up group for a future event to participate in (https://business.facebook.com/TheKingsoftheSprings/).
Don't be afraid to talk to people when you're out there. If you see something, say something - with an open hand to join forces.
Every little step counts and every person can make a difference.
In a small effort to support this mission, when you take a SUP Yoga class with Cypress SUP (cypresssup.com) you are supporting the Florida Springs Institute with $1/person donated to support their mission in saving our Springs. We're excited to announce our first SUP Yoga Class is 6/22 at Rum Island - Please join us! Sign up at cypresssup.com and use code SUPYOGA5 at check out to save $5 off your first class!
Thank you for reading and supporting our springs.