When was the last time you went on an outdoor adventure? 20 years ago? 15 years ago? Never? Well, Take It Outside Excursions aims to change that.
Founders Amy Devine and Adrian Hogel, who are high school friends born and raised in Cincinnati, are avid travelers who want to show others just how they can use the outdoor world to find a healthy, fun, sustainable way to exercise.
With that thought in mind, they launched Take It Outside Excursions, offering all-inclusive getaways to introduce or reacquaint you with the great outdoors of the Midwest and beyond.
“We are a Cincinnati-based travel outfit equipped to lead you and your friends on the next exciting outdoor adventure,” says Devine. “Our excursions include transportation, accommodations, meals, outdoor activities for athletic/non-athletic levels and lots of fun and comradery.”
The duo adds that when you return home you’re sure to feel energized, refreshed, confidence, and you’ll be bringing back a little extra know-how.
Whether it’s on water or on land, Take It Outside Excursions wants to show others what nature has to offer, starting with the regions that is oftentimes the most overlooked: The Midwest.
Activities from Take It Outside Excursions include, but are not limited to, kayaking, yoga, rock climbing, camping, Reiki, hiking, trail/road running, cycling, WFA, wine tastings, brew tours, live music, stand-up paddleboarding (SUP), birding, wildlife education, nature photography, meditation, and Shinrin-yoku.
While outdoor adventures can make you think about safety, you’ll be in good hands with Devine and Hogel. Devine was a full-time employee at P&G for 12 years before she left her desk job to travel, kayak, camp, and backpack while also securing a few certifications along the way. Today, her biggest passions include spending time in nature and coordinating events and trips where she can enjoy nature.
Hogel is a rock climber and yogi who spent her post-college years out West where she was able to hone in on her outdoor and climbing skills while also working at an environmental planner and ecologist. Today, the duo consider themselves to be a “yin and yang in their approach to this business, ensuring that all athletic levels and personalities find comfort, inclusiveness, and excitement on their excursions.”
Currently, Devine and Hogel offer two published excursions including a 3-night paddle/yoga/winery tour weekend in Bellaire, Michigan, and a 2-night camping/trail running/rock climbing weekend at the Red River Gorge in Slade, Kentucky.
“We have several other trips lined up that will be published later this summer after our July 23 launch,” adds Hogel.
Below are a few additional trips and their offerings, according to Hogel and Devine:
- Hocking Hills: trails, camping, zip-lining, photography
- Nemacolin Overnight: yoga, reiki, meditation
- Adams/Brown County: day trip for wine tasting on bikes (with shuttle)
- Brookville Lake/Wolf Creek Habitat: day trip for birding, hiking, and meeting the wolves
- Winter weekend in Mohican State Park: lodge stay, snow hikes, winter birding, and fireplaces
- Pennsylvania Downhill: ski trip
- USWWC Charlotte: SUP/kayaking the Catawba River, canopy ropes courses, zip-lining, live music
- New River Gorge: whitewater rafting, trails, swimming/rock jumping at Summersville Lake
- AEP RecLands: trails, camping, kayaking
- Northern Michigan: Traverse kayaking and brewery tours
- WFA Day Trips and Overnights: Visiting state parks all over the Midwest
- Survival 101 Camp Trips
Devine and Hogel say that the goal of Take It Outside Excursions is to provide affordable trips for any budget. “Since we are local, and we cover transportation by vehicle, we can eliminate expensive airfare charges,” says Devine.
Trips run anywhere from $50 per person to $500 per person, depending on the trip length, accommodations, staffing, and the intensity of the agenda.
The current trip to Northern Michigan is 50% off at $440 per person. This includes transportation, a 3-night stay at a Bellaire lake house, all meals/drinks/snacks, 3 professionally-guided sunset paddles, 2 professionally-guided sunrise yoga sessions, 1-2 professionally-guided trail runs, an afternoon of wine tastings on the Old Mission Peninsula, and lots of photography and sightseeing.
The trip to Red River Gorge is also 50% off, at $225 per person. It includes transportation, 2 nights of camping with all gear provided, all meals/snacks/drinks, 4-hour rock climbing 1-1 instruction via AMGA, professionally-guided trail runs and hikes, and campfires in the evening.
Currently, Take It Outside Excursions is run out of Mt. Washington on Cincinnati’s East Side. The central meeting location for trips and events will take place at Revolution Fitness in Newtown, where Devine teaches kayaking, and several Take It Outside staff members belong as gym members. Revolution Fitness is also the gym of Mary Beth Riesenberg, who has been a friend and collaborator of Take It Outside since the beginning.
Devine and Hogel say that they will likely begin the search for a storefront next year, in either Anderson, Newtown, or Milford. They also hope to include a local gear trade section of the business because they believe that enjoying the outdoors shouldn’t be expensive.
In the meantime, Devine and Hogel say that they are busy preparing for the Take It Outside Excursions Launch Party on July 23 at Revolution Fitness from 4-8 p.m. The party will include local outfitters and vendors, beer trucks, food trucks, music, raffles, and giveaways. They also add that one lucky person will win a free Take It Outside Excursion trip. And if you want to get in the outdoor state-of-mind, there will be a fleet of kayaks and SUPs for adults and youth to take out on the lake behind Revolution Fitness.
To learn more about Take It Outside Excursions, visit www.tioexcursions.com. You can also like them on Facebook and follow along on their outdoor adventures on Instagram. The ladies say that you can also win prizes by using the hashtag #TIOEX on your own adventures or visits around the Midwest.