Minneapolis-based Ambassador Shannon Conk is an educator and environmentalist. Shannon joined The Cairn Project’s team to raise support for programs that provide young women safe spaces to test their abilities, understand their fears, and build courage and confidence.
This summer, Shannon will take on an urban multi-sport challenge as a tribute to adventures that can be accessed within city limits. Shannon’s bike-paddle-run-walk-swim adventure will begin and end in one of Minneapolis’ many public parks and will follow bike paths and public trails.
The city of Minneapolis is one of the greenest major cities in the country owing to its 266 public parks, 22 lakes, and 102 miles of biking and walking paths. The Trust For Public Land ranks Minneapolis 3rd in the country for park accessibility, with 97% of all residents located within a 10 minute walk of a parkspace. Established in 1883, The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board oversees the city’s urban park system.
“The time I’ve spent on outdoor pursuits has given me more confidence than any other endeavor. The fear I’ve felt alone in the woods, or atop a steep snowy slope, or right below a bolt with sweaty fingers, has forced me to be vulnerable and brave. The solitude I’ve found in these places has healed me from the most difficult places my life has taken me. Because the outdoors has done so much for me, I feel strongly about the need to address some of the gender constructs and economic disparities that obstruct all girls from having the opportunity to have a relationship with the natural environment around them.”