A mission complete


This year, we set out on a mission, one that we couldn’t complete on our own – a mission that asked you to share your enthusiasm and your love for the outdoors.


And share, you did. You shared, we gave and now, kids win.


Earlier this year, in celebration of our 100th anniversary, L.L.Bean launched the Million Moment Mission with a goal to donate $1 million to the National Park Foundation. We invited you to share your outdoor moments with us – a hike up a historic mountain, a kayaking trip, a campout – and for each of those moments, we donated $1 to the National Park Foundation’s America’s Best Idea program, which connects underserved youths to the outdoors.


Thanks to you, kids across the country are already benefiting from new opportunities to hike, paddle and much more. These programs will soon have reached some 60,000 of America’s youths.


Voyageurs Program

Participants in the Voyageurs Program, an NPF American’s Best Idea grantee program


How did this Mission come to fruition? Outdoor enthusiasts across the nation mobilized for a movement to inspire the next generation to get outside. Many of you contributed by: sharing a photo of an outdoor activity on our Facebook page, participating in an Outdoor Discovery Schools course, attending our Hometown Celebration or a Bootmobile stop, and more.


GOGG Winner Kilimanjaro

A photo shared from a Gear Giveaway winner of her climb up Mt. Kilimanjaro



Moonlit Kayaking

A photo from a fan shared on our Facebook wall


Now, the mission is complete at one million moments shared, and grants from the National Park Foundation have already helped kids across the country get outdoors. Here are some moments that were made from your moment – the adventures of America’s Best Idea program grantees as they embarked on outdoor excursions this summer.


– The Assateague Adventure Academy at Assateague Island National Seashore, which encourages students to participate in recreational activities along the seashore, like kayaking and digging for clams


Assateague Adventures

Photos from the Adventure Academy


– The Native American Conservation Corps at Canyon de Chelly National Monument, who for the first time hired an all Native American crew, giving local youths valuable job experience–and a connection to the outdoors.


Canyon de Chelly

Crew at the Canyon de Chelly National Monument


– Women on the Water: Leaders of Tomorrow, a program developed for high school girls from cities and towns surround the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, which teaches the girls to become environmental stewards as they learn key kayaking, canoeing and rafting techniques


– Archaeological work in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, through which Cherokee youths and the local high school engage in a two-week dig supervised by professional archaeologists


Great Smokys Dig

Great Smoky Mountains Dig


– Voyageurs National Parks Teen Ambassadors Program, which brings kids from rural areas on outdoor adventures


Voyageurs Canoe


Voyageurs Boy Canoe


Many of the participants in these grantee programs shared positive feedback. For example, Ashley, 15, from Minnesota Voyageurs Teen Ambassador program, said, “I think it’s important for our national parks to have Teen Ambassadors because we can go out and experience the park and tell other young people about it to get them interested, too.  Considering that young people are the future caretakers of every aspect of the country, you want to get them to care more about our national parks so they will always be around.”


And Connor, 15, from Minnesota added, “This program is important so that generations to come will also understand how important and special our national parks are.”    


Damon, 14, from Cherokee, North Carolina, and a participant in the dig at Smoky Mountain National Park said, “I hope I can come back every year. And who knows, I might possibly become an archaeologist in the future.”


One participant in the Women on the Water: Leaders of Tomorrow program summed up the impact of her outdoor adventure: “Girls where I live don’t get the chance to do things like this.”


Thanks to you, kids across the country are able to access opportunities to explore the outdoors in a safe, engaging environment. Even though our mission is technically “complete,” we remain committed to inspiring the next generation to discover the outdoors. We hope you will continue to share your outdoor moments with us as we embark on our next 100 years with new initiatives.


Stay tuned for an upcoming blog post recounting some of our favorite moments from the past year. What has been your favorite moment of our 100th anniversary year?


Comments (13)

  1. retta | October 19, 2012 | 8:49 am

    how great!!! thanx for sharing something so good i had not known about.

  2. Kate | October 19, 2012 | 10:01 am

    Fabulous! L.L. Bean’s best idea. Thank you.

  3. Pattie | October 19, 2012 | 10:19 am

    How wonderful and generous was LLB’s $1 million dollar mission to the National Park Foundation as part of their celebration of their 100th year! Quality company, quality products, quality service!
    Most interesting to be informed of the many projects the Foundation supports for our country’s youth and the great outdoors! Thank you for sharing this information.

  4. Jan from Waldport, OR | October 19, 2012 | 11:17 am

    Thank you for sharing this !!! What a wonderful way to support your 100th Anniversary!!

  5. Doris | October 19, 2012 | 12:36 pm

    This was a great idea. So glad it worked well. The pictures are beautiful

  6. Jean | October 19, 2012 | 2:39 pm

    Thanks for encouraging kids everywhere to explore this beautiful nation of ours whether through kayaking, exploring, camping or any outdoor activity. I have always loved the outdoors and hope many of today’s generations and future generations will continue to do so. Thanks for your commitment to this!

  7. Ron | October 19, 2012 | 3:35 pm

    Hi – Thank you for letting me know such a thing was going on and I had a part in making it a success, I enjoy the shirts, shoes and pants I have gotten from you folks, and look forward to enjoying other things as well. Keep up the good work.

  8. Nancy from Woodland Hills, CA | October 19, 2012 | 5:28 pm

    Now that the park goal has been reached, please consider focusing on domestic critters who desperately need help all over the U.S. I will feel SO much better about purchasing from you if you work toward that end.

  9. Lynn Ziglar | October 23, 2012 | 12:18 pm

    Thank you for your support of such worth in educating young Americans. Our national parks are a treasure for all to learn and enjoy.
    Lynn Ziglar

  10. Jodi | October 23, 2012 | 1:27 pm

    I was not aware of this until today! Let’s do it again–one million MORE!!

  11. Wendy B. | October 25, 2012 | 4:33 pm

    1. Florida has National Parks!
    2. What about the EverGlades
    3. You are discriminating against one of the UNITED STATES!
    4. We use LL Beans Products and are amoung those that give you monies each year…what are we???
    I could see if you discriminated against Maine as it is the state that You are in.

    • Sara | L.L.Bean | October 26, 2012 | 2:09 pm

      Hi Wendy, We apologize that our fans in Florida are excluded from participating in the Get Out(fitted) Gear Giveaway. The exclusions are due to significant legal and registration requirements required by FL. We appreciate hearing your feedback and will take it into consideration for any future promotions.

  12. Diane Siniscalchi | October 25, 2012 | 8:50 pm

    Thank you, LL Bean! Giving our youth a chance to experience the great outdoors in all its glory is commendable!

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