On August 11 at 5 p.m., the Local Histories and Stories Series will feature Sue Kiesel and her presentation on The Healing Power of Photographing Outdoors in the Adirondacks at the Old Forge Library.
Sue is a lifelong lover of the Adirondacks, having been here her entire life as a seasonal resident. She began her current passion for photography 15 years ago and is a true addict! She enjoys, more than anything, sharing her captures. It is her greatest desire to sway others to appreciate the healing quality that nature offers all of us. If others catch the bug, perhaps they too will learn how fragile mother nature is and promote protecting it for the many generations to come.
Although the Grimm Brothers’ tale of Hansel and Gretel surviving alone in the woods after being abandoned by their parents is based on a grim reality – the famine of 1315-1317 – there are compelling reasons to take kids into a forest today. As long as they are kept out of the clutches of evil witches, and are brought to their respective homes right afterward. Research on the health benefits of being in a forest environment is so compelling that urban daycares in Finland “built” forests for kids to use.
As part of a study on childhood immune systems and overall health, these ersatz woodlands were made by spreading topsoil over play yards, which had been either gravel or concrete. The soil was then planted with native trees, shrubs, and flowers. For obvious reasons, gingerbread houses were not included in the forest plots. The idea that immersion in nature helps us feel good is old news, of course. Patients in rooms with tree views have shorter hospital stays and report less pain as compared to those who do not have access to a natural vista.
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