Since she launched OutdoorAfro.com two years ago, Rue Mapp has been working tirelessly to reconnect African Americans with the Great Outdoors.
According to a press release, her website is filled with stories, photos, videos and event listings that enable African Americans to network with each other for hiking, bicycling, camping, river rafting, rock climbing and other activities in nature.
Mapp will take her efforts a step further Aug. 12-14 when she travels to the foothills of the Sierra Nevada with her nephew and three children for a three-day camping trip in a teardrop RV at Ponderosa Resort in Lotus.
Mapp said that camping and RVing are outdoor activities that, for a variety of reasons, haven’t yet taken hold in the African American community. She is hoping to change that ¬ and let people know what they’re missing.
“I’m not an outsider talking about these things because I’ve always enjoyed camping,” she said. “But I do want to spread the message that these kinds of activities are possible for African Americans in California and across the country.”
To hammer home her point, Mapp plans to do live tweeting, blogging and videotaping of her trip so that the roughly 7,000 African American members of OutdoorAfro.com can follow her and share in her experiences.
The press release stated that Camp-California and Ponderosa Resort (RVonTheGo.com) are co-sponsoring her trip along with Auburn-based American River Sales and Rentals, which is supplying the teardrop trailer for Mapp’s use.
“This will be a deliberate application of social media to talk about a real experience and how the camping and RV industries can use social media to get African Americans and others involved in the various outdoor opportunities that are available,” Mapp said.
Ponderosa Resort, for its part, is eager to gain exposure among a market demographic that knows little about the opportunities available to them.
“Rue’s trip will help expose us to a new demographic, for sure,” said Dominic Pugliese, manager of Ponderosa Resort, a scenic, 135-site campground with over 2,000 feet of frontage along the American River. Many of the park’s campsites and rental cabins are located on the river.