The Benefits of Experience

Does this sound familiar? You gift your child a toy for a holiday or their birthday. The toy is a hit! Your child plays with it non-stop for a week. And then, it ends up in the toy box collecting dust. If you’re lucky you can eventually sneak it out to donate it or covertly sell it on Facebook marketplace.

Sure, it’s awesome to watch your child open the toy they’ve been coveting and see the joy on their face. But while the joy and the toys don’t last forever, experiences do. Research out of the University of Toronto, published in the Journal of Consumer Research, states that gift-givers seeking to foster closer relationships with their recipients are likely to achieve greater success by giving experiential gifts, rather than material gifts.  “The reason experiential gifts are more socially connecting is that they tend to be more emotionally evocative,” explains lead researcher Cindy Chan, in a press release adding, “An experiential gift elicits a strong emotional response when a recipient consumes it.”

So, let’s make some memories with these experience gifts perfect for outdoor families.

Experience Gifts For Outdoor Families

1. Memberships

A membership to a local zoo, nature center or a National or State Park are gifts that keep on giving. Memberships are typically sold for an entire year, giving everyone a chance to visit multiple times.

2. Hike it Baby Membership

Family-friendly group led hikes, exclusive partner discounts, educational resources, community support, a digital subscription to Backpacker magazine, and more! Join Hike it Baby and join a community of like-minded parents and caregivers that are raising a generation to love the outdoors. Your membership fee is a tax-deductible donation helping to get more families with young children on trail to experience the benefits of nature.

3. Campground Gift Certificate or Season Pass

Does your family love to camp or do you know a family of campers? Give them a leg-up for their next camping trip by covering the cost of their campsite. Campground gift certificates are available for a number of state and local parks, KOA campgrounds, and independent campgrounds. Contact your favorite local camping spots to find out what gift options they have available.

4. Outdoor Themed Classes & Camps

Find a hands-on, nature-based learning experience to gift your nature lover, from an hour-long class to a seasonal camp. Check with your local nature center, community gardens, state and local park or zoo for available options. Most offer everything from guided wildlife hikes to nature-based arts and crafts courses.

5. Adventure Outing

Try Ziplining, kayak or canoe rental, high ropes course, rafting, paddleboarding or even a local 5K run/walk. Whether it’s to try something new or returning to a much-loved hobby, these are great options to amp up the family fun!

Experience the benefits of outdoor fun with community. Join Hike it Baby today!

About Hike it Baby

Hike it Baby is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to getting families outdoors and on trails across the U.S. and internationally, supporting, educating and inspiring families through their more than 300 communities across North America. Since its grassroots inception in 2013 in Portland, Oregon, Hike it Baby is now a growing community of 270,000 families and 500 volunteer branch ambassadors hosting more than 1,600 hikes per month. More information, as well as daily hike schedules, can be found at, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, and Instagram.

Photos courtesy of Stephanie Jacobson, Amy Diebold


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