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Latina bloggers explore the Latino connection with national parks

LatinaLista — The national trend of ‘getting back to nature’ doesn’t just mean eating organic foods or simplifying our lives. It also means connecting with nature. Some will say they do that by going to a neighborhood park, running, or tending home gardens, but while all are examples of being outside there’s only one way to do it that allows for total immersion with nature — visit a national park.

National parks are the one places where people really can get back to nature — breathing better quality air, hiking along trails —nature’s roadways, seeing animals without the confines of a cage, hearing nature and learning about Latino history.

National parks not only preserve the nation’s pristine examples of Mother Nature’s finest works but they are also places preserving the contributions Latinos have been making to the United States before it became the Stars and Stripes. The unfortunate thing is because not many Latino families think of national parks as places to vacation or visit, most of us never learn about the early history of Latinos.


But this summer is different. Some popular Latina bloggers accepted a challenge from the The American Latino Heritage Fund (ALHF) of the National Park Foundation to take their families and visit a specific park and let the rest of the Latino community tag along with them — virtually, of course.

The American Latino Expedition kicked off August 11 with blogger Yvonne Condes of With her family beside her, Condes’ assignment was to visit Mesa Verde National Park. Each day, she has been blogging and posting pictures of the amazing cliff dwellings in the park and the experience that really impressed her pre-teen boys — climbing a 32-foot ladder to get to the cliff dwelling.

Latina bloggers who won the opportunity to be part of the American Latino Expedition
Latina bloggers who won the opportunity to be part of the American Latino Expedition

“Three stories sounds like a lot, but once we were climbing the ladder, it wasn’t intimidating at all (as long as we didn’t look down). My boys who are almost 8 and 9 had no problem at all getting up the ladder and have been talking about it ever since,” Yvonne Condes blogs.

The Condes’ family adventure ends today (Aug. 14) but the American Latino Expedition goes on till the end of the month. The other bloggers taking readers on virtual state park tours are:

Kathy Cane-Murillo of Phoenix, founder of; Monique Frausto of Los Angeles, CA, creator of; Nicole Presley of Los Angeles, creator of Presley’s Pantry and Denise Cortes of Riverside, CA, founder of who will explore the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area from August 18-20.

Finishing up the tours with a visit to the Olympic National Park in Washington (state) from August 25-28 will be sisters and co-founders of, Chelle Roberts of Chicago and Crystal Roberts of Orlando; Ana Serafin-Gil of Chicago, founder of and Carol Cain of South Orange, NJ, founder of

While each ‘blogger explorer’ will be blogging about her experience, the conversation will be ongoing under the hashtag #ALEx13 on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

(Featured Photo Credit: Yvonne Condes)

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