Fryeburg Academy Outing Club gets a $500 grant

The Fryeburg Academy Outing Club recently hiked Pleasant Mountain in Denmark, Maine. Club members include (from left) Tuna Tuncer, Jiwon Choi, Jae Young Kim, Zoe Jung, Alanis Barrett, Grace Liu and Andrii Obertas. (COURTESY PHOTO)

FRYEBURG, Maine — Each year, Teens to Trails, a non-profit based in Brunswick, Maine, offers high school outing clubs across the state the chance to win a $500 grant to use toward trip planning, gear, safety skills and training for club leaders.

Dylan Harry, a science teacher and director of Outdoor Learning and Research at Fryeburg Academy, applied for the grant in January in hopes of purchasing gear for future overnight excursions, and hiking boots for local climbs. Earlier this month, the Fryeburg Academy Outing Club learned they were one of six Maine high schools to be awarded a grant.

Fryeburg students typically raise money for their outing club by hosting the Mountainfilm Festival, a documentary film festival that highlights stories about environmental, cultural, climbing, political and social justice issues. In a typical year, the festival sells out, but the event was canceled in 2020 due to COVID-19.

With challenges like this, winning a $500 grant is especially meaningful. Regarding the award, Harry said, “Fryeburg Academy is so grateful for the support of Teens to Trails Grants to Clubs program. Our expanding gear inventory has directly translated into better quality trips for more students, and more can be done in challenging weather and conditions.”

Through the support of L.L.Bean, Teens to Trails is able to offer financial grants to help strengthen outing clubs throughout the state.

Executive Director Alicia Heyburn is thankful for the ongoing support of Teens to Trails donors. Their generosity propels the organization’s mission to create life changing outdoor experiences for high school students.

“Our Grants-to-Clubs program offers a chance for us to distribute our donor’s support directly to schools,” she said. “We are so pleased to help the Fryeburg Academy Outing Club and the great experiences Dylan Harry offers his students.”

Teens To Trails is a 501(c)(3) charitable nonprofit dedicated to connecting high school students to life-changing outdoor experiences with a vision that all teens have the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors, together. Since 2008, Teens To Trails has awarded over $73,000 in grants to Outing Clubs through the Grants-To-Clubs Program.

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