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Meet the bluemovement road trip crew!

Meet the bluemovement road trip crew!

May 24, 2018

Meet The Bluemovement
Road Trip Crew!

It’s almost here! The Bluemovement Road Trip officially kicks off June 1st in Richmond, VA, but in the meantime we wanted to share a bit about our courageous crew. Meet Kelly and Jeff: husband and wife and parents to rambunctious goldendoodle Chance. They’ll be living out of a van this summer to spread the #bluemovement and clean some of the nation’s most vital waterways. We chatted with them to find out what inspires them to live sustainably, their van life must-haves, and why Chance isn’t a good dancer.

Current Occupation (when you’re not cruising around the country)?

Jeff: Product Manager for a technology company.

Kelly: This month, I graduated with a master’s in public health and intend to work in this field after the road trip, preferably focusing on food systems and how they affect the environment and the public’s health.

When did you first become interested in sustainability?

Jeff: It initially started when I developed a passion for minimalism as I was moving between a bunch of different apartments and cities the first few years after I graduated from college. By paring down my stuff and ensuring I wasn’t acquiring unnecessary things, I was able to focus on quality and quantity.

Kelly: Living abroad in Sweden exposed me to many of the ways that other countries approach sustainability, whether through social or national commitments, such as construction or recycling practices or the daily purchasing decisions an individual makes, such as how large their home is or what products they use. That experience inspired me to reflect on my own habits, specifically what I eat, wear, and buy, and how purchasing habits do or do not incentivize sustainable manufacturing methods and supply chains.

What does #bluemovement mean to you?

Jeff: It’s a way of life or state of mind where my decisions are very intentional and always consider the environmental impact or consequences of each actions.

Kelly: #Bluemovement emphasizes the individual behavioral change that needs to occur to protect the Earth’s water sources, both big and small.

What drew you to wanting to spend your summer in a van cleaning your way across the country?

Jeff: Oh gosh for so many reasons! The biggest one though was the opportunity to have such a tangible positive impact on the environment where that was the primary focus of my day rather than having to settle for just volunteering an hour or two on the weekends or donating money to conservation efforts.

Kelly: The combination of what we’re doing and where. I’m really passionate about taking care of the Earth, especially the water, air and soil, as these factors are so intimately linked to human health. When you take care of the Earth, she’ll take care of you. However, it’s so easy to become disconnected from this link and forget how much we rely on these natural resources. I’m excited to learn more about how water quality issues are facing people across the country, and hope our journey can amplify both the challenges that American communities are facing and how they hope to solve them.

What stop on the trip are you most eager to see?

Jeff: Big Sky, MT. Everyone I’ve spoken with says that the pictures don’t do it justice and I’ve only ever seen pictures so I want to see the real thing!

Kelly: Ruidoso, NM. This is one of the few cities on our trip that I’d previously never heard of and New Mexico has been on my travel bucket list for a while.

Favorite way to spend time outdoors?

Jeff: Trail running with Chance.
Kelly: Hanging out around a campfire, definitely with s’mores.

Can you tell us a bit about Chance? Likes, dislikes, his role on the road?

Jeff: Chance loves squirrels, people and dogs. Surprisingly, he doesn’t like it when people dance though.

Kelly: He loves squirrels and cannot “hear” my voice when on the hunt for a squirrel. Outside of his fascination with small animals, he enjoys running, playing with other pups, and adores people (he’s a certified therapy dog). Wherever we go with Chance, we make friends. Therefore, his primary role on the road trip is to welcome and love-on volunteers, as well as encourage folks we meet along the way to come chat with us because he’s pretty irresistible.

Must-have road trip essentials?

Jeff: NPR, non-fiction books, a hoodie or pullover like this one, and an offline map app.

Kelly: Perfect Bars, Spotify Premium, my water bottle, and a baseball cap.

What are you most excited for on the road trip and why?

Jeff: The intersection of the three focuses of the trip being the water, community, and individual. Simultaneously being in and around waterways that are critical for our survival while seeing active community organizations contribute to the health of ecosystems and then witnessing the individuals passions of people is something that I’m extremely excited for.

Kelly: Two thoughts come to mind: the people and the landscape. I love meeting new people and am really excited to have conversations with volunteers. In addition, Chance and I both share a passion for staring out the window and soaking up the landscape (or the smells!) while we’re on the road.

Be sure to come say hello to Kelly, Jeff, and Chance when they roll through your town this summer! Check out their full road trip route here.

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