Assateague Island, A Magical Place Spanning Two States

Assateague Island, A Magical Place Spanning Two States

Did someone say horses?
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Imagine. You are sitting on the beach but instead of being surrounded by people everywhere you look, you are instead surrounded by horses. For about ten dollars a day, you can park your car, drag all your beach materials up the sand, and settle down right on the beach. Wind blowing in your hair and the view of not only the ocean but horses as well.

This is Assateague Island. Located near Ocean City, Assateague Island is a long island that people can visit and even camp on. To camp though is almost impossible. Stated on the Assateague website; “Campsite reservations are available six months in advance. Be aware that nearly all reservations for weekends are filled the first day that they become available” Every time I have visited this is very true.

When I was younger, both my mom and I camped out and at four a.m. the horses had arrived and were raiding our food tent. It was a really cool experience as a six-year-old to see horses at four a.m. Despite the fact that you might not be able to camp though, it is a really awesome place to go for even the day. Although horses are fantastic to see at a beach, people often forget that they are wild horses. There is a pretty hefty fine to feed or touch them and it is recommended to stay several feet away.

Assateague Island has two beaches. The first is stateside, which is where people camp or pay ten dollars a day. The other beach, the federal side, is in my personal opinion much cooler. You can park your car on the beach and your dogs can come too. Of course, you have to pick up after your dogs but I know for a fact mine love going to the beach.

Kayaking is a great way to also get out there and look for more horses and other wildlife. So, the downside? The mosquitos, but what beach does not have them? Plus, Assateague Island is only a short drive away from Ocean City if you want to make the escape from the crowded beach to a more relaxing trip. Top this all off with the potential to see horses and you have the ultimate beach experience.

Cover Image Credit: Reginia Starnes

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Spending Time Outdoors Has So Many Benefits, Physically And Mentally

The recent study was published in the International Journal of Environmental Health Research emphasizing how spending time outdoors could reduce emotional stress and increase a person's overall happiness.

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Recently, I have come across a riveting article from Time stating that even spending as little as 20 minutes outside in a green area i.e. a park can instantly make you feel more cheerful. This article struck me a lot because we often rely on medications for effective treatment as opposed to anything natural. In my opinion, the best form of treatment lies in organic and pure substances. There can be nothing purer than spending time outdoors. In fact, we get most of our Vitamin D from the sun.

As a matter of fact, the recent study was published in the International Journal of Environmental Health Research emphasizing how spending time outdoors could reduce emotional stress and increase a person's overall happiness. This recent finding serves as a great reminder to people who prefer to stay indoors thoroughly engrossed in their own world. I agree that staying indoors has its own perks and sometimes you just need that "Me" time all by yourself. But, being outdoors radiates an abundance of positive energy that is highly encouraged to maintain the exuberant zest for life.

No matter how busy I'm with classes and work, I always jump at the prospect of going outside and spending that time feeling the scorching sunshine on my face. Sometimes, that's all we need! Along those lines, the article mentions how just being physically outside means a lot even if you are not doing anything. There is no need to always exercise while spending time outside in order to feel ecstatic about life.

Personally, I love the outdoors and it feels awesome learning the fact that there is a valid scientific reason as to why I start feeling happier than before. It is indeed remarkable how nature plays a huge role in regulating your moods and approach towards life. Hence, I would strongly encourage everyone to broaden their horizons more and plan on spending more time outside. Even if it is for 10 or 15 minutes. After all, being outdoors opens the door to a healthy lifestyle. Those few moments spent outside can make you feel more empowered than you ever were!

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Your Plastic Trash Is Turning Our Oceans' Marine Life Into Marine Death

We destroy life and pollute the oceans and skies, yet we have the audacity to call ourselves superior beings.

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More than one million marine animals die each year due to the overuse of plastic materials.

If you take a walk along the beach or swim in the ocean, you are bound to see some sort of trash. This trash does no good to those animals who are in the oceans. If we are doing something and we step on a piece of trash, we are able to pull it off, but the marine life cannot. The trash sticks with them, and sometimes it might come off.

We are killing the wildlife with the plastic and the trash.

Throughout the past few years, the marine life population has been declining. The ocean is a vital part of our food chain, feeding billions of people around the globe, and helps keep us alive. The world over fishes in the oceans, and empties trash into our oceans.

If you become aware of your daily living, plastic is used for everything. Plastic soda bottles, plastic chip bags, plastic grocery bags, plastic wrappers, and so much more plastic. Think about all the plastic straws we use, that plastic goes right now the esophagus for the marine life animals.

The amount of plastic in this world will take millions of years to actually break down. The plastic is not broken down fast enough.

But, until then, our oceans are getting all the plastic we are using.

All these plastics look appetizing to the marine life animals — they do not know it can harm them. For example, a bag floating looks appetizing to a turtle because it looks like it is a jellyfish floating up and down.

Humans average a total of 14 billion pounds of waste into the oceans per year. This number keeps reaching its peak every single year. Researchers have shown by the year 2040 the amount of plastic in the sea will be higher than the actual sum of marine life.

It is a proven fact that fish are not growing because they mistakenly eat the plastic more than their regular food. The waste usually comes from coastal areas, but some make it ways through inland waterways into the ocean. The plastic gets stuck into the marine life bodies along with toxic chemicals and bacterial absorbed by the material.

Plastic rings are a big thing — the six-pack of beer, soda and/or drinks.

Those plastic non-biodegradable rings are getting stuck around the sea animals, the sea animals are eating them as well. It is known that a company in Florida called Saltwater Brewery actually created edible six-pack rings. These rings are completely 100% biodegradable. It was a big investment for the Saltwater Brewery, but they state "it was completely worth it."

It baffles me how people can let these animals digest, get tangled and die because they can't reduce plastic usage and/or not throw the plastic into the oceans. More programs should be set up to pick up beach trash and cleaning the oceans. Even though every single piece of trash won't get out of the waters. A little help can make a world of difference to the marine life.

Stop littering your trash, become aware of the amount of plastic you actually use, pick up trash off the beach if you see it there and become educated on those marine life animals.

The ocean is calling for help, and you need to be their voice.

"For the wildest things on Earth, the future must depend on the conscience of mankind" — Dr. Carr



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