Outside of my work life I enjoy a variety of different activities. I participate in various charity endeavors and am an organizer for four activity groups, where I organized over 180 events in 2011. Volunteering to do things you love with others is always a lot more fun!
Chapel Hill – Durham Hikers
I founded the Chapel Hill – Durham Hiking Group which is designed to provide local hiking and outdoor opportunities for the western triangle. We average about 3-4 events a week and do everything from hiking to kayaking to tubing trips to tours of local exotic animal rescues. I have been organizing events and leading hikes for 3 years and it is one of my favorite outdoor activities. The group has grown to almost 500 members and in 2011 I led over 110 hikes and logged over 370 miles!
Find out more about the Chapel Hill – Durham Hikers
The Triangle Geeks is an activity group that caters to my geekier side. I organize a variety of different types of events including new release movie screenings, game nights, pub trivia and workshops on different “geeky” subjects. It is a great way for almost 500 members to socialize with people who like to do similar activities.
Find out more about the Triangle Geeks
Triangle Games and Potluck Group
The Triangle Games and Potluck Group meets twice a month with a themed potluck dinner. Everyone brings a dish that goes with the theme to share. After that we all enjoy playing a variety of games from cards to social party games to boards games and European strategy games. I am pretty sure my neighbors spend Saturday nights wondering what could be so funny over at my house!
Find out more about the Triangle Games and Potluck Group
Triangle Indie Film Group
I am passionate about foreign and classic films, so I organize events for the Triangle Indie Film Group so that I can enjoy these films with others. I have hosted dozens of events and have seen some great films in the process.
Find out more about the Triangle Indie Film Group
In my spare time I also try to find ways to use my skills to help charitable endeavors. For example, last year I made and donated knitted hats to the Pediatric Oncology Nurses Association to give to patients at Duke and UNC hospitals (and they turned out awfully cute!)
Last year I also learned the art of cutting 75% off your grocery bills through the use of coupons, which may sound a little dumb until you know I saved thousands of dollars last year. I have taught free classes to others on how to use the techniques and use these skills to also benefit local charities, including donating hundreds of dollars in supplies to animal shelters and the Durham Rescue Mission.
One of my bigger projects is collecting and mailing coupons to military families stationed overseas. Military families struggle to make ends meet and they can use coupons up to 6 months expired in the PX and the Commissary on base. Last year alone I collected and mailed over $13,000 in coupons to an Air Force base in Turkey. For more information about adopting an overseas military base, visit their website: http://ocpnet.org/