After a fire that destroyed the College’s original building in Loretto, the Sisters of Mercy went about five miles south; laying claim to 193 beautiful acres in Cresson, Pa. Coming to the area from Pittsburgh, those sisters must have been awed by the natural beauty throughout the southern Allegheny Mountains. Mount Aloysius College will celebrate that beauty and the opportunities for exploration, safe fun and four full seasons of recreation with their first ever Outdoor Expo. The event will take place on Thursday, February 22nd and fun activities will take place all day long. The public is invited to attend sessions from noon to 7:00 p.m. Most events, displays and presentation will be held in the Bertschi Center and Technology Commons. There is no charge to come and celebrate our regional outdoor heritage with the Mount Aloysius College Outdoor Expo. Ms. Christina Koren, executive director of mission integration and community outreach at Mount Aloysius has partnered with the Cambria County Visitor’s Bureau which offers the very best perspective on the value of our regional outdoor recreational offerings. “We have such rich natural resources,” observed Ms. Koren. “We want everyone to learn more about them, especially from the professionals who have given their careers to promoting the expansive natural beauty of our area.” Koren, a regional native, noted that the Outdoor Expo offers something for all ages. “Everyone — students to retirees — all benefit from the beauty of our region,” she said. “Students learn about wilderness leadership, and people from all walks and stages of life can thrive here amidst the beauty of our rolling hills, peaks, parks and waterways. Whether your interest is rock–climbing, astronomy, cross country or downhill skiing, orienteering, biking, walking, running, hiking, scuba-diving, sky-diving or even spelunking,” added Koren. “You can do it all right here.” Safety and Survival First is a session featuring survivalist Mr. Erik Kulick. Mr. Kulich, a former Navy Seal, will discuss wilderness survival, demonstrating technical skills that get you back home from a wilderness emergency. Kulick has instructed national outdoor programs and has spent the last 15 years focusing on his training on wilderness survival. The Pittsburgh native has earned his MBA and a Juris Doctorate. The Outdoor Expo will feature demos and presentations throughout the day, courtesy of nearly a score of local vendors and clubs focused on outdoor recreation. Presenters include officials from Prince Gallitzin State Park discussing animal tracking, and representatives from the Portage Railroad National Park Service, discussing the history and natural beauty of the area. Levity Brewing will discuss the science of outdoor living and the crafting of boutique brews. Attendees will hear and see demonstrations from local biking and hiking trails, sports equipment vendors plus much more! Koren noted that Mount Aloysius College is one of 17 US Mercy –affiliated colleges and universities. “This Outdoor Expo has a special meaning to the College and to our area,” added Ms. Koren. “Issues surrounding conservation and respect for the Earth are Mercy Critical Concerns,” she said. “This Outdoor Expo is an opportunity to highlight and celebrate this beautiful part of America. Just minutes off of any major highway or byway visitors can find breathtaking vistas and so much to do. Our goal is to educate and celebrate that which many of us take for granted. This is a great time of year and so we invite our neighbors and friends— old and new — to visit us on Thursday, February 22nd and plan to stay awhile. For more information on the Mount Aloysius College Outdoor Expo contact the College’s Office of Missions Integration and Community Outreach at (814) 886-6407 ( tel:(814)%20886-6407 ).