During the last week of May, we experienced something that most organizations don’t have the opportunity to do, which is working an entire week completely outside. Here at Nine13sports, we believe it’s important for our staff and interns to be exposed to learning in schools and at the office, in addition to outside of these parameters. There are several benefits to experiencing the beauty that Indiana offers by working outside, such as nature’s healing powers of the body, mind, and soul. Other benefits include elevated Vitamin D intake, a break from technology, and increased quality of sleep, as studies show that natural sunlight helps set the body’s internal clock that tells us when to eat and sleep.

First, on Tuesday, May 26th, we volunteered at Nora Elementary School on the north side of Indianapolis during their school field day. Nora, which is in Washington Township, was one of the schools that we ran programming at this past school semester. To our surprise, the P.E. teacher at Nora, Marcus Dalton, stated the school hadn’t had a field day in several years. Mr. Dalton, who just finished up his first year at the school, reached out to us about volunteering. Naturally, we accepted his offer and genuinely enjoyed all aspects of the field day, from the parachute to the dunk tank. There’s no better joy than watching elementary school students delightfully hurl tennis falls to witness their teacher get soaked in water over and over again.

On Wednesday, May 27th and Friday, May 29th, our staff and interns participated in an ActiveIndy Bike Tour with Indianapolis Public Schools Gambold Prep and the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department. During these bike tours, we biked the Indianapolis Downtown cultural trail, districts, and neighborhoods with a select number of high school students each day. Beyond question, it offered a tremendous chance for our staff, as well as the students, to develop a greater cultural sensitivity and provided direct, authentic exposure to Indianapolis in order to nurture a better understanding and appreciation for our culture. Furthermore, it fostered a great sense of community, friendships were developed along the way, and it challenged all of us mentally and physically.

The students learning about Bobby Kennedy’s famous speech at the spot the night MLK was assassinated. This is an amazing memorial at Kennedy-King Park.

Needless to say, we were honored to experience all of the elements that Week Without Walls offered us. Nostalgia swarmed over us as we volunteered at Nora’s Field Day and threw water balloons upon our Nine13sports team. Pride and admiration ran through us as we witnessed the beauty of Indianapolis and the rich history that’s behind it. We’re not kidding when we say that we really do have the best job in the world!