Anyone who has traversed the cobbled roads of outlet-central Freeport, Maine, has undoubtedly witnessed the gargantuan boot perched out front of L.L. Bean’s flagship locale. To celebrate the company’s 100th anniversary this year, the gear makers decided to honor not only the boot but the notion of keeping outdoor lovers outside and preserving natural spaces for future generations.
Through a new campaign called Million Moments Mission—and a pretty awesome Bootmobile (above)—Bean has pledged to donate a buck to the National Park Foundation for each story us nature lovers post. “This year, share your outdoor moments with us,” the campaign page touts. “Post a family photo, tweet from a mountaintop, or simply ‘like’ us on Facebook. No experience is too small to be counted.”
The concept is pretty cool, mainly for its simplicity. You tell Bean about your outdoor adventures, the company donates a dollar to a cause you likely care about. To sweeten the deal, each day of 2012, L.L. Bean is also giving away gear to one lucky person who has posted a story: “If your entry is selected, our experts will then create a custom prize package based on your requests. One winner per day will receive a gear package worth up to $500, 366 winners total.” (Here are the official rules, if you’re interested.)
To get the word out, Bean is driving its Bootmobile—which would apparently fit a giant almost 150 feet tall—across the country to give away gear and host events. (Here’s a fun video showing how the vehicle was actually made.) “The idea here is not to put a boot on a truck,” says Zachary Weikart of Echo Artz, which created the auto. “It’s putting a truck inside of a boot…The truck is really the vehicle—no play on words—to get us there.”
Bean says it will donate up to $1 million to the National Park Foundation. With any luck, your stories of fabulous outdoor adventures of the past will help ensure many more for generations to come.