DNK Presents: Outdoor Adventures
Writer / Kara Reibel
When was the last time you did something for the first time? Danielle Wolter Nolan and Kate Nolan, founders of DNK Presents, ask this question to everyone they meet.
Danielle recalls the first time she experienced a backpacking adventure. Not knowing the difference between camping, hiking and backpacking, she agreed to a weekend in the woods. The only thing she did know with certainty is that she loved the outdoors.
“I was ready to try something new,” says Danielle. “What I didn’t realize was that this experience would become the catalyst for dedicating my life to living each day as a new adventure and discovering a whole new realm of opportunities to explore the wilderness I never knew existed right here in Indiana.”
To experience an outdoor adventure, the destination is closer than you may think. “Indiana has a lot to offer the outdoor enthusiast,” says Kate. “Backpacking, mountain biking and rock climbing can all be done over a weekend close to home.”
Brown County State Park is ranked in the top 33 trail systems in North America by Bike magazine. Brown County is just one of the many adventure destinations in Indiana.
Their company, DNK Presents, began organically. Kate and Danielle post their adventures to social media, and friends were intrigued. They were consistently asked what they were going to do next and if a friend could “tag along.”
“We were asked questions like ‘What should I take if I went on a backpacking trip?’ and we realized that people really wanted to try an adventure trip but were intimidated by not knowing what to pack,” shares Kate. “And most of the friends asking us these questions are outdoor fanatics.”
The opportunity and need for their company was obvious. In addition to adventurous individuals, corporate outings were booked. Day trips for a team of executives was catching fire. Sticksnleaves took their team on a day trip with Kate and Danielle as their guides.
“The day trip with DNK was awesome,” shares Kristen Cooper, VP of Corporate Development and Operations of Sticksnleaves. “The experience was challenging and fun. We laughed perhaps more than we paddled.”
Kate and Danielle found that their connection to nature and the outdoors has given them the confidence to handle diversity in their lives. “We feel better physically, emotionally and spiritually in nature,” says Kate. “We want to share an adventure with women who have never done something like a weekend backpacking trip, so we’ve created an adventure contest for women to experience a new challenge.”
Nominations for this contest are being accepted until the end of February. The weekend trip will be filmed as a documentary to share with and inspire others to push themselves into new and challenging situations.
“We wish to show empowering women in Indiana living life adventurously,” shares Danielle. “We are filming a documentary of this experience, so we can show everyone that women belong in the wild. We are strong, confident and capable. This will help illustrate why trying something for the first time is so important.”
Kate adds, “We want to get people doing something fun that’s out of their comfort zone. People have different levels of confidence in many areas, but placing someone outside in a completely different environment gives them confidence and empowers them in ways that cannot be accomplished indoors. The real sense of being a ‘risk taker’ is redefined.”
Nominations may be submitted on their website, dnkpresents.com, by the end of February. The adventure weekend is in mid-May.