Imagine giving up everything you own to only a few bags of necessities. Imagine traveling over 6,500 miles around the United States for over two years. Imagine finding hundreds of neo-villages practicing sustainability in food, work, and communication. Then imagine doing this on bicycles...and filming it.
Meet Ryan and Mandy.
Their story goes like this: Years ago, the two found themselves lacking zest and fulfillment for the everyday humdrum. Wondering what it is they truly wanted out of life, drastic changes were made. Both managed to minimize to only what would fit on their bikes, said good-bye to their old lives and hello to the open road.
Along the way they met thousands of people following their bliss, interviewed many iconic sustainability figures like Bill McKibben, Richard Heinburg and Diana Leafe Christian, and experienced an adventure that would change their lives forever.
In early 2010, Derek Alan Rowe (Director at Doctrine Creative in Orlando, FL) connected with the couple and after a couple brainstorms they decided to partner together and make this journey caught on film...a reality, called "Within Reach: A Journey to find sustainable community"
But how did they do it?
Two bicycles, 1 veggie-powered car and a camera. Derek drove the veggie car following behind Ryan and Mandy on their bikes. With Derek in the car was his crew: Gatlin (his younger brother to hold the wheel when he was filming, and help pump veggie oil) and Vanessa (his life-partner and blogger to document the journey)
They adopted a nomadic lifestyle, staying in a different State Park everyday when we weren’t staying with the communities, and we sought to maintain a healthy diet even with such uncertain circumstances.
"Our trip was an adventure that I will never forget. For me, the month and a half we spent on the road was one of the most life-changing experiences I’ve ever had. We were able to witness first-hand, humans co-creating a new reality; harmoniously building a better world for tomorrow. It wasn’t until this trip that I realized how important building community really is." (Vanessa, www.greenandfreeblog.com)
Now that the journey is over, it was time to start putting Within Reach’s final edit together. But they needed help. They started a fundraising campaign over at Kickstarter, an amazing platform for funding creative projects. The goal was $25,000 in 30 days. AND THEY DID IT! Mindblowing! What’s super rad about Kickstarter is that when you pledge you also get rewarded. The rewards range from getting a DVD copy of Within Reach to a personal consultation with Ryan and Mandy about living in sustainable community.
This website is the future. If they can do it anyone can.
Here are a couple links to articles written about us:
Mag in Boulder, CO: http://www.elephantjournal.com/2010/12/will-a-sustainable-america-ever-be-within-reach/
International Website about activism: http://www.fouryearsgo.org/2010/12/03/feature/what-does-truly-sustainable-living-look-like/
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*UPDATE: Within Reach Countdown: Only 6 days until our deadline...Last night I sent out a facebook update: "$41 to push us over $15,000, who's up for the challenge." And someone responded with $50...so it works, lets all keep spreading the word...Just think: who haven't you talked to about this project yet? http://kck.st/blPvvR