IMMERSION TRAVEL USA:
The Best & Most Meaningful Volunteering,
Living & Learning Excursions
By Sheryl Kayne
The Countryman Press
A division of W.W. Norton & Company, Inc.
Pub Date: September 2008
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Immersion travel is for everyone at all ages and stages of life.
It means taking an active part in where one visits in order to
learn about the culture, traditions, and characteristics of each
This book will absolutely change lives and the way people think
about travel in the U.S. The goal is to not just visit, but to
get involved. Designed to be a resource and idea book, this
guide provides practical information about immersion travel,
special considerations and costs, and how to plan and take
vacations, sabbaticals, side trips, and more.
Each chapter is filled with candid stories from travelers who
have immersed themselves in one of the more than 200 activities
chronicled in the book. Readers will find out about:
Helping: Volunteer in Great
Locations with Phenomenal People
Build affordable housing while biking across the nation,
Bike & Build, Philadelphia, Penn.
Tutor, mentor, and be a role model for inner city youth,
City Year, Boston, Mass.
Learning: Education, Self-Help, and Alternative
Experience life as it was in a covered wagon tour on the
Oregon Trail, Bayard, Nebr.
Master quilting, fiddling, blacksmithing, and other
traditional crafts, John C. Campbell Folk School, Brasstown,
Working: Explore Internships and Short- and
Longer-Term Job Opportunities
Trade farming, gardening, maintenance, or housekeeping for
room and board, Wellspring, West Bend, Wis.
Build and maintain trails in White Mountain National Forest,
American Hiking Society, Silver Spring, Md.
Immersion Travel for Animal Lovers, Caretakers, and
Document Atlantic bottlenose dolphins along the East Coast,
Dolphins Plus, Key Largo, Fla.
Observe millions of bats, Selman Bat Watch, Oklahoma City,
Playing: Enjoy the Great Outdoors, Sports, and the
Be totally immersed in an underwater vacation, Jules'
Undersea Lodge, Key Largo, Fla.
Go whitewater rafting through Westwater Canyon, Utah,
Adventure Bound River Expeditions, Grand Junction, Colo.
The book also includes inspirational
first-person narratives, like Betsy’s Story, a 45-year-old
elementary school teacher who went on a spring break
horse-packing trip and enjoyed it so much that she sold her
home in Virginia, gave up her teaching job, and applied for
the adventure job of her dreams, packing horses and cooking
on Allen’s Diamond Four Ranch in the Wind River Mountain
Range. They specialize in horses, fly-fishing, pack trips,
and elk hunting in the Shoshone National Forest. Throughout
IMMERSION TRAVEL USA you will find personal stories about
travelers who discovered their passions through different
experiences. Kathleen fell in love with dogsledding on a
weekend trip and now has 37 Alaskan huskies and teaches
people how to mush in Minnesota. Chuck and Dona were so
thrilled after attending the National Storytelling Festival
that they sold their home in New Jersey and opened a bed &
breakfast in Jonesborough, Tennessee. Immersion travel can
definitely change your life. Don’t just visit, get involved.
Sheryl Kayne is a writer, adventurer, performer, and
educator. Growing up the daughter of a traveling salesman, she
loved nothing better than jumping into the family car for a day
on the road with her father. In the seventh grade, after staring
at the map during a particularly boring geography class, she
excitedly blurted, “Look at that! I can drive to Alaska!” And
she did, many years later, to take a summer job researching,
writing, and performing living history vignettes about women in
the Gold Rush.
“My lifelong dream has been to not just visit, but to get
involved everywhere I go. People often talked about Immersion
Travel into Europe – immersing themselves into the culture,
people, place and language for a total learning experience,”
says Kayne, “and I applied that concept to my new book,
IMMERSION TRAVEL USA.”
She is also the author of two published children’s books, QUEEN
OF THE KISSES and QUEEN OF THE KiSSES MEETS SAM UNDER A SOUP
POT, creator of five newspaper and magazine columns, and
contributor to national and international publications
including: The New York Times, Working Mother, Shape, Parents,
American Profile, The Writer, Chicago Suburban Woman,
Connecticut Magazine, Writer’s Digest, Hadassah, and many
She holds a Bachelor of Arts in education from the University of
Bridgeport and Master of Science degree in school psychology
from Fairfield University, and is an Adjunct Professor at Sacred
Heart University in Fairfield, CT teaching Public Speaking and
Oral Interpretation of Literature. Her feature articles are
included in book collections: American Profile’s 50 Best
Hometown Heroes and Hadassah Magazine’s Jewish Parenting.
Kayne has extensive on-camera and radio media training and
experience in standup comedy on the New York circuit. She is
comfortable with large and small groups, performing her
children’s books for schools and festivals, delivering living
history vignettes, leading nature trail walks in Alaska, and
facilitating workshops on immersion travel. She has appeared on
MTV, CNN, All Talk Network, ABC Weekend Evening News, Lifetime
Television Network’s New Attitudes, and NPR.
She has traveled to Great Britain, Europe, the Caribbean,
Bermuda, the Middle East, South America, Canada, and 46 states
in the U.S., and has worked in many of the places she has
visited in a variety of positions. The recipient of numerous
awards for writing, most recently she was the
writer-in-residence at the Everglades National Park, Homestead,
FL, and a writing fellow at the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation in
Taos, NM. Her next book with Countryman Press, VOLUNTEER
VACATIONS ACROSS AMERICA, is due out June, 2009.