Browsing Articles Written by

Ellen Matis

I'm Ellen, the writer behind Focus on Local. I'm a double business owner, community connector and adventure lover.

Hiking / Published / Travel By On July 8, 2019

Hike, paddle, relax, repeat–in Cook Forest State Park

This post originally appeared in Recreation News. Step into Cook Forest — in the Pennsylvania Great Outdoors region —to relax, unwind, disconnect from the world and enjoy nature. Cook Forest is one of those special places — there’s few left — where you can always hear the mountain breeze, the sound of small animals scurrying around in their natural habitat…

Hiking / Published / Travel By On July 6, 2019

The forest is calling: Hiking and mountain biking opportunities in ANF

This post originally appeared in Recreation News. Thinking about leaving the city behind and getting back to nature? In the Allegheny National Forest of Pennsylvania, you can do just that. The Allegheny National Forest is home to 13 hiking trails, covering more than 200 miles. So which ones should you hike during your visit? Tuna Valley Trail System According to…

Hiking / Published By On March 1, 2019

First hike of 2019

This post originally appeared in Recreation News. It took some convincing, but I finally got out for our first hike of 2019. As most of our Mid-Atlantic readers know, it’s been a more brutal winter than usual — especially in my home base of Pennsylvania. Getting outdoors gets to be more difficult, and motivation to get moving even harder. But…

Hiking / Published / Travel By On February 4, 2019

Five things to do during a romantic getaway in Clarion, Pa.

During the month of celebrating love, there’s nothing more romantic than cozying up in a cabin in a remote location — and the Pennsylvania Great Outdoors region is full of them. The Pennsylvania Great Outdoors region consists of five counties in the northwest and central part of the state: Forest, Elk, Cameron, Jefferson and Clarion. It’s also home to outdoor…

Business / Lifestyle / Reading By On January 31, 2019

Making sure to observe the ‘One-Minute Rule”

I’ve been an avid listener and reader of Gretchen Rubin, of “The Happiness Project” podcast for many years. I’m a sucker for anything that’s about making life a little better by taking some easy steps. One of my favorite rules that I’ve been following since listening to is the “One-Minute Rule.” Gretchen says that, when it comes to decluttering, you…

Personal By On January 27, 2019

Life Disconnected in 2019

It’s funny, about this time last year (closer to New Year’s Day), I wrote that I was going to write more on Life Disconnected. And guess how many times I wrote on Life Disconnected? Fewer than 10. This blog means a lot to me. It’s a place where I get to write freely, without the constraints that writing for a…