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Presenter Jeff Alt


Presenter Name: Jeff Alt

Presentation Title: Hike the Appalachian Trail with Jeff Alt, author of A Walk for Sunshine

Presentation Description: Alt takes you along every step of his 2,160-mile Appalachian Trail adventure filled with hilarious and engaging tales, stunning photography, and music based on his new 4th edition of A Walk for Sunshine.  You will hear humorous, frightening, and inspirational stories including: bears, bugs, blisters, interesting characters, skunk bedmates, mice, and hilarious food cravings.  Alt shares hilarious food cravings from the trail—the tree branch looked like New York Strip, the dirt kicked in with the snow, looked like Oreo cookie ice-cream.  You will learn how he ate a large pizza as a snack, a dozen donuts before breakfast; and still lost 30 pounds from burning 4-6,000 calories a day on the trail—the equivalence of running two marathons a day. Alt made his original trek to raise money for Sunshine, the home where his brother with cerebral palsy lives.  Alt’s journey inspired an annual event that has raised $450,000 to support over 1,000 individuals supported by Sunshine.  Alt shares hiking tips and gear suggestions for of all ages.  This is a family friendly event. For additional information, visit

What People Are Saying about A Walk for Sunshine:

A Walk for Sunshine is a Book of the Year Fore Word Reviews’ GOLD medalist

First Place Travel Recreation Winner—Forward National Best Book Awards.

“ENGAGING”—New York Newsday

“REFRESHINGLY FUNNY”—Indianapolis Starr

“HUMOROUS and INSPIRATIONAL”—Lexington Herald-Leader

“ENLIGHTENING and INSPIRING”—Blue Ridge Outdoors


Presentation Title: The Adventures of Bubba Jones—Time Traveling Through the Great Smoky Mountains

Program Description: This presentation is meant for kids (elementary age and up) and families.  Through storytelling, slides, and audience participation, you will adventure along with Tommy “Bubba Jones” and his sister Jenny “Hug-a-Bug” as they learn more about the Great Smoky Mountain National Park than they ever thought they would when their Papa Lewis lets them in on a family secret: The family has legendary time traveling skills! With these abilities, Bubba Jones and Hug-a-Bug travel back in time and meet the park’s founders, its earliest settlers, native Cherokee Indians, wild animals, extinct creatures and learn what the park was like millions of years ago.  Explore the Smokies with Bubba Jones and family in a whole new way.

This presentation is based on the first book in Jeff Alt’s new national Park book series: The Adventures of Bubba Jones: Time Traveling Through the Great Smoky Mountains (Paperback; 9780825307867; $9.99; Beaufort Books; fiction; Age Range: 8 – 12; Grade Range: 3 – 7)

What People Are Saying about The Adventures of Bubba Jones: National Geographic recommends The Adventures of Bubba Jones for older elementary kids that want to learn more about national parks and as a read aloud for younger kids.

Backpacker Magazine included The Adventures of Bubba Jones with the Top Five Adventure Books You Need To Read.’

“[One of the] Top Five Adventure Books You Need To Read… Alt blends backpacking with “The Magic Tree House.” Bubba Jones and his family have the ability to travel through time. They use these powers to explore Great Smoky Mountain National Park, from its early settlers, to its logging days, to its park inauguration. This clever spin on children’s outdoor literature is sure to make every kid want to hit the trail.” ─Catherina Leipold, Backpacker Magazine

“Jeff Alt’s creative new book holds the promise of bringing kids back to nature and the great outdoors. Alt, a fine writer and a skilled outdoorsman, has created a wonder world for young readers in this lively historical fiction set in the misty peaks and hollows of the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee and North Carolina. Blending geology, biology, history, fantasy and outdoor adventure, Alt’s endearing characters take young readers on a magical “time-travel” through the Smokies. Along the way, they’ll have a cracking good read while also learning a lot. And that’s what historical fiction, for young and old, is all about.”
─Arthur McDade, Great Smoky Mountains National Park ranger (ret.), and the author of Old Smoky Mountain Days, The Natural Arches of the Big South Fork, and a contributor to The Encyclopedia of Appalachia

“Kids (and grown-ups) will love this adventurous time-traveling tour of the Great Smoky Mountains. Jeff Alt has woven the science and history of the Smokies into a family adventure that’s so fun-filled kids won’t even realize how much they are learning! Can’t wait for the next book!”
─Emily Morgan, author of the Next Time You See picture book series and co-author of Picture-Perfect Science Lessons


Presenter Biography: Jeff Alt is a talented speaker, hiking expert, an award-winning author.  He has written four book, The Adventures of Bubba Jones, A Walk for Sunshine (Appalachian Trail), Four Boots One Journey (John Muir Trail) and Get Your Kids Hiking: How to Start Them Young and Keep it Fun. Alt’s adventures have been featured in media nationwide including: Backpacker Magazine,, ESPN’s Inside America’s National Parks, Hallmark Channel, CNN-Radio, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, LA Times, The USA Today, the AP, the Chicago Sun Times, Shape Magazine, Scholastic Parent & Child and many more.  Alt is a member of the Outdoor Writers Association of America (OWAA). He has shared his Appalachian Trail adventures and hiking advice with guests in the Shenandoah National Park and the Great Smoky Mountains as well as many other outdoor venues. Alt holds a master’s degree from Miami University in Ohio. Alt continues to host the annual Sunshine Walk, 5k Run and Roll inspired from his Appalachian Trail journey. Alt has been hiking since his youth. He has walked the 2,160-mile Appalachian Trail, the 218-mile John Muir Trail with his wife, and he carried his 21-month old daughter along the coast of Ireland on a family hike. His son was on the Appalachian Trail at 6 weeks of age.