Tuesday, Nov. 27, 7:30 p.m.

BOZEMAN – A few years back, author Alan Kesselheim and his wife Marypat Zitzer had a great notion. They decided on an adventurous way to celebrate each of their children’s coming of age experience: a paddling walkabout. It was also an excuse to take on a few epic trips.

The theme was to return to the same rivers where Marypat had been pregnant with the kids. Over four years they did just that, spanning North America from the Arctic to Mexico, spending up to 40 days at a time on remote and wild rivers, encountering wildlife from polar bear to tarantula, and honoring each child with the family experience of these birth rivers and the surrounding geography.

Kesselheim’s recent book, Let Them Paddle: Coming of Age on the Water, chronicles this dramatic series of adventures, highlights some of the most evocative wilderness left on earth, and shares an intimate family exploration of the transition in life our culture does so little to help with.

Kesselheim has lived in Bozeman for more than 30 years and he and Marypat raised their three children here. He is a freelance writer and teacher and has published 11 books and hundreds of magazine articles in publications from Audubon to Canoe & Kayak, and Natural History to Montana Quarterly.

“Wilderness and…” is a series of presentations sponsored by Montana Wilderness Association. These presentations are recommended for area newcomers, families, outdoor enthusiasts and anyone with a passion for wild places and protecting Montana’s wildlands. This program is free and open to the public.

Kesselheim’s reading and discussion will be at the Emerson Cultural Center in Bozeman, in the Weaver Room, on Nov. 27 at 7:30 p.m.