Oregon Outdoor Recreation Initiative
For Oregonians, a strong connection to our great outdoors is in our DNA and is part of our identity. From hikers to anglers, mountain bikers to hunters, loggers to biologists, ranchers to miners, to outfitters, guides, mountain lodge operators, and outdoor equipment producers, many of us rely on Oregon’s bountiful natural resources for our livelihoods and recreation.
Oregon’s bountiful natural resources are cornerstone to our legacy, our identity, and our economy. As an industry, outdoor recreation has the potential to significantly impact the well-being of Oregon’s economy, its communities, its residents, and its natural resources. Developing a shared vision with a common agenda for how we focus our efforts to improve the outdoor recreation economy will ensure that our impacts are positive and inclusive of all.
This is the impetus for the Oregon Outdoor Recreation Initiative, a statewide effort to bring together businesses, agencies, land managers, conservation groups, and recreational user groups around the goal of expanding access to outdoor recreation and increasing the economic impact and sustainability of Oregon’s outdoor recreation industry.
Through a coordinated and collaborative effort, we will: build capacity and synergy to expand outdoor recreation opportunities for residents and visitors, create sustainable economic vitality for Oregon’s communities, and make Oregon a world-class outdoor recreation destination for all.
A FOUNDATION FOR STATEWIDE COLLABORATION
To jumpstart this initiative, Travel Oregon convened a leadership team comprised of 25 members that represent stakeholder groups from key sectors of the outdoor recreation economy. From June 2016 to February 2017, the team worked to develop a draft 15-year vision, critical five-year outcomes, and two-year strategies to achieve these goals.
The leadership team identified nine impact areas for the development of vision and strategies:
- World-Class Experiences and Infrastructure
- Economic Impact
- Leadership and Advocacy
- Community Livability and Well-being of Oregonians
- Diversity of Enthusiasts
- Stewardship of Natural Resources
- Transportation and Distribution of Impacts
- Marketing and Communications
Here you will find the outputs from the leadership team’s work so far. These documents serve as a starting point to focus collective action and should be viewed as “working documents.” They will evolve and be amended over time as refinements and course corrections are made.
PRIORITY STRATEGIES FOR COLLECTIVE ACTION
As the leadership team brainstormed strategies, we considered which strategies would garner the most support from stakeholders, particularly over the next two years. We also considered their potential to leave remarkable and lasting impacts in Oregon. Strategies were ranked and prioritized using the following criteria:
- Can significant progress be made in two years?
- Is it catalytic in nature?
- Does it create focus for collective action?
- Does it have leadership or a champion already in place?
These strategies are to be considered in draft form while we gather input from stakeholders across the state who may influence what strategies are undertaken and how they are prioritized.
SEEKING YOUR INPUT
Travel Oregon is now sharing these DRAFT documents statewide. We will convene five listening sessions around the state in April and May 2017 to gather insights into local and regional priorities for advancing outdoor recreation. Local input and opportunities will be considered in the process of finalizing the strategy.
Through this process, we intend to catalyze local and regional support for advancing outdoor recreation opportunities and business development, as well as broaden ongoing involvement in the initiative. We anticipate convening (or co-convening) regular networking events that will take place in different locations around the state three to four times per year. These events will provide opportunities to foster new connections, share information and make continued and sustained progress around this work. Travel Oregon has modeled this effort after best practices and lessons learned from its experience convening the Oregon Bicycle Tourism Partnership (since 2004) and the Oregon Agritourism Network (since 2014).
If you not are not able to attend one of the public outreach meetings we strongly encourage you to provide your input by completing this online survey by Monday, May 22nd. The findings from both the survey and the public outreach meetings will be shared with the Leadership Team and utilized to fine tune the direction of this initiative.
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