Outdoor News - April 27, 2018
Hanes and The National Park Foundation
On Wednesday, to celebrate National Park Week, HanesBrands and the National Park Foundation (NPF) launched the inaugural designs in a first-of-its-kind apparel collection, initially available online at hanes.com/nationalparks
The Hanes short-sleeve T-shirts, which sell for $12.99, feature Golden Gate, Rocky Mountain, Zion and Sequoia national parks, the “Pack it In, Pack it Out” message and, for the first time ever on product, a licensed logo from the National Park Service. The logo, unveiled in 2014 as an expansion of the National Park Service brand family, complements the iconic Arrowhead that continues to serve as the official insignia of the National Park Service. HanesBrands is the first National Park Foundation partner to launch product incorporating this licensed logo as part of the Find Your Park/Encuentra Tu Parque movement to help raise awareness about America’s national parks.
The licensed collection is a component of a five-year partnership between HanesBrands and the National Park Foundation – the official nonprofit partner of the National Park Service – that will generate $4 million for NPF.
“As the official apparel of the National Park Foundation, HanesBrands is focused on greatly expanding the distribution of NPF-affiliated apparel, raising the profile of the foundation, increasing revenue for the foundation, and using our consumer-leading brands and significant graphic apparel capabilities to create beautiful clothing worthy of the grandeur of our national parks,” said John Marsh, group president of global activewear for HanesBrands.
Rhode Island Awards Grants
On Tuesday, Rhode Island's Department of Environmental Management (DEM) continued focus on supporting healthy communities and promoting outdoor recreation by awarding $3 million in matching grants to 15 local municipalities to develop or renovate recreational facilities in their communities. The grants will fund 19 projects across the state, including new basketball, pickleball, and multi-sport courts; a boat ramp; universally-accessible outdoor fitness equipment; sports fields; a water-play feature; restrooms; and various site improvements.
"Having clean, safe and attractive parks and recreational facilities in our communities provides tremendous economic, health, and environmental benefits for Rhode Islanders," said Governor Gina M. Raimondo. "Modernizing playgrounds, sports fields, and walking trails will encourage people to get outside, get active, and explore our beautiful state."
Rhode Island's outdoor recreation industry is an increasingly important part of the state's economy, contributing an estimated $3.3 billion annually and supporting 36,000 jobs. As part of a larger network of recreational opportunities in the state, municipal facilities play an important role in beautifying communities, supporting public health, and promoting a cleaner environment. Including today's awards, 519 grants have been awarded and $73 million invested in improvements in all 39 Rhode Island communities since the inception of DEM's community recreation grant program in 1988.
"We're thrilled to assist communities across Rhode Island to improve and expand their recreational facilities through these grant awards," said DEM Director Janet Coit. "Providing people with places in their neighborhood to get outdoors and enjoy nature is part of DEM's core mission, is good for health, fosters our next generation of environmental stewards, and ensures Rhode Island remains a wonderful place to live."
The grants, which require a community match and range from $77,600 to $300,000, are funded through 2016 Open Space bond proceeds. Categories include large grants which range from over $100,000 up to $300,000 each, and small grants of up to $100,000 each for projects of smaller cost. The state grants will be matched by local funding to generate over $5 million in recreational project improvements throughout Rhode Island.
For more information on DEM programs and initiatives, visit www.dem.ri.gov. Follow them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RhodeIslandDEM or on Twitter (@RhodeIslandDEM) for timely updates.
National Bike Month
With spring in the air, the League of American Bicyclists, the national organization of bicyclists, has reminded us that May is National Bike Month, May 14 - 18 is Bike to Work Week and Friday, May 18 is Bike to Work Day. We urge everyone to bike to work or try cycling for fun, fitness, transportation, exploration or adventure.
If you would like to promote bicycle riding in your community the League offers a great guide to creating events and promoting National Bike Month. Besides the month, Bike to Work week and day, you might want to promote Bike to School Day (the second week of May) or CycloFemme on Mothers' Day. All the bike-related activities of the month are intended to get more people outdoors and enjoying bicycling.
Whether you promote or participate in a formal event or not. Get out doors and enjoy a bike ride. Mountain bikes, road bikes, hybrids, commuters, cruisers, single speed bikes, or kid's bikes, find what works for you then get out there and explore!
National Parks and the Economy
As the nation celebrated National Park Week
this week, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke announced that visitor spending in communities near national parks in 2017 resulted in a $35.8 billion benefit to the nation’s economy – a nearly $1 billion increase from 2016 – and supported 306,000 jobs.
According the annual National Park Service report, 2017 National Park Visitor Spending Effects, more than 330 million visitors in 2017 spent $18.2 billion in the communities near national parks. Of the 306,000 jobs supported by that spending, more than 255,000 were in those same communities that lie within 60 miles of a park.
“Parks are priceless not only for their intrinsic natural beauty and historical significance, but also for the economic benefits they provide to communities across the country,” said Will Shafroth, President and CEO of the National Park Foundation. “The investments we make in our national parks protect cherished places while promoting community and economic development.”
Visitor spending varied across the National Park System, from big parks like Yellowstone National Park which attracted 4.1 million people and supported more than 7,350 jobs, to smaller parks like Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site that attracted more than 45,000 visitors and supported 43 jobs.
The lodging sector received the highest direct contributions with $5.5 billion in economic output to local gateway economies and 49,000 jobs. The restaurants sector received the next greatest direct contributions with $3.7 billion in economic output to local gateway economies and 60,500 jobs.
According to the 2017 report, most park visitor spending was for lodging/camping (32.9 percent) followed by food and beverages (27.5 percent), gas and oil (12.1 percent), souvenirs and other expenses (10.1 percent), admissions and fees (10.0 percent), and local transportation (7.5 percent).
“National parks connect us with nature and help tell America’s story,” said Dan Smith, Deputy Director of the National Park Service. “They are also a vital part of our nation’s economy, drawing hundreds of millions of visitors every year who fill hotels and restaurants, hire outfitters and rely on other local businesses that help drive a vibrant tourism and outdoor recreation industry.”
“National parks are proven economic engines for local communities and states,” said Marcia Argust, who directs The Pew Charitable Trusts’ project on restoring national parks. “Ensuring that our park sites are safe, accessible, and preserved for future generations is a smart and necessary investment.”
The peer-reviewed economics report was prepared by economists Catherine Cullinane Thomas and Egan Cornachione of the U.S. Geological Survey and Lynne Koontz of the National Park Service. It includes information by parks and by states on visitor spending, the number of jobs supported by visitor spending and other statistics.
Report authors also produced an interactive tool
that enables users to explore visitor spending, jobs, labor income, value added, and output effects by sector for national, state, and local economies. Users can also view year-by-year trend data.
Outdoor Kids in Washington State
On Tuesday, Gov. Jay Inslee of Washington announced the award of nearly $1.5 million in grants to programs in 18 counties statewide aimed at getting kids outdoors.
The No Child Left Inside grants will be awarded by the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission. The grants target at-risk youth by focusing on programs that provide outdoor education and recreation programs. In addition, nearly one-third of the 39 projects to receive funding employ veterans, a special emphasis of the program. The Legislature approved an additional $500,000 for the program this biennium.
The grants will provide programs for nearly 23,000 kids. This year’s grant recipients are offering a variety of educational and recreational activities, from exploring Mount Saint Helens to planting trees for a salmon restoration project, to sailing on a 133-foot ship, to white water river rafting.
“Some of my best childhood memories are of being outside,” Inslee said. “Many of our kids don’t get that opportunity today. That’s why these local programs are so important. When children spend time outside, so many good things happen. Kids can improve their health and their grades. And that’s a win for all of us.”
Special Savings for Our Readers
If you click on a product link (other than Hanes) in this email and purchase something from the vendor's website, we get a small percentage of the sale price. This costs you nothing extra and helps us keep EXPLORE! The eMagazine for Adventure and Exploration going. Don't want to buy anything? Consider becoming a Patron. Click the button below the video. You make EXPLORE! possible. Thank you for your support!!
Video of the Week
As Bike Month approaches, here's a video that offers a really great introduction to bike touring. You can build a broad range of adventures on a bike whatever your fitness level or wherever you want to travel. Oh, there's some great scenery too! Enjoy!