Outdoor recreation industry leaders, including Outdoor Recreation Roundtable (ORR), REI and Outdoor Industry Association (OIA), applaud Minnesota’s announcement of an Outdoor Recreation Task Force (ORTF) to study and identify economic and participation opportunities around the state’s robust outdoor recreation resources. The effort to create the task force was jointly pursued by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Explore Minnesota. It was supported by many Minnesota outdoor recreation businesses including boating, fishing, hunting and paddling businesses. The task force will have 20 seats and members will be announced in January. Outdoor recreation accounts for 2.7 percent of Minnesota’s economy, supports 101,000 jobs in the state and contributes $9.6 billion to Minnesota’s economy.
“The outdoor recreation community has worked collectively before to make great strides, but Minnesota’s announcement of an Outdoor Recreation Task Force is a stunning example of our sector working together with the state to create real support for the growing outdoor recreation economy in Minnesota,” said Jessica Wahl, executive director of Outdoor Recreation Roundtable (ORR). “
OIA Vice President of Government Affairs Patricia Rojas-Ungar says, “This effort sets Minnesota on a path to play an even larger role in advancing the stewardship of its public lands, nurturing the economic development of its recreation assets and increasing access to the great outdoors for its residents and visitors. OIA and its members will continue to champion this national movement to grow outdoor recreation, because it’s good for jobs, it’s good for our land and water, and it’s good for our children and families.”
REI Co-op director of government and community affairs Marc Berejka says. “With this announcement, Minnesota becomes the 17th state to create either a task force or recreation office dedicated to maximizing the social and economic benefits of time outdoors.”
Minnesota will select 20 task force members through an online application process on the DNR’s website. For an application, click here.