He’s a snowmobiler, cyclist, and avid outdoorsman and today Governor Phil Scott made good on his word to look at how Vermont can grow its outdoor recreation in a way that will have a positive effect on both lifestyle and the economy. (see video feed below)
Governor Phil Scott, Commissioner Michael Snyder of the Dept. of Forests, Parks and Recreation and members of the Vermont Outdoor Recreation Economic Collaborative (VOREC) announced some of the recommendations that have come out of more than nine months of meetings around the state. And you’ll be happy.
Perhaps the most exciting and immediately tangible one is a loaner program supported by Outdoor Gear Exchange whereby visitors will be able to pick up loaner gear at five popular state parks.
Marc Sherman, one of the owners and founders of Outdoor Gear Exchange, explained “We’ll have tents, lanterns, stoves and sleeping bags that you can reserve through Outdoor Gear Exchange and then pick up at one of the state parks at a very affordable price.” OGE, as it is commonly called, has expanded significantly in the last month. As Sherman said, “We’ve grown from 800 sq. feet to 50,000 sq. feet.”
Among the other recommendations was to work with the private-sector to help grow the outdoor recreation industry. Currently Tom Stuessy of Vermont Mountain Biking Alliance has created VOICe (Vermont Outdoor Innovation Coalition) to do just this (and Vermont Sports is a member).
In a third recommendation, VOREC proposed an intiative to help towns manage and grow outdoor recreation and the culture associated with it.
As Gov. Scott stressed, at the moment these are recommendations but hopes are they will be the building blocks for growth.