Outdoor Industry Association Releases State-By-State Outdoor Recreation Economy Report

Across all fifty states, reports show a thriving outdoor recreation economy generating billions in consumer spending annually and supporting millions of American jobs.

July 26, 2017

BOULDER, Colo. – July 26, 2017 – Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) today released the state-level Outdoor Recreation Economy Report featuring economic data for all 50 states across the United States, the largest and most comprehensive state-by-state report of its kind. The data underscores a growing economic force that generates billions in consumer spending and directly contributes millions of good-paying, American jobs in communities across the country.

Earlier this year, OIA released its national Outdoor Recreation Economy Report, which found that the outdoor recreation economy generates $887 billion in consumer spending annually and directly sustains 7.6 million American jobs. The state report released today offers a deeper look into a thriving sector that’s helping to create healthier economies and healthier communities.

“No matter your political affiliation, where you live or your walk of life, the outdoors brings us together,” said Amy Roberts, OIA executive director. “From Maine to California, consumers are spending more on outdoor recreation as millions of Americans depend on it for their livelihoods. Outdoor recreation is a powerful economic engine that contributes to businesses and healthy communities in each and every state and is a vital and sustainable sector that relies on investing in and protecting America’s public lands and waters.”

Here are the highlights from the state report:

State Annual Consumer Spending (in billions) Direct Jobs % of Residents Participating in Outdoor Recreation Each Year
California $92.0 691,000 56%
Colorado $28.0 229,000 71%
Idaho $7.8 78,000 79%
Kentucky $12.8 120,000 61%
Maine $8.2 76,000 70%
Minnesota $16.7 140,000 70%
Montana $7.1 71,000 81%
New Hampshire $8.7 79,000 69%
New Mexico $9.9 99,000 65%
New York $41.8 313,000 52%
North Carolina $28.0 260,000 56%
Oregon $16.4 172,000 69%
Utah $12.3 110,000 72%
Vermont $5.5 51,000 72%
Virginia $21.9 197,000 57%
Washington $26.2 201,000 72%
Wyoming $5.6 50,000 73%

 

All 50 state reports can be viewed here.

“The outdoor recreation economy continues to thrive across rural and urban America,” said REI President and CEO Jerry Stritzke. “These new state-by-state numbers show how Americans from every corner of the country love to spend time outdoors. People from all backgrounds continue to hike, camp, boat, fish, ski, and paddle. You name it. It’s a rich part of the nation’s heritage. And when we follow our passion and opt outside, we create economic activity across all 50 states. This is a sustainable, growing sector of the economy—one that drives positive return-on-investment throughout the country.”

With the outdoor recreation economy poised to continue to grow, there are actions that can be taken to support its positive economic impact. OIA urges elected policymakers to do the following:

  • Adequately fund state and local parks and trails to make them attractive and accessible to families and friends seeking to get outside.
  • Take steps to raise awareness of the importance of the outdoor recreation economy.
  • Develop and plan urban areas in a way that means every citizen can get outside and recreate within 30 minutes of their home.
  • Support policies that encourage outdoor innovators to start businesses.

Outdoor Industry Association issued the first Outdoor Recreation Economy state-level report in 2012 and has made significant improvements to the report since then. This second edition of the state report takes a broader view of the growing industry and its shifting demographics. The sample that was drawn for this study was designed to represent the U.S. population on the basis of gender, age, education and race.

Respondents were solicited through Survey Sampling International (SSI), a longtime leader in survey research. The report was made possible through the generous support of REI, Patagonia, The North Face, W.L. Gore, People for Bikes, The Teddy Roosevelt Conservation Partnership (TRCP) and The Outdoor Foundation.

 

About Outdoor Industry Association
Based in Boulder, Colo., with offices in Washington, D.C., Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) is the leading trade association for the outdoor industry and the title sponsor of Outdoor Retailer. Outdoor Industry Association unites and serves over 1,200 manufacturer, supplier, sales representative and retailer members through its focus on trade and recreation policy, sustainable business innovation and outdoor participation. For more information, visit outdoorindustry.org.

Media Contact
Jennifer Pringle
Outdoor Industry Association
VP, Marketing Communications and Research
jpringle@outdoorindustry.org