#SaveLWCF, Save Colorado’s Outdoor Treasures
Find out how OIA and the LWCF Coalition are working to grow and protect the state’s most iconic places and the outdoor recreation economy they support.
After a successful bid to get the Land and Water Conservation Fund reauthorized in 2015, we are again facing its expiration in October 2018. For the next year, the LWCF Coalition will be creating weekly profiles to show where Land and Water Conservation Fund dollars go to support significant public land and recreation projects in each of the 50 U.S. States. Last week, the coalition featured Colorado, Outdoor Industry Association’s home state and the new home of the Outdoor Retailer trade show.
Outdoor Retailer debuts in its new city this week: Denver, Colorado. The Mile High City and the state of Colorado are ideal to host this premier outdoor summit because of the state’s commitment to public land access and enthusiasm around its strong outdoor recreation economy.
“In Denver, we are committed to creating and preserving our parks, trails and open spaces because these community assets support our residents and neighborhoods. The Land and Water Conservation Fund is an important tool to help us keep this commitment.” —Denver Mayor Michael Hancock
LWCF has invested more than $268 million to protect Colorado’s outdoor places, public access to trails, climbing spots, sportsmen access, and to build close to home parks. From national forests, to Colorado’s breathtaking national parks and wildlife refuges, LWCF has protected places like Mesa Verde National Park, Canyons of the Ancients National Monument, Arapaho National Forest, Two Ponds National Wildlife Refuge. Colorado’s booming $28 billion outdoor recreation industry is an economic powerhouse – supporting 229,000 jobs which generate $9.7 billion in wages and salaries and produces $2 billion annually in state and local tax revenue.
But it’s not just the state’s iconic landscapes that benefit from LWCF. A shining example of the value of urban park infrastructure and investment, Denver’s city-close neighborhoods have enjoyed the benefit of LWCF funds. Money from the fund supported a nature education park in Denver’s Montbello neighborhood and Denver Urban Gardens. Denver’s current Mayor Michael Hancock is very committed to Denver city parks and the importance of LWCF to get much needed outdoor space in the confines of the city. “In Denver, we are committed to creating and preserving our parks, trails and open spaces because these community assets support our residents and neighborhoods,” says Hancock. “The Land and Water Conservation Fund is an important tool to help us keep this commitment.” The mayor will deliver an opening message to Outdoor Retailer + Snow Show attendees at this week’s Industry Breakfast, which you can stream with Brandlive.