6 - November 2017 Woodall’s Campground Management In Florida, the Herbert Hoover Dike sur- rounding Lake Okeechobee was recently listed as one of the most vulnerable struc- tures in the country, prompting calls for evacuations south of the lake in advance of Hurricane Irma’s approach over breach and flood concerns. Subsequent high water lev- elsinthelakeandcontinuedquestionsabout the effect on the dike’s integrity resulted in the USACE discharging the high water to the east and west — to already burdened and sensitive coastal estuaries. The repetitive discharges from Lake Okeechobee highlight theneedforfullfederalsupporttoaccelerate comprehensive Everglades restoration and mitigate this ongoing threat to the state’s recreational industry. The time is now for federal action and ap- propriation to restore, secure and enhance our recreational infrastructure. Collectively, the outdoor recreation industry’s $887 billion nationwide economic impact supports 7.6 million jobs. It also provides more than $65 billion in federal tax revenue and more than $52 billion in state tax revenue. Encompassing diverse activities ranging from hunting and fishing to trail and water sports and off-roading, the outdoor recre- ation industry is an important economic engine and social component of our nation. In Florida, the sportfishing industry alone generates $9.6 billion in economic impacts and supports more than 128,000 jobs and is integral to the cultural identity of the state as the “Fishing Capital of the World.” Recreationalinfrastructureshouldbeakey componentofhurricanerecovery,andourin- dustry offers its assistance and expertise to evaluate, promote and assist with recovery and restoration. Thank you for your strong commitment to these areas as they rebuild. ORIR —from page 3 Manufacturers of Quality Recreation FUNniture www.ParkEquipment.com 1-800-376-7897 2061 Sulphur Springs Rd Morristown, TN 37813 Sincerely, American Horse Council American Recreation Coalition American Sportfishing Association Association of Marina Industries Boat U.S. International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association MarineRetailersAssociationoftheAmericas Motorcycle Industry Council ARVC – National Association of RV Parks & Campgrounds National Marine Manufacturers Association National Park Hospitality Association National Shooting Sports Foundation Outdoor Industry Association PeopleForBikes Coalition Pure Fishing RecreationalOff-HighwayVehicleAssociation The National RV Dealers Association Recreation Vehicle Industry Association Specialty Equipment Market Association Specialty Vehicle Institute of America WCM ARC Report Highlights the Industry’s Strong 2017, Projects Still Stronger Activity in the Coming Year Recreationalactivitiescontinuetobe amainstayoftheAmericanlifestyleand economy, according to the American Recreation Coalition’s new report Out- door Recreation Outlook 2018. According to the coalition’s report, outdoor recreation industry leaders re- port good sales and increased activity for 2017 — and project still stronger ac- tivity in 2018. Americans spend more than $887 billion annually on equip- ment ranging from skis and tents to RVs and boats and on services ranging from fishing licenses to zip lines, supporting millions of jobs in manufacturing, sales and service. Public Lands andWaters A core strength of outdoor recreation in America is the lure of America’s pub- lic lands and waters, covering nearly one-third of the nation’s surface. Best known is America’s National Park Sys- tem with 400-plus locations, ranging from world-renowned destinations to small historic sites. Visitation also is on the rise, up 7.7% from2016levels,with23.7millionmore visits year to date. Many of the 330-plus millionvisitstonationalparksrelyupon services of national park concessioners, including lodging, food, retail, trans- portation and guide services. Recreation.gov — the unified means for making reservations on all federal lands — reported 19 million users and 37 million sessions in 2017, up 26% and 22%, respectively.The inventory of fed- eral reservable facilities also increased to 3,367 sites. The steady growth in the useofRecreation.govleadsitsoperators to anticipate a continued climb in visits due to increased inventory, support of high-profile events and locations, and targeted marketing strategies. Asecond-generationwebsiteisinde- velopment, which will greatly expand Recreation.gov’s ability to ease outdoor trip planning — offering entry passes and license sales, and linking campsites to more recreation opportunity infor- mation. Adding to this positive outlook for public lands and waters are recent ini- tiatives announced by U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke. He is harness- ingtheexperienceandknow-howofthe recreation industry by forming the Recreation Advisory Committee and engaging with industry groups like the Outdoor Recreation Industry Round- table to examine how public-private partnershipscanexpandaccess,inspire innovation, improve infrastructure and more. This renewed emphasis on outdoor recreationiscreatingnewopportunities forAmericanseverywheretoenjoytheir great outdoors. State park visitation trends also con- tinuetoreachrecordlevels.Collectively, America’s state parks hosted more than 790 million visitors in 2016, 373 million of which were to fee-collecting areas. State parks now report an inventory of more than 240,000 campsites, of which about one-third are seasonal. Of the nearly 66 million overnight visitors to state parks in the past year, more than 61.4 million were by campers. Camping Gains Ground KampgroundsofAmericaInc.(KOA) — the nation’s largest private camp- groundsystem—reportedaverystrong year across the board. According to KOA’s 2017 North American Camping Report, camping remains one of the mostpopular,affordableandaccessible pastimes in North America. An esti- mated 13 million U.S. households planned to camp more in 2017 than theydidin2016andmorethanonemil- lion new households have started camping each year since 2014. WCM their park — which includes a gaga ball pit, a mining sluice, a cafe and a three-acre catch-and-release fishing lake — with new activities and entertainment and, of course, Yogi Bear and Boo Boo. “Jellystonehasalwaysbeenmyfranchise of choice,” McCreary said. “I grew up with Yogi. How fun is that!” There are currently 81 Jellystone Parks acrosstheU.S.andCanada,andthenetwork continues to expand as growing numbers of family-owned campgrounds join the Jelly- stone Park franchise system, owned by Mil- ford, Ohio-based Leisure Systems Inc. WCM CountryStageCampgroundinNova,Ohio, which has been family owned and operated by Pamela and Todd McCreary for the past decade,willbecomeOhio’sfourthYogiBear’s Jellystone Camp-Resort when it reopens May 1 for the 2018 camping season. “We will be known as the Cleveland/San- dusky Jellystone Park,” said Pamela Mc- Creary,addingthatthe150-siteparkwillhave new signage and other improvements, in- cludinganoutdoormovieareaandrentalac- commodations,whenitreopensinthespring. OhioCampgroundtoBecomeNewestJellystone McCreary said becoming a Jellystone Park will bring a new level of excitement to