Minnesota forms outdoor recreation task force

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Minnesota formed an Outdoor Recreation Task Force to study and identify economic and participation opportunities around the state’s outdoor recreation resources. The creation of the task force was pursued by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and Explore Minnesota, and was supported by outdoor recreation businesses in the state.

The task force will consist of 20 seats and 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.

“While it has always been clear that boating and fishing are cherished pastimes in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, the decision by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and Explore Minnesota to establish a task force solely focusing on promoting and expanding outdoor recreation is an unequivocal testament to our industry’s economic importance in Minnesota,” Nicole Vasilaros, senior vice president of government and legal affairs at the National Marine Manufacturers Association, said in a statement.

Jessica Wahl, executive director of the Outdoor Recreation Roundtable, called the task force announcement a “stunning example of our sector working together with the state to create real support for the growing outdoor recreation economy in Minnesota. Time and again, we have seen how states with offices of outdoor recreation are better able to leverage their existing outdoor recreation businesses and resources into attracting even more outdoor businesses while increasing the overall recreation economy in those states.”

Applications for the Minnesota Outdoor Recreation Task Force are available here. They are due Jan. 10.

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