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The Prescott Daily Courier | Prescott, Arizona

home : opinions : opinions July 22, 2014

9/17/2013 6:00:00 AM
Letter: Let's promote 'go out and play' tourism


We recently completed an 11-week road trip in the Pacific and Rocky Mountain West. We loved almost every minute of our 8,000-mile trip, and the numerous "five-star" trails we hiked, but realized Prescott's easily accessible network of trails is hard to beat. Prescott-area trails have so much to offer people of all ages and energy levels, and they are right here in our back yard. Within 15 minutes of our Prescott home, we can walk on a different trail every day of the month.

This was not the case when we moved here in the late '80s, and we thank the Prescott National Forest, Prescott's Parks & Recreation Department, the Over the Hill Gang, Chris Hosking and a host of other organizations and individuals for making it so. We also thank the citizens of Prescott for approving the 2000 Streets/Open Space Sales Tax Initiative that made so many of the new trails possible.

While tourist events have their place, outdoor opportunities like hiking, birding, paddling and biking, are less date-specific, and take advantage of our year-round natural beauty and infrastructure. We think Prescott's awesome catalog of trails could provide just the off-season tourism boost our little city needs.

We envision a marketing campaign geared to baby boomers like us: folks who would be easily sold on the idea of spending all or part of a visit hiking in spectacular scenery within minutes of their hotel or campsite. Hikes might be paired with an after-hike beverage and a well-earned restaurant meal, or with an afternoon of downtown shopping.

Borrowing from the inscription on the new Granite Gardens Trail bench, let's promote "go outside and play" tourism.

Toni Kaus and Mary Trevor


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Reader Comments

Posted: Sunday, September 22, 2013
Article comment by: R J

How much CO2 did you pump into our fragile atmosphere on your "8000 mile fun trip"?

Posted: Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Article comment by: trail user

Dear O Kay:

I invite you to come out on the trails around Prescott and see the people from at least 4 generations getting exercise, fresh air, and a pleasant dose of nature.

Posted: Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Article comment by: O Kay

Please no more boomers! Inter-generational audience please.

Posted: Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Article comment by: Jenny Cooper

We deal enough with tourists downtown, the trails are where I go to escape them! Seriously the last place I wanna see tourism!!! Worst idea everrrr

Posted: Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Article comment by: wait does that mean?

We also thank the citizens of Prescott for approving the 2000 Streets/Open Space Sales Tax Initiative that made so many of the new trails possible.

Wait, does that mean WE, the taxpayers, already own these trails? Then why is it only free on Wednesdays to park? And why do we have to pay to enter the lakes we already paid for? UPKEEP I hear you say..........aren't WE still paying for the upkeep by paying our taxes? Confused. That's why I use the trails where I don't pay to park. So, don't those trails, where I don't pay to park, still need upkeep? How are they funded? Confused.........but still paying taxes...

Posted: Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Article comment by: Community Forest Trust

The Community Forest Trust, a not-for-profit organization, recently successfully completed its contract with the Prescott National Forest for the volunteer program that provided many services for our trails. That included over 6,000 hours of volunteerism. We are looking now to help coordinate the future of the trail systems for all users in Central Arizona. Groups included are Yavapai Trails Association, Open Space Alliance,the Over the Hill Gang, local municipalities and equestrian and off road groups as well as mountain biking groups and other interest groups. We have one of the greatest trail systems in the country and most are built and maintained with little to no monies.
The advent of sequestration has affected changes to the National Forest programs and CFT looks forward to becoming even more active as advocates for our outdoors and the quality of life this wonderful area affords us. We will be involved in helping to plan and coordinate future discussions and implementations for our outdoor resources in the near future including participating in the upcoming Outdoor Expo at Watson Lake in October.
Gary Ian Worob, CFT board member.

Posted: Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Article comment by: Hokas Pokas

I agree, we live in a beautiful area.

Years ago I was fortunate to move here from an equally nice city that gradually changed from a primarily light industrial/manufacturing economy to strictly tourism/entertainment. A "boutique" city. There are now two demographic levels that live there: The very wealthy professionals and retirees in the "nicer' neighborhoods and the low income folks in the out of the way neighborhoods that service them, as well as the tourists. The low income groups are sustained by low wage, low skill jobs, food stamps, rent control . . . government subsidies. The tourists are directed to the "pretty" places. Gone are the middle income jobs provided by industry.

I hope Prescott does not follow this example.

Posted: Tuesday, September 17, 2013
Article comment by: Just Visiting

When we come to Prescott, we come here to relax and not to hit some dusty, crowded trail. We like walking around the square and visiting the shops especially when there is an event happening at the square. We and our friends are well aware of the many trails surrounding the town but we like to chow down and take it easy.

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