I can see the Summit in the foggy distance. I’ve been there before and know what it takes to reach it and what we’ll all get out of it. This year, it is escaping my reach; the conditions just aren’t right.
It is bittersweet to announce that we have chosen to cancel the Washington Outdoor Summit planned for this March in Bellingham. Recreation NW is in a transition this year with staffing, programming and events. Our board of directors agreed with my challenging recommendation to “push pause” on hosting the Summit next month in order to accomplish the priority goals for our organization.
We are working to establish the most effective means through which to continue advocating for those of us who work in the outdoor recreation industry. We will continue to enhance our regularly hosted Basecamp events in Bellingham, Seattle expand to new locations for people that work in the outdoor industry across the state.
Our attention is prioritized by the continued implementation of our new Parkscriptions program and adding the pieces to the puzzle – connecting providers, programs and our parks with the public. We will be launching a Public Health Campaign at our Recreation Expo on Saturday, February 23rd leading up to our expanded Whatcom Parkscriptions Day on Sunday, April 28th. Our focus for this year will be the underserved seniors in our community who need direction, encouragement and practical tools to help them get outside and enjoy the benefits of nature.
We thank you for your past support, continued interest, and patience with us as we grow as an organization and continue to deliver quality programming and events for our outdoor community.
I’d especially like to thank you those individuals and organizations for working with me to join us at the Summit this year.
Todd Elsworth is one of the many “Mossy-haired lunatics roaming the dripping peninsulas”, described in “I’m Here for the Weather” by Tom Robbins. As executive director, he works to fulfill our mission to teach the health benefits of nature, promote outdoor recreation, and steward the places where we play.