By Julie Johansen and Robin Hunt
The Emery County Travel and Tourism Board contracted with Public Lands Solutions to create a community-based proposal for recreation asset development within the county. The purpose of this report was to present a community-supported proposal for recreational opportunities in the area that would bring economic benefits to the county.
This report was presented to the public during open meetings on Sept. 1 at noon and again at 6 p.m. in the administration building in Castle Dale. The same meetings were hosted once more the following day in Green River.
The report stated that there are two primary challenges that must be addressed, with the first being that visitors must be directed and incentivized into the cities and town where goods and services can be purchased. The second was in regard to existing and new recreation assets, which must be better signed and marked, allowing better marketing by both the county and user groups. It is the goal of the proposal to realize the economic potential for communities inherent in the recreational assets surrounding the cities and towns.
The recreation activities discussed in the report for public consideration included OHV, mountain biking, hiking, equestrian, climbing, fishing, hunting, boating and snowmobiling. Each area of the county was given recommendations for name changes, signage, enhancements and development.
In these meetings, a map showed various areas of the county that are being highlighted, and they shared their research and suggestions on improvements to be made in those areas. They asked for feedback on their suggestions and what potential problems there might be.
The meetings in Castle Dale were sparsely attended, though a few comments included maintaining the integrity of the area as well as coordinating with towns, cities and other recreational groups that are working on similar ideas.
Following these discussions, Public Land Solutions and the Emery County Travel and Tourism Board will work on the identified priorities and make strides toward working with the municipalities, public lands and other relevant groups involved to bring responsible recreation to Emery County.