Outdoor Recreation Team

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Katahdin Region Outdoor Recreation Investment Strategy

Between 2020 and 2023, Stakeholders in the Katahdin Region collaborated on a significant project centered on the outdoor recreation economy. This initiative directly built upon the efforts outlined in the Katahdin Gazetteer: A Roadmap to the Future

The project, funded through a grant from USDA Rural Development’s Rural Community Development Initiative (RCDI) secured by the Northern Forest Center in 2019, focused on three priorities.

First it sought to enhance the capabilities of local nonprofits dedicated to harnessing economic and community benefits from tourism and outdoor recreation in Maine’s Katahdin region. Each of these groups received financial assistance, empowering them to expand their capacity and drive strategic projects related to outdoor recreation in the Katahdin region.

  • Our Katahdin
  • Outdoor Sport Institute (OSI)
  • Katahdin Area Trails
  • Millinocket Memorial Library
  • The Town of Millinocket
  • Friends of Katahdin Woods & Waters
  • Thrive Penobscot

Second, the project focused on inventorying and mapping existing outdoor recreation assets in the region. This effort was led by OSI with technical support from Community Geographics.

Finally, the project concluded with identification and mapping of current and emerging recreation development projects. This effort, completed by OSI and the Northern Forest Center, analyzed specific project opportunities based on three key factors:

  • Economic Impact: assessing the potential to attract visitors, drive spending, and enhance local appeal for residents and entrepreneurs
  • Community Impact: evaluating the likelihood of increasing local engagement in outdoor recreation, improving health and wellness, and enhancing overall quality of life
  • Readiness: gauging the project’s preparedness in terms of leadership, planning, and access to funding for successful implementation within the next 3-5 years

To learn more about the project and view the identified projects, click here.

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