Made in America: Promoting the All-American Outdoor Experience
Secretary Ryan Zinke
July 17, 2017
This week, President Trump kicked off “Made in America Week.” At the Department of the Interior, we are taking this opportunity to promote and strengthen America’s tradition of outdoor recreation on public lands. The all-American outdoor experience was the idea of visionaries like President Theodore Roosevelt, and has been carried on by the federal government and Congress for years. It could not have been possible without help from philanthropic foundations, American businesses, and thousands of public-private partnerships across our public lands.
We already have thousands of partners across the country who fund and assist with visitor services, infrastructure, and even land acquisition for increased public access.
To highlight and expand on Made in America partnerships and products, this week Interior is hosting a roundtable with outdoor recreation industry leaders to brainstorm innovative ideas for how we can work together to build upon the outdoor experience on public lands. Some ideas I’ve already heard are for outdoor recreation outfitters to make investments in our public lands for things like energy-efficient cabins and fishing access points.
The Department is focused on identifying and expanding the best existing services, and bringing in new services to parks and recreation areas to preserve and enhance the American outdoor experience.
The All-American Outdoor Experience is part of who we are as Americans, but it’s also a big economic driver for communities across the country. As a whole, the outdoor recreation industry generates $887 billion in consumer spending and supports 7.6 million American jobs, according to industry analysts. In addition, the revenue the industry produces is a major boost to our economy.
Made in America is as much about products as much as it is about the shared American experience created here. It is about making memories by taking a kid fishing for the first time, or in my case, taking my wife hiking early in our relationship.
There’s a reason why 330 million people from across the country and around the world visit our parks every year, and why millions more flock to public lands from coast to coast: It’s because these spaces are uniquely American.
This Made in America Week, let’s unite with a common pride in our country, standing behind American businesses and engaging in American outdoor traditions that have stood the test of time.