Week 1. In 3-5 years you'll have confidence the state is on the right path in spending the Legacy Funds if:
We heard from Minnesotans that they want the legacy funds (millions of dollars in state sales tax revenue Minnesotans voted for in 2008) to build something big and lasting. If we do that, what milestones will we reach as a state that show we’re on the right path? (choose 1)
- We will have identified and started working on a few big projects (a project might be a new park)
- Projects that reflect each regionís unique needs will be underway
- The quality of experiences with parks and trails will have improved (good maintenance of facilities, relevant programming, etc.)
- Many more people will be using parks and trails
- Other (tell us your answer in the comment section after you submit your survey)
Now that you've taken the poll, please share your deeper insights in the discussion below! Your poll response is a start, but your detailed thinking will have a far greater impact. We’ll take quotes from your answers here for the final report that will go to the legislature. Please use the poll answers to get your thoughts moving, but don’t let them limit you! All insights are valid and useful.
In 3-5 years you'll have confidence the state is on the right path in spending the Legacy Funds if:
A major milestone will be when we can isolate and recognize specific accomplishments by members of the community that could only have sprung from a park. Such as a health & wellness program run through a park, or focused around such a park, with a high public involvement and participation rate.
A definite milestaone that will show the state is on the right path will be an increase in efforts by the state to encourage state land use by all types of outdoor enthusiasts including motorized users. Motorized use is one of the few areas of public land use that is growing and should be explored as a means of increasing state land use.
I believe that if the state was on the right path there would be an increase in people in the parks as well as a very good quality experience for everyone who would be using the parks. the increase of quality would show that we were on the right track in maintaining the park systems.
I'll see that the state is on the right path if there are more people going out and getting active. If communities are actively enjoying what we have.
An extension of the biking trails alongside roads would be a great improvement. Oftentimes I've been biking somewhere and then I had to bike on the shoulder of the road because the trail ended. It feels uncomfortable and dangerous to be so close to car traffic.
What always interested me was the Parks And Recreation Programs and how they really introduced children to the beneficial aspects of a stronger connectivity with parks and other natural settings. When I was younger, I participated every summer in the Summer in the Park Program sponsored by the Parks and Rec Program. I felt that through that program, I was really able to appreciate the parks and surrounding natural experiences that I came into contact with everyday. Through nature walks in the woods or fishing by the lake, this program got me outside when I was a kid and really stimulated my interest in increasing my time outdoors. I feel that programs like these are very helpful and that they should be continued in the future in order to attract more people to parks.
there are usable facilities, the trails are well kept, groups are taken there to learn or experience something new, for example a biking class or SES students learning different vegetation species. it all comes down to whether or not the people are happy, do they like the parks and trails? do they enjoy going there?
More people are using the paths and parks and enjoying them for the simplistic atomasphere that it brings. It will show people that materialistc good are not needed for happieness and relaxation.
Kim- Along the lines of fitness, would it be possible for the parks to have organized hiking, running, biking, or walking groups throughout the year? A lot of gyms (that cost a fair amount of money) have fitness programs or groups you can participate in which draw groups of friends in hope of getting in shape. I think if there was something similar that was organized like that at the parks all year round (that is more affordable) it could potentially draw in those same groups of people.
I agree that fitness is important, but I feel like Minnesota has quite a few trails to provide the opportunity-- it's more a matter of who knows about them. Hosting an event to promote using the trails we already have would be a really great idea. I know personally, I never knew about the bike trails in Lebannon Hills until I heard about them at school.
One of the big selling points of going to the parks and trails rather than a gym would be the asthetic prospect.. I mean.. think about it, who wants to walk on a treadmill and see a bunch of other people on treadmills when you could go out and walk on trails and see birds and butterflies, experience autumn rather than just driving past as the leaves fall.
I think winter is a time when people try to escape the parks and trails because of the cold, it'd be interesting if there would be a way to attract more people during the snowy months.