|Ben Rankin, Erik Tilman, Kallia Briscoe, WA State Representative John Koster, George Winters, Preston Johnson. Photo by Kate Neville|
Two of our Board Members Joined the Washington Trails Association Hiker Rally Day
Wednesday February 15th was a busy day promoting the benefits and values of outdoor recreation at the Washington State Capitol in Olympia. Two of our board members joined the WTA contingent with organized visits to our district representatives. On the same day there was a huge tent set up next to the capitol provided by the Big Tent Outdoor Coalition. The big tent had information booths for many outdoor groups and agencies, and presentations by several state wide organizations promoting trails and active recreation.
We joined WTA because they were well organized to provide space, and material, and schedule visits to each of our representatives. It made sense to be there on a day of coordinated recreation interests. We saw several of our partner agency staff, and other CTCSC members and past board members who were rallying to the capitol for the same general goals and opportunity to get a short chance to bend the ear of our leaders.
The key issues of the day for WTA also align well with the advocacy goals of the CTCSC, promoting the funding of the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program, promoting No Child Left Inside, and advocating to fund more rigorous study of the health benefits of trails for the community.
WTA brought Erik and George together with other participants from the 39th district (assignment was based on our voting district) and so we were extra lucky to be joined by WTA youth ambassadors from Darrington High School. It is very likely that our group had the biggest showing of youth participants, and that surely is extra helpful in getting the attention of our busy legislators.
Senator Kirk Pearson, Rep. Dan Kristiansen, and Rep. John Koster each set aside some time to meet with our group. This is a busy time of the season and the biennial budgeting process for them, so we appreciate that opportunity to visit them in each of their Olympia offices.