For those of you trying to quantify the contribution of the outdoor economy to your community leaders in order to make quality of life upgrades (e.g. water parks, trails, etc.) here is some good fodder from a report released at OR.
Importance of outdoor industry: The study's figures were broken down even further into nine separate regions across the United States. Region 8, which includes the states of Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, New Mexico, Montana, Utah, Nevada and Wyoming, ranked near the top with $61 billion in annual economic contribution from the active-outdoor-recreation industry.
More Americans paddle (kayak, canoe and raft) than play soccer.
The active outdoor recreation economy employs five times more Americans than Wal-Mart, the world's largest private employer.