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May 23, 2007

America Outdoors E-News

Maine Companies Battling for Road Access Worst Wildfires in Decades Hit Gunflint Trail and Boundary Waters Outfitters
North Carolina Whitewater Liability Statute Introduced New Exhibitors for AO's International Marketing and Management Conference
AO Member Benefits America Outdoors Members Save on QuickBooks Products
Maine Companies Battling for Road Access
  The rivers in the Northern Maine forests are in a vast, largely unpopulated area which was once owned by a handful of large timber companies. As timber harvesting waned and the companies moved their operations to the South where trees grow faster on managed tree farms, new owners have purchased tracks of the north Maine woods. Historically, the timber companies allowed access along their road system. Some of the new landowners have restricted access to sportsmen and outfitters. In the case of the Dead River, the landowners are charging steep fees to commercial rafting companies for road use.

One outfitter quoted in a recent Kennebec Journal article said, "We are just being squeezed from too many different directions. We are pricing ourselves out of the market." Two different companies own the access road to the Dead River and charge $10.50 per person and the state gets another $1.00. The road was even closed abruptly this spring just before a busy weekend.

The state says the issues facing outfitters are real and that access is an issue for sportsman, as well as outfitters. To resolve the problem an easement could be obtained by the state and the groups are talking, but little progress has been made recently. "When you are looking at the big picture, you have seen six million acres in Maine change hands in the last five years," said Patrick McGowan, Commissioner of Conservation.

Access to the Kennebec is fine for now and outfitters have developed a good working relationship with Florida Power and Light, which owns the hydro project, according AO board member Suzie Hockmeyer. But the road to the project is owned by several different people and even that access could become complicated in the future.

Worst Wildfires in Decades Hit Gunflint Trail and Boundary Waters Outfitters
  Despite recent rains the forest fire plaguing the Boundary Waters area in northern Minnesota continues to burn. Several outfitters have lost buildings, equipment and other property to the disaster as the fire ripped through populated areas in the region, changing directions several times. To read a recent story go to http://www.startribune.com/462/story/1167714.html.
North Carolina Whitewater Liability Statute Introduced
  A new whitewater liability statute has been introduced in the North Carolina legislature. The bill waives claims to the inherent risk of the activity. A copy of the bill can be found on the AmericaOutdoors.org site in the Member Benefits - Risk Management section.
New Exhibitors for AO's International Marketing and Management Conference
  The 2007 America Outdoors Confluence trade show will offer a diverse array of manufacturers and suppliers to the outfitting industry.
Some of the companies displaying for the first time at Confluence are: Creative Bus Sales, Inc. of Chino, CA, Gillingham & Associates of Westminster, CO, Innovative Retail Partners, Inc.of Greenwood, IN, Mountain Shades, Inc. of Edgewater, CO, Ram Offset Lithographers, LLC of White City, OR, Sports Accessories America of Wheat Ridge, CO.
Click here for a full list of exhibitors. Check back for updates to the list.

In 2007 - AO's International Marketing and Management Conference will feature:
  • New Strategies in Sales and Marketing, Risk Management, Business Management, and Government Affairs
  • The Operations Network: Peer led discussion groups with real-world issues and solutions for your business operation.
  • BLM, FS, & NPS Regulation Workshops
  • The Outfitter Expo Trade Show and International Bazaar
The America Outdoors' Marketing and Management Conference will be in Reno December 5-8 at the Silver Legacy Resort. Make plans now to be with us in Reno for Confluence 2007. Call 800-524-4814, or click here for information.
America Outdoors Members Save on QuickBooks Products
  Get 20 % Off QuickBooks Products + Free Shipping

America Outdoors members can save on QuickBooks Software through our partnership. The easiest way to help your business succeed! See benefit number 8 on the America Outdoors Member Resources page. A variety of products including the updated QuickBooks 2007 are available at discounts through the AO website.
AO Member Benefits
  Take advantage of your America Outdoors Member Benefits. Click here for a list of benefits and call the America Outdoors office 800-524-4814 with questions.
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America Outdoors® Inc., PO Box 10847, Knoxville, TN, 37939

America Outdoors Staff Title E-mail address
David L. Brown Executive Director dbrown@americaoutdoors.org
Robin Brown Communications Director robin@americaoutdoors.org
Office Phone 865-558-3595
Office Fax 865-558-3598

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