State Parks to Review System, Recreation Programs

By Beacon Staff

The state’s department in charge of managing and maintaining public parks is preparing to launch a year-long process addressing challenges related to resources and system capacity and gaining insight on the public’s interests in services and recreation needs.

Montana State Parks is inviting the public to participate in focus groups as part of a strategic planning process. There will be eight focus groups around the state starting April 21 through May 1. A public meeting will be held in Kalispell at 4 p.m., April 28, at Lone Pine State Park, 300 Lone Pine Rd. The other groups will meet in Glasgow, Glendive, Billings, Lolo, Whitehall, Helena and Ulm.

The strategic planning process will take a year to complete and will result in an updated vision for the Montana State Parks’ system and recreation programs for the next decade. There will be a public comment process on the draft strategic plan, later this year.

The most recent strategic plan was created in 1998.

The public meetings will provide an opportunity for participants to learn about the current status of the state parks system and provide feedback on challenges and opportunities, including: what makes a state park significant?; what services are needed for the future?; and how does the state parks’ system sustain adequate resources to handle demands?

Each focus group will last about three hours and refreshments will be provided. The public is encouraged to RSVP by calling the Montana State Parks Helena office at (406) 444-3750.

RELATED: State Parks Agency Drafts New Vision

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