31 July 2010

Proceedings of the 2000 Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium

About time eh? Well click on the title link to see papers like:

Constraints and benefits of changing the distribution process for recreation special use permits in the U.S. Meybin, Jessie; Burns, Robert; Graefe, Alan; Absher, James D.

Changes in national park visitation (2000-2008) and interest in outdoor activities (1993-2008). Warnick, Rodney B.; Schuett, Michael A.; Kuentzel, Walt; More, Thomas A.

Recreation trails in Maine and New Hampshire: A comparison of motorized, non-motorized, and non-mechanized trails. Wilkerson, Ethel; Whitman, Andrew.

Experiences of campers and campsite impacts in the St. Regis Canoe Area Wilderness. Dawson, Chad P.; Schuster, Rudy M.; Propst, Blake M.; Black, Corenne.

NERR. Always a good source of recreation research!

27 July 2010

Do you shop for art and crafts while travelling?

I think it is important to support the local artist.

I don't mean visiting shops to buy t-shirts and junk made in China (unless you are in China). I mean supporting local artist who paint, do pottery, carve wood and so on.

Here is an artisan at WassiArt Pottery Works, who can throw a pot like a pro.

Good place to visit when in Ocho Rios.

25 July 2010

Summer Road Trips

I think I have finally recovered from our roadtrip to Maryland this past week. After a 10 hour day on Thursday (including stops) I have to rant a bit about improper driving techniques...of others.

Say you are on an US Interstate highway that has three lanes. The outside lane is for slow vehicles and for those who want to exit or enter the road. The middle lane is called the travel lane, where theoretically, drivers are doing the speed limit. Finally the inside lane is for passing. I repeat that passing. Not travel, not slow, but actually a slight faster pace to pass those in the travel lane.

Typically what happens is some driver will get in this lane and just do the speed limit. For those who travel a bit faster, the only way to get ahead of this person is to pass on the right. (I'm talking American or non-British style of driving)

So please folks, if you can drive safely at the speed limit, travel in the travel lane. If you must pass, do so, and get back over to the right!

For some interesting facts about highways, check out the wikipedia page at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Highway

24 July 2010

a Belated Congrats to our graduates

Yeah, I know...graduation was two months ago. But since I got a 60 gig card in my camera, I don't download the pictures often enough.

Congratulations to members of the Class of 2010 at Westfield State.

Our major is in Regional Planning and we are in the Department of Geography and Regional Planning.

23 July 2010

stress and air flying

One thing I notice is that I get to read USA Today when I travel. The hotels dump a copy at my door every morning and I get a sound byte of news.

Yesterday was no different while I was in Easton Maryland. One article that caught my attention was about rudeness on airplane flights. See http://www.usatoday.com/travel/flights/2010-07-22-airplaneetiquette22_CV_N.htm for the fun details.

I have to admit that I get annoyed by crying babies and folks jamming their seat back into my lap. The whole experience is frustrating. I do try to remain calm. After all, the paranoia in the States has meant that some poor TSA employee gets to smell my shoes.

Since airlines are nickel and diming (sp?) us to make payroll, the planes are smaller and full, fewer routes are available, we are at the mercy of the airlines.

So, stay calm, get to the airport in plenty of time, bring a book to read and enjoy the flight!

21 July 2010

Growth of Travel and Tourism Spending Outpaced the Growth of U.S. Economy

A report from the Office of Travel & Tourism Industries (OTTI):

Growth of Travel and Tourism Spending Outpaced the Growth of U.S. Economy

See the press release at:

Now, there are crabs to steam and eat....

19 July 2010

Rainy Day Recreation

So I am a wimp sometimes. I used to go outside in any kind of weather. In fact, the wetter, the colder, the better. Ok, maybe not the wet stuff.

And summertime meant prime backpacking time. Now I prefer to hit the trails in the fall, when the temperatures are milder and there are NO bugs!

Anyway, the purpose of this particular blog is to highlight the Classic entertainment available today on Turner CLASSICS Movies (TCM).

Where else can you wake up to The Manster, followed by The Killer Shrews. Too bad I am doing a road trip today. (I got these films on DVD besides).

You might want to catch The Green Slime at noon Eastern. This one I have on 16mm!

18 July 2010

hmmmm Crabs!

A road trip this week to my old stomping grounds will take me to Blue Crab country....Maryland's Eastern Shore. There I will indulge in sea food and then some more sea food.

I sure do like the crab cakes at this place in Cambridge! Maybe I'll get a dozen steam crabs too!

Water quality in the Chesapeake has improved tremendously since the eighties.

13 July 2010

Outdoor Recreation Research page by Yu-Fai Leung

Always been a fan of this links page managed by Yu-Fai Leung. He needs to update them a bit, but still a valuable resource for recreation geography. See http://www4.ncsu.edu/~leung/recres1.html for an example.

Check it out for some great information. After all, that is what the Internet is all about (that and the hokey pokey).

11 July 2010

Final Day of the World Cup

The world has had their eyes and ears glued to media about the World Cup. Besides the Olympics it is truly a world event.

The World Series in the States is not even close.

Once the games are over, visit one of your local youth sporting events and cheer the kids on.

07 July 2010

It's not the heat, it is the humidity

We left dinner last night about 7PM and our car's thermometer registered 108 degrees F! And we were in the shade.

Once we left the parking lot, the temperatures cooled to 104.

My wife and I have a game we play as we drive home. We try to guess what the temperature might be at the "farmhouse". Topographically, we are located in a small creek valley and it is fairly wooded (except for our neighbors to the west that clear cut their backyard). It is typically 4 degrees cooler at our house compared to downtown Westfield.

I've written about urban heat islands and everything we noticed yesterday points to this. Urban temperatures (and other built up environments) are warmer.

I'm going to plant some more trees!

06 July 2010

Got your cloth bag for shopping?

It started about a decade ago. I was attending the Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers in Pittsburgh, PA and after paying a couple of hundred bucks for registration six months earlier, I arrived at the conference to pick up my registration supplies. Instead a a nice shoulder bag made of nylon, we all got a canvas tote bag with the book of abstracts and miscellaneous materials about the conference.

Ten years later I am using that bag and others on a daily basis. The "nicer" should bags carry my school notes for a class while the cheaper cloth bags are kept in the cars to use when I shop at the grocery, pharmacy, hardware, farmers market and so on.

I can put the bags in the laundry to clean them and they are just great!

Do you carry cloth bags for shopping?

05 July 2010

New Fiscal Year and Recreation Budgets

Typically new fiscal year budgets start 1 July of each year. Now typical is that it really starts a few days later so not to rush our hasty exit for a three day weekend.

Anyway, if your budget is like ours, you know you have to do more with less. That reminds me of the idea proposed by The President's Commission on Americans Outdoors and the idea that Partnerships are a way to do more with less. (you can pick up a copy of this book on Amazon for US$0.01, see http://www.amazon.com/Americans-outdoors-challenge-Presidents-Commission/dp/093328036X/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1278335142&sr=8-2). It doesn't have to be a Coke sponsorship of your park, after all they don't really need the income (see the impact that Coke has on the World Cup when local vendors are given the boot).

But instead I'd like to (re)propose the idea of Friend's Groups. You know the Friends of (fill in your park). These groups of volunteers can help with the maintenance, upkeep and even the management of your park.

Think your park is too big for this? Well remember the Appalachian Trail is essentially managed by volunteers.

04 July 2010

Guilty Pleasures on Fourth of July

I will admit that I do love fireworks. I mean, it is such a big part of our American culture. But my guilty pleasure is threatened by the fact that people in this world deal with "fireworks" on a daily basis.

That is, a war.

I realize we are celebrating something here in the States, but for many people, the sound of explosives mean something else. After all fireworks ARE explosive devices.

But today, let's all band to end war, so fireworks can be thought of as entertainment, instead of an implement of war.

01 July 2010

Happy Dogs at Brindle's 4th Birthday Party

Long lost footage from Brindle's Fourth Birthday party at the Bar-S Ranch back in July 1983.


Now, what better reason for a party? Celebrating a Birthday, even a four legged one.