The Arkansas Office of Outdoor Recreation works to leverage the state’s natural assets to grow the outdoor recreation economy.
Outdoor Recreation is a growing economic force for states and communities across the country. In Arkansas, this industry contributes $3.5 billion to the state’s gross domestic product (GDP), supports nearly 40,000 jobs and over $1.8 billion in salaries and wages.
In 2021, recognizing the significant contribution of outdoor products and recreation to Arkansas’s economy and quality of life, Gov. Asa Hutchinson created the Arkansas Office of Outdoor Recreation (AOOR).
AOOR’s goal is to further establish Arkansas as a top destination for outdoor recreation and to ensure outdoor businesses continue to thrive. The office provides a central point of contact, advocacy, and resources at the state level for the diverse constituents, businesses, and communities that rely on the continued health of the outdoor recreation economy. The office focuses on economic development, education and workforce training, conservation and stewardship, and public health and wellness, to ensure the state’s strategic growth as a place where outdoor businesses and recreation communities can flourish.
In addition to the natural resources that make Arkansas a great fit for outdoor recreation, Arkansas provides fertile soil for outdoor recreation companies. Our office refers businesses to market expansion services, international export advice, available incentives, business retention, innovation grants, product testing, patent support and more.
Supplementing that goal is AOOR’s Outdoor Recreation Grants Program, which works to enhance the overall quality of recreation resources through advocacy, research, technical assistance and grant funding. The program offers matching grants for city and county park acquisition and development.