The National Park Hospitality Association invites you to participate in the
2019 ANNUAL MEETING:
Improving Park Visitor Experiences
March 18-20, 2019
Intercontinental Washington at the Wharf
801 Wharf St. SW, Washington, D.C. 20024
Click here for a meeting overview
Click here for a registration form
National parks, park visitors and the nation’s park concessioners will be the focus of key conversations between March 18 and 20, 2019, in the Nation’s Capital. You need to take part in these discussions.
Change is happening – changes that can open doors to new opportunities for park visitors or limit interest and excitement about our parks. These changes can also enhance or undermine the long-standing, trusted role of park concessioners in supporting great experiences in great places for generations of Americans and visitors from beyond our borders.
This year alone, these important changes have occurred:
● A partial government shutdown lasting 35 days, with varying impacts on national park units and a mix of stories of partners rising to overcome challenges and of illegal acts;
● Leadership change at Interior and the National Park Service, with the resignation of a powerful Secretary and more than two years without a confirmed Director;
● Attention, finally, to a wonderful park system with very big financial challenges too large to ignore and institutional resistance to changes key to remaining relevant over the next 100 years; and
● Interruption of national coordination by core park partners and the agency – NPHA, NPCA, PLA, NPF and more – even as each of these partners has achieved important successes.
The 2019 Annual Meeting of the National Park Hospitality Association will address these challenges as well as the very real opportunities to keep our national parks beloved and engines of sustainable economic vitality. The meeting – Improving Park Visitor Experiences – is built around a theme that unites major park proponents. And during conversations and frank exchanges, concessioners and NPS leaders and Congressional representatives and national park proponents will discuss and embrace ideas to make the future of our National Park System bright.
We’ll share observations about the most recent shutdown and prior shutdowns … notably the fall of 2013 shutdown. We’ll look for agreement among key park organizations on what we learned and how we can better inoculate America’s national parks against political disagreements having very little to do with these special places.
We’ll spend time learning to better tell concessioner stories of protecting park resources and aiding park visitors – about our efforts with service and conservation corps, guest donation programs and our investments of hundreds of millions of dollars in key infrastructure.
We’ll engage in discussions to speed concession program improvements – applauding recent and important steps taken by the agency and assessing clear interest in the subject in the Congress.
We’ll hear more about the importance of recreation and tourism in the 21st Century economy and how our efforts aid bipartisan goals ranging from resilient rural communities to telling important stories of our nation.
We’ll hear more about key federal nominees like David Bernhardt and their goals and visions – and the prospects of key legislative initiatives like the Restore Our Parks Act and the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act.
We’ll hear from old and new associate members – from trusted legal minds and consultants and new allies with exciting visions and capabilities to attract visitors to both our best-known parks and those too often left in the shadows.
In addition to panels featuring the leaders of NPCA, NPF, PLA and more, we’ll have frank, future-focused discussions with NPS Commercial Services staffers and key field officials in general sessions and at discussion tables over lunch on topics including Evaluations, Better Campgrounds, Strategies for Overcoming Key Maintenance Backlog Items, Broadband and Related IT Topics, Prospectuses of Tomorrow, Expanded Use of Conservation and Service Corps and Serving Visitors Better in Our Forgotten Parks – places with low and declining visitation.
We’ll discuss our past joint research with NPCA and recent marketing successes of KOA and Airstream, the growth of visits to ski areas during the non-winter period and strategies for alliances with the corporate leaders of the 21st Century – Amazon and Microsoft and more.
You will be one of the storytellers at our meeting. So, don’t delay. Register and reserve your room today. You MUST reserve your room in our block by Monday, February 18.