Connecting Communities with Motorized Trails

The Southwest Wyoming Off-Road Trails (SWOT) Project

This webinar will detail the journey of the SWOT Project to connect Wyoming communities with motorized trails.

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Event Details

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June 08, 2023

10:00 AM to 11:30 AM (Pacific Time) {more time zones}

11:00 AM to 12:30 PM (Mountain Time)
12:00 PM to 01:30 PM (Central Time)
01:00 PM to 02:30 PM (Eastern Time)

Cost (RECORDING):

FREE for members
FREE for nonmembers

Learning Credit Cost: FREE

Note:

Closed Captioning is available for this webinar.
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are available for this webinar.

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Webinar Outline


In the presentation the presenter will detail the journey of the SWOT Project to connect Wyoming communities with motorized trails up to this point. From the inception of the project at a presentation to the local economic development group to the passage of 2 bills at the 2023 legislative session. They will talk about the stakeholders we've brought to the table from BLM, Forest Service, WYDOT and State Trails and Outdoor Rec Office and many others I'll speak about our first attempt at a bill in 2022 and the way I got Governor Mark Gordon involved. The presenter will also speak about our ongoing battle with the Fossil Butte National Monument to allow OHVs into the park on established roads. They will also talk about their next project to get a state park established outside of Mountain View, WY.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn the importance of projects being grass-roots projects
  • Understand why persistence and persuasion are crucial to any project goals
  • Realize the important of having a strategy I order to meet your goals

information

This webinar qualifies as a Health, Safety, and Welfare (HSW) course (via LA CES).


Webinar Resources


  • SWOT video
  • SWOT Facebook
  • SWOT YouTube
  •  


    Webinar Partners



    Presenter


    Mark Tesoro, President, Southwest Wyoming Off-Road Trails (SWOT)
    Evanston, Wyoming

    Mark is the President of the Southwest Wyoming Off-road Trails (SWOT) as well as on the Wyoming Office of Tourism Board of Directors. In the fall of 2019, the publisher of several small-town newspapers in southwest Wyoming took an idea to the county economic development commission. The idea was to connect the communities of the region with a series of off-road motorized trails. The commission liked the idea and asked that a working group be put together. Little did the publisher know that the project would become the biggest recreation based economic development project for the state of Wyoming in decades.

    That newspaperman, Mark Tesoro has been in Evanston since he was two. The small town of Evanston is just over an hour from Salt Lake City on I-80. After graduating from Evanston High School in 1988 he attended Saint Louis University on a swimming scholarship. He spent a couple of years with his wife after they graduated teaching English in Japan and when they returned to the states, his wife began teaching elementary school. Mark found work in several jobs over the years in radio, retail hardware and managing a snowmobile lodge in the nearby Uinta Mountains.

    He eventually landed a sales position at the Uinta County Herald in 2002. By 2013 he had worked his way up to Group Publisher of 5 newspapers in the region. Mark oversaw 35 employees and all aspects of the company from printing to publication and sales to circulation. Tesoro left the newspapers in February.

    As an avid outdoorsman, Mark and his wife and two kids enjoy hunting, fishing, hiking, camping and mountain biking. After many trips to southern Utah and seeing the substantial economic impact from motorized recreation for the communities, Mark put together a short presentation to show economic leaders in Evanston. He was pushed to put together a working group to explore the possibility of expanding motorized trails. The project was called Southwest Wyoming Off-road Trails (SWOT).

    By partnering with the Wyoming State Trails Office, Outdoor Rec Office and WYDOT, the SWOT project eventually passed 2 bills through the 2023 State Legislative Session. SWOT created a 501c3 nonprofit board and Mark became president of the board in 2021. Many stakeholders have been at the table with the project including BLM, Forest Service, city councils and county commissioners, chambers of commerce, game and fish, law enforcement, wildlife advocacy groups, landowners, legislators, business and industry.

    Nearly 300 of miles of trail, predominantly county roads have been enrolled into the state’s OHV trail system. The potential of thousands of miles of trail across Wyoming is on the horizon.

    8 towns or cities have enrolled all or portions of their city streets into the state’s trail program. Wy State Parks have said they would like to see dirt trails from one border of the state to the other.

    In February of 2022, Governor Mark Gordon appointed Mark to the Wyoming Office of Tourism Board of Directors. The board oversees a $40 million budget. The potential to open up Wyoming for motorized trails is tremendous. The vast amount of public land and plethora of county roads connecting communities lends to the amazing possibilities of the SWOT Project.

    Although the project is primarily for OHV’s and ATV’s, Mark doesn’t own one. He does have a dual-sport motorcycle which he rides on the county roads every chance he gets.

     


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    Learning Credits and CEUs

    American Trails is proud to be a certified provider of the following learning credits and continuing education opportunities:

    • American Institute of Certified Planners Continuing Maintenance (AICP CM)
    • Landscape Architecture Continuing Education System (LA CES PDH) (most HSW approved)
    • National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) CEU equivalency petition
    • CEU/PDH equivalency petition for other accepting organizations

    Learning credits are free for attendees for American Trails webinars and the International Trails Symposium, as well as for other conferences, webinars, and workshops we offer credits for. Learn more here.


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    957 views • posted 05/15/2023