Request for Presentations for the Washington State Trails Coalition Conference

The Washington State Trails Coalition (WSTC) is excited to sponsor the 12th biennial Trails Conference at the Wenatchee Convention Center in Wenatchee, WA. Trail advocates, consultants, agency representatives, user groups, and recreation and transportation professionals will gather to share skills, insights, and resources, celebrate successes, and inspire new trail projects.

Trails can take us on some of our greatest journeys – whether across the neighborhood the state or the globe. Washington has some of the best trails in the country. On October 25-27, 2018, the Washington State Trails Conference will bring together the agencies, organizations, businesses, and people that make this possible as we are Leading the Way.

The conference’s Program Committee is now seeking presentation proposals consistent with our tracks. To encourage a broad range of perspectives, special consideration will be given to proposals that include: 1) presentations which may not have been associated with trails in the past, such as health, education, conservation or transportation, or 2) voices of people who have been traditionally underrepresented in trail projects, such as youth, people of color, individuals with disabilities, or veterans.

The conference will offer breakout sessions along four themed tracks:

Shared Trails, Shared Advocacy: Exploring how collaboration between trail user groups can create a stronger trail system in Washington. Topics could include: collaborative trail planning, trail building and maintenance, user education, leveraged funding, advocacy coalitions, and more.

Inclusivity, Diversity, and Access: Strategies, proven or emerging, for fostering an inclusive community, where new generations of trail users feel welcome and enjoy trails in ways that honor their history and identities (including but not limited to race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, disability, or income). Can also look at solutions to common barriers that prevent some people from enjoying trails, from transit to trailheads to improving our recreation fee systems.

Public Lands – Multiple Uses & Balancing Values: From preservation to resource extraction, solitude to high-use, or active to passive transportation – what we expect of our public lands is influenced by our value judgments. Case studies and strategies that support multiple uses and that balance seemingly contradictory values through the lens of trails.
Managing for Change:Change is possibly the only constant in trails. Tactics and success stories for adapting to changing conditions: demographics, population, climate, funding, regulations, access controversies, and user conflicts.

Bonus Trails Spotlight: Showcasing trails that provide unique values and experiences for the public or that offer significant learning opportunities.

Length of Presentation: Time slots will be 60 minutes which includes a recommended 10-15 minutes for Q&A.

Off Site Session or Field Trip: There may be opportunities for a very small number of field trips during the conference. Contact WSTC directly if you wish to propose a session to highlight a unique local trail, issue, or process.

Submitting a Proposal: Our selection committee will consider general interest proposals, but proposals that best align with one of the track themes will be given priority. It is important that conference proposals have a nexus with trails, whether urban or backcountry, public or private, recreation or transportation.

Submissions: Complete the 2018 Proposal Form and email a Word or PDF file to proposals@washingtonstatetrailscoalition.org by May 15, 2018.

Review and selection: The Program Committee will select proposals on the basis of topic relevance, appeal to a spectrum of attendees and quality of proposal. The committee aims to respond to applicants with final program selections by June 15, 2018.

Registration policy: Conference organizers work to keep overall registration and meal costs low in part by asking all presenters to pay the full registration fee and their other expenses. However, speakers who wish to attend only their session and a session immediately following or preceding their presentation, not including a meal, may request a waiver of this policy. Thank you for understanding.

View the conference website: http://washingtonstatetrailscoalition.org/conferences/2018-conference/