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Group Works to Save the Oregon Dunes

Published: February 20, 2018

Restoring Oregon's Dunes: The bid to save a national treasure

Eugene, Ore. - Travel Lane County is a proud member of the Oregon Dunes Restoration Collaborative (ODRC). The ODRC has released a new book, Restoring Oregon’s Dunes: The bid to save a national treasureDeveloped as a coffee-table-style book, Restoring Oregon's Dunes tells the story of the coastal dunes that run from Florence to Coos Bay, their history, why they’re disappearing, and the partnership that has formed to try and save them.

Visitor spending is a major revenue source for Oregon's coastal economy. In fact, 2016 visitor spending in coastal Lane County tallied $136 million and supported 1,900 jobs. Florence continues to build a strong portfolio of visitor assets, including an exciting music and art scene, intriguing retail opportunities and top-notch food and beverage options. However, the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area continues to draw visitors by the hundreds of thousands.  Whether it's to stroll along the beach, ride a bike, horse or OHV on the dunes, or view wildlife, passing whales or a perfect sunset, our coastal dunes are a special place. But, we are losing the dunes at an alarming rate. Nonnative invasive plants have been rapidly stabilizing the dunes and altering natural geological and ecological processes. It is now thought that urgent action is needed to save the dunes.

Along with the release of the book, the group has also launched a website, SaveOregonDunes.org, to promote public awareness and involvement in dunes restoration. 

In 2014, the Siuslaw National Forest, which manages the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area, convened a group of stakeholders—recreation and tourism groups, environmental groups, tribal representatives, elected officials, community members, and federal, state, and county agencies—to develop a strategy for tackling dunes restoration.  That strategy, and the natural and cultural context on which it is based, is described along with stunning photography in Restoring Oregon’s Dunes. The companion website serves as a hub of information for people who would like to learn more or get involved in dunes restoration.

“The collaborative group has put significant energy into developing this restoration strategy,” said Jerry Ingersoll, Siuslaw National Forest Supervisor. “It’s exciting to see that work now documented in this beautiful book, and even more exciting to have it as a foundation for the decades-long project of restoring this special place.”

Dina Pavlis, Oregon Dunes Restoration Collaborative member and author of Secrets of the Dunes, explains, “The Oregon dunes are a special place for many of us. If we do nothing, they will be lost forever. That’s why I’ve been a part of this effort. I’m hoping this book will help others see that all of us, working together, is how we can save the dunes.”

Limited quantities of Restoring Oregon’s Dunes are available upon request through the Contact Us link at SaveOregonDunes.org, where a digital PDF of the book is also available. People interested in learning more are invited to visit with representatives of the Oregon Dunes Restoration Collaborative at a booth at the Florence Home and Garden Show March 2 – 4, 2018.  Additional events are listed on the website.

To learn more about the Oregon Dunes Restoration Collaborative, visit SaveOregonDunes.org. For photos and other collateral materials contact:

Lisa Romano, Forest Service, 541.750.7075, lmromano@fs.fed.us   
Andy Vobora, Oregon Dunes Restoration Collaborative, 541.743.8770, Andy@EugeneCascadesCoast.org

Author: Andy Vobora

Vice-President of Stakeholder Relations, Travel Lane County
541.743.8770; 800.547.5445

Andy@EugeneCascadesCoast.org

Travel Lane County markets and promotes the Eugene, Cascades and Coast region as a destination for travel, conventions, sports, meetings and events. It serves as a private, nonprofit association dedicated to economic development through visitor spending, which pumped more than $672 million into Lane County, Oregon's economy in 2016. EugeneCascadesCoast.org