A new survey by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources shows two-thirds of Iowans are spending more time outdoors than they did five years ago. D-N-R Recreation Planner Mark Warren says the favorite activities include hiking, picnicking, swimming, fishing and nature study.He says there wasn’t a lot of change in favorite activities from five years ago, people are just participating more than they did then. Warren says Iowans have one preference for the things they like to do, the survey shows they like to participate in activities that’re close to home. Warren says one-in-five Iowans surveyed felt they couldn’t get outside often enough due to lack of facilities.The survey showed many people feel there aren’t enough paved trails for biking in their area. Warren says respondents also cited a need for more hiking and nature trails, more lakes for boating and more places to fish. He says the survey is a valuable tool for the D-N-R.They will use the information in the survey in developing recreation areas. Warren says they’ll also take the survey to the State Capitol.The D-N-R hopes the survey will convince legislators and the governor to at least retain the current funding for parks and recreation areas. The University of Northern Iowa’s Center for Behavioral Research conducted the telephone survey. Users of 49 state parks were also surveyed.
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