Always moving forward to keep from falling behind

Marvin Bond

It’s said these days that if you’re not moving forward, you’re falling behind. That is certainly a commentary on the rapid changes we see all around us in nearly every aspect of our lives. The technology we use today changes so rapidly that even early adopters have trouble keeping up with the latest gizmo.

Customers now want to communicate with tablets and smart phones as much or more than desktops and laptops. And they not only want to communicate with each other that way, but they also want the option to receive information and publications that way.

After a lot of study of the tourism industry and our readers, Recreation News rolled out a new responsive design website (recreationnews.com) in late November. The site features all the content in the print edition, plus additional content and links to plenty of other information.

You’ll find an updated calendar of events, hot deals, tips from our travel experts, special pages for federal employees, and an archive of past issues.

You can search for content based on a state or season and check out family travel, food and beverage, or cultural opportunities. Hear my radio travel segments, sign up for our weekly opt-in eblast, or subscribe to the paper version. Search the calendar of events, or enter the monthly getaway contest.

And, you can view it all comfortably on most any device you happen to be using. Suffice it to say, none of these devices were around during most of my career, but now folks can’t seem to do without them.

Even the youngest among us seem to be “connected.” Our grandson, who’s not yet 2-1/2, seems to be able to figure things out on a tablet or e-reader that baffle us. When he starts talking in complete sentences, I hope to find out how he does it!

Is print dead?

With this in mind, there are those who routinely proclaim that print publications are dead, but recent studies at Virginia Tech and by the Vermont Tourism Office tell a different story.

The Virginia Tech study showed that people actually recalled receiving a printed publication more than an electronic one and had better recall of the contents. Even millennials preferred the time spent with a printed publication in hand, saying they considered it valuable “me” time.

The two-year Vermont study determined that, for vacation planning, friends and family remain the greatest influencers, but print publications were the second-most cited and were used more for planning and had greater influence than electronic communications and websites.

Those who commute on the Washington Metro and work in many facilities where public Internet isn’t available also find the print edition helpful.

All this is why Recreation News keeps investing in ways, both electronically and in print, to keep you informed so that you can make the best choices about how to spend that leisure time. If your world is moving too fast to enjoy leisure, then it’s time to make a New Year’s resolution to take the time off you’ve earned. You’ll be better off for it and your family will thank you, too.

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