As far as state parks are concerned, being boring shouldn’t always necessarily be seen as a bad thing.
It could, for instance, mean being somewhere with little to do other than contemplate one’s place in the natural world. Or, it could mean having an opportunity to reflect quietly on past events at one historic spot or another. In both instances, there’s little evidence of activity, but that doesn’t mean that people engaging in those pursuits are bored. They might, in fact, be seeking just the peace they can find in those places.
That’s why it’s just a little troubling to hear, according to a Morris News Service report, that officials with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources have bought into a consultant’s assessment that the state’s parks are boring and have “drafted a plan for adding pizzazz” to the network of 64 campgrounds, golf courses and historic homes.
Sure, there’s a need to, for lack of a better term, bring some “pizzazz” to the parks. The DNR is working “to generate money to replace the 43 percent of annual appropriations cut by the legislature.”
In response, the DNR’s goal “is for each facility to generate at least 75 percent of what it takes to operate.” The good news is that parks with lodges already generate 91 percent of needed operating revenues, and state golf courses generate revenue equaling 71 percent of needed operating revenue. Even better news is that some parks generate a profit.
The bad news — or, to be fair, the potentially bad news — is that a significant part of the DNR’s strategy for moving closer to across-the-board self-funding “requires construction of new lodges, camp stores and gift shops.” We hope the DNR will think through those projects to ensure that they don’t have any overwhelmingly negative effects on the ability of people to come to the parks to experience the natural world. Sometimes, “boring” can be good.
— Online: www.onlineathens.com