Hi everyone!

For the last four months, I’ve been working for the National Recreation Fee Program for the Washington Office. Most of the work I have been doing has been assisting with communications and leading on organizational management to implement recommendations from a program evaluation on the fee program. This has improved some of my tech-y skills so far. However, from time to time, I do get to peek into other aspects of recreation, such as fee collection, point of service technology, and other procedures that help forest visitors recreate efficiently.

When I first started my position, I was told that a lot of recreation was about toilets…. I haven’t had the pleasure to work with those so far, but I have learned lots about fee machines! Recently, the Pacific Northwest Region put in an automated fee machine at the Sandy River Delta. Visitors were previously paying through their phones via a QR code that wasn’t very conspicuous. My boss was able to lead out on getting a fee machine installed in December, opening up an opportunity for me to go into the field, meet front liners, and see the machine get installed. I got a run down of all the maintenance and customization necessary for the machine to work properly and remain visitor friendly. What seems like something simple, has so many layers to it! I learned more about how much the Forest Service does to make visitors and user experience as easy as possible. Handfuls of visitors were already prepared to use the fee machine within the first hour since it’s installation.

We are hoping to make fee collection more digital agency wide so that we can keep recreation easy!

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