Phil Gaines, Director of South Carolina State Parks, returns to the Park Leaders Show to follow up on his first interview.
In this second interview, Phil talks about the Ultimate Outside program. The Ultimate Outsider program turns visitors into insiders by getting them into all 47 State Parks in South Carolina. Phil Gaines knows once people get out to explore parks, they will make a connection. It is through connections that parks remain relevant in the lives of the citizens of the state.
When a citizen has a connection to a park, they will protect it, promote it, and continue to visit.
Phil also offers advice on how to keep your focus and remember why you work in parks when times are tough or you work with a park manager you do not get along with.
Just like connecting visitors to our parks, you need to reconnect with the reason why you work for parks. Get outside, do more of the parts of the job you love. As Phil says, “If you get paid in sunsets, and you are not taking in those sunsets, you are not getting your full check.”
Phil also reminds us that parks were built in hard times and this is when we do our best work.