The human dimensions literature challenges the notion that settings are simply features and attributes that can be manipulated to satisfy public demand; instead, people view specific recreation settings as unique kinds of places. Land managers provide recreation experience opportunities, but most conventional management frameworks do not allow managers to address the personal attachment of people to places. This study examined the relationships among activity participation, recreation experience preferences (REP), and setting and place attachment. Study data was obtained from a visitor study conducted in 2000-2001 at U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Waterfowl Production Areas in Minnesota. We used structural equation modeling to explore whether recreation experience preferences mediate the relationship between types and frequencies of recreation participation and place attachment at Minnesota's Waterfowl Production Areas. Results offer empirical evidence that recreational experience preferences associated with activity participation may be instrumental to one's development of place attachment to a recreation site. Thus, research in these two areas may be more complementary than has been apparent in the literature.
- Place attachment
- Recreation experience preferences
- Structural equation modeling
- Wildlife recreation