by: contributed photo A hands-on workshop Feb. 15 will center on bicycling tourism in the Mount Hood area.

Between the inaugural Barlow Road Ride scheduled for late August and the increasingly popular Sandy Ridge Trail System, the Mount Hood area is ripe for bicycling tourism.

And what better way to strengthen the local economy?

Anyone with a personal or professional interest in bicycle tourism is encouraged to attend a community-based planning program that aims to put Clackamas County communities on the map as bicycle-friendly destinations.

Travel Oregon and Clackamas County Tourism and Cultural Affairs will hold a Bicycle Tourism Studio for the Villages of Mt. Hood and Government Camp from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 15, at Huckleberry Inn, 88611 Business Loop and Highway 26, Government Camp.

The Government Camp studio is part of a series of development workshops and events running through March 2012 in Clackamas County.

At the studio, participants will learn about how:

• Oregon has identified cycling tourism as a key economic development strategy;

• 1.3 million visitors bicycled in Oregon in 2009;

• Cycling visitors spent $223 million primarily on lodging, meals and retail; and,

• The community can grow economically by providing for cycling travelers.

The goal is to create key connections among organizations and focus community energy on developing cycling infrastructure, business services and marketing activities.

Kristin Dahl of Travel Oregon and Scott Bricker of Bricker Consulting will lead the Feb. 15 workshop, which is limited to 35 participants.

Registration is $5 and includes lunch. For more information, visit the tourism development section within From there, scroll to the Oregon Rural Tourism Studio, and then Clackamas County in the far right gold box.

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