Outdoor Economy Conference

Cullowhee, NC - October 5th, 2018

WCU's inaugural Outdoor Economy Conference is the region's premier outdoor industry and networking event to support businesses and entrepreneurs. Our keynote speaker, Pete Ripmaster, will share his experiences. After running 50 marathons in 50 states, Pete's interest shifted to ultra-marathons, setting his sights on the longest and most brutal ultra-marathon in the world- the Iditarod Trail Invitational (ITI) Foot 1000. After a near-death experience during the 2016 ITI Foot 1000, he vowed to return to Alaska and conquer the race which he did in 2018. Ripmaster represents the power and face of the outdoor economy.

This conference has a lot to offer to businesses and start-ups. Plan on attending to hear from leaders in the region's outdoor industry, engage in panel discussions and explore the latest trends. Don't miss out! This is a great opportunity to collaborate, network, and promote your ideas, resources, and services.

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 Backpackers on a trail

Our one-day conference in the beautiful mountains of Western NC is packed with speakers, industry leaders, and innovators who will share their experience and insight with you.


Speakers & Agenda


Explore the full schedule and the bios for the Outdoor Economy Conference. See our breakout sessions and panel discussions to choose which ones you want to attend.

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The future of the outdoor industry in the Southern Appalachian region is within your reach. Gain brand exposure, connect with businesses and build your brand by becoming a part of the Outdoor Economy Conference.

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