Call for Proposals

CampingCon 2024 will examine public outdoor spaces as educational arenas and the evolving concept of wilderness in history and public consciousness. Considering the unique setting, presentations should be low-tech and make creative use of the location. Topics to consider, but not limited to, include:

  • the efforts to define public outdoors spaces and determine their appropriate uses
  • the use of Leopold’s “Land Ethic” in public history
  • the development of educational programing in public outdoor spaces
  • the intersection of public history and indigenous land use, culture, history, and ways of knowing
  • the promotion of outdoor recreation among underserved/underrepresented populations 
  • the creation of diverse partnerships required for outdoor public history projects
  • the built environment amid outdoor leisure spaces
  • the place of public history in outdoor recreation development and tourism
  • the interpretation of despoiled landscapes through extractive industries and public policy
  • the assessment of interpretive methods, visitor experiences, and/or constituent engagement efforts

It is appropriate for proposals to use creative ways and alternative presentation styles for the setting.  That is, we encourage presenters to think of ways to incorporate the location as an active participant in their proposal. This can include research presented as walk-and-talks along nearby trails; tours of the Gila Forest and Gila Wilderness as features from unique ideological and historical perspectives; structured conversations and campfire stories, or the traditional panel adapted to an outdoor setting.  Proposals may consider the Gila landscape as proxy for their interactive presentations. If necessary, presenters should rely on printed handouts rather than WIFI or multimedia projectors to show PowerPoint slides and AV clips—this is a low-tech gathering.

While proposals do not have to directly deal with the Gila Wilderness, there are many potential subjects to consider including the Gila Wilderness/Aldo Leopold Wilderness, the Continental Divide Trail, the Gila River and Mimbres River watersheds, Mimbres/Mogollon Culture, the Chiricahua Apache Tribe, the U.S.-Mexico borderlands, and mining and ranching.

To submit a proposal, send the following information to [email protected] by 11:59 p.m. on June 1, 2024:

  • Presenter name, email, phone, and institutional affiliation (if any)
  • Title of presentation
  • A 200-word description