Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar today announced that the National Park Service will offer three fee-free weekends this summer to encourage Americans seeking affordable vacations to visit these national treasures. There are 391 national parks located across the country in 49 states.
“During these tough economic times, our national parks provide opportunities for affordable vacations for families,” Salazar said at a press conference at Cuyahoga Valley National Park. “I encourage everyone to visit one of our nation’s crown jewels this summer and especially to take advantage of the three free-admission weekends.”
“National Parks also serve as powerful economic engines for local communities and we hope that promoting visitation will give a small shot in the arm to businesses in the area,” he said.
The 147 National Park Service sites across the country that charge fees for entry will waive these entrance fees during the weekends of June 20-21, July 18-19, and August 15-16, 2009, Salazar said.
Meanwhile, many park partners including tour operators, hotels, restaurants, gift shops, and other vendors will offer additional discounts and special promotions on those dates. More information on the fees and discounts can be found at http://www.nps.gov/findapark/feefreeparks.htm
The national forests in the state of Florida that are now free on the promotion days are:
- Canaveral National Seashore-located on the east coast of Florida
- Castillo de San Marcos National Monument-located in downtown St. Augustine, on the east coast of Florida
- Dry Tortugas National Park-located 70 miles east of Key West,Florida
- Everglades National Park-located in South Florida
- Gulf Islands National Seashore-islands located near the Florida panhandle and southeast southern Mississippi