After Record Flooding, State Parks On Lake Champlain Now Open

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(Host) State parks all around Vermont are busy for the long Independence Day weekend. As VPR’s Nina Keck reports, all 52 parks in the state’s system are open.

(Keck) Craig Whipple is director of Vermont’s State Parks. He says that while flooding this spring closed six state parks, all are now open, including the state’s busiest.

(Whipple) "Well, Sand Bar State Park up in Milton up on the shore of Lake Champlain is one of them that’s been closed until this weekend. In fact, I was just there and they are open for business right now."

(Keck) Whipple says that while park attendance is down slightly because of the cool rainy weather and park closures, he’s optimistic that attendance the rest of the summer will be strong.

For one thing, he says, season pass sales are up 100 percent over last year’s.

While he doesn’t expect to top last summer’s near-record attendance of more than 830,000 visits – remember how nice the weather was last summer – Whipple says if the weather cooperates this summer, they should be on track to hit around 750,000 visits.

(Whipple) "That’s 750,000 visits to state parks – that’s a lot of people and it’s a lot of fun and a lot of happy memories."

(Keck) For VPR News, I’m Nina Keck.

(Host) Campers in Vermont are lucky. In Minnesota, the vast state park system is closed because of a government shutdown.

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