State-managed parks and forests in West Virginia have welcomed a record-breaking number of in-state guests so far this year, thanks to a promotional discount available through August, Governor Jim Justice announced today.
The announcement comes as a result of a park promotion prompted by the coronavirus-19 outbreak and includes a 30-percent discount on all state park and forest lodging for resident guests, the governor said.
“I’m thrilled to see so many folks taking advantage of our 'WVSTRONG' promotion and social distancing outside at our wonderful state parks this summer,” Justice said.
“Our parks are on the move, and I encourage everyone to take advantage of this resident discount before the end of the season.”
The parks saw a 227-percent increase in online reservations compared to June 2019, as the results of thousands of promotional code redemptions.
State Parks Chief Brad Reed said officials hope the promotion has provided a valuable opportunity for state residents to explore what's available in their backyards.
"We want our residents to know that we appreciate their diligence and commitment to safe-travel practices and that you don't have to travel far away to enjoy a nice vacation," Reed said.
Steve McDaniel, director of the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, says residents are encouraged to continue visiting and take advantage of the discount through the end of August.
"More people stayed close to home this summer but were still able to safely and responsibly enjoy a getaway at our parks and forests," McDaniel said.
The WVSTRONG discount offer applies to lodge rooms, cabins, and campsite reservations for any West Virginia resident through August 31.
Cabins and campgrounds tend to fill up quickly, but limited availability remains at several of the lodges.
The discount is available to guests who make a reservation online at wvstateparks.com or over the phone by calling 1-833-WVPARKS.
Guests who claim the discount will be asked to verify West Virginia residency with a state-issued ID at check-in, and veterans and senior citizens can combine the discount with their existing discounts by using code WVSENIORS or WVVETERAN at checkout.
Park and forest staff continue to follow all COVID-19 guidelines issued by state and federal officials, which includes social distancing, the use of personal protective equipment, such as masks, and the amendation of operations to incorporate more stringent cleaning.
Guests are advised to maintain at least six feet of distance from others and to wear masks indoors where social distancing is not possible. For updates on availability and service changes due to COVID-19, visit wvstateparks.com/travel-alert.
West Virginia’s state parks and forests host more than seven million guests annually in 35 parks and nine forests and on two rail-trails. West Virginia State Parks is managed by the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, a division of the West Virginia Department of Commerce.
Camp Creek State Forest opens remote guest cabin
A remarkable remote cabin that requires a 3.3-mile hike to access has been opened at Camp Creek State Forest, providing guests the opportunity for an unmatched off-the-grid experience in West Virginia. Read the full story here.
Sign up to receive a FREE copy of West Virginia Explorer Magazine in your email twice weekly. Sign me up!