Va. State Parks See July 4th Weekend Surge in Visitation

July 13, 2016 · 0 minute read

I’m a huge fan of Virginia’s state parks system, so I thought I’d pass this good news along:

Virginia State Parks hosted quite the July 4th weekend, with increases over last year in visitation and revenue. Despite intermittent rainy weather in some parts of Virginia, attendance increased by 74,816, a 36 percent increase over last year’s holiday weekend. Overall revenue for the weekend was up 43 percent, with increases in cabin rentals, swimming fees, merchandise sales and nearly every other category of visitor spending.

“We’re really pleased,” said State Parks Director Craig Seaver. “It was a great weekend despite sporadic rain events throughout the state. The weekend of the 4th is our traditional  mid-point to the summer season, and guests took advantage of the many recreational opportunities available in their state parks to include fishing, boating, swimming, camping, hiking and mountain biking to name a few.”

Overall attendance is up 16 percent in 2016.

“More than half of our operating budget, 56 percent, comes directly from revenue – money spent in state parks stays in state parks,” Seaver said. “We hosted 280,273 visitors over the four-day weekend this year, up from 205,457 last year.”