FOR RELEASE – December 4, 2020
For more information, contact Meg Matthews, (501) 837-3086 or [email protected]
(LITTLE ROCK, Ark.) – Visitor information centers, museums, restaurants and two marinas at Arkansas State Parks will see a reduction of operating hours to efficiently manage available resources during the recent statewide increase in COVID-19 cases.
“Flexibility is necessary during these unprecedented times,” said Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism Secretary Stacy Hurst. “Due to the impact of COVID-19 on our parks system, we must make adjustments in order to ensure that our most-used amenities and facilities continue to be available to the public during the days and hours they use them the most.”
Visitor information centers and museums will now operate five days a week – focusing on staying open during busiest days. Contactless check-in for camping and cabin rentals has been in place for months and will continue.
“Our goal is to continue to offer the premier level of service to our guests that Arkansas State Parks has become known for,” said Arkansas State Parks Director Grady Spann. “The safety of our guests and staff is paramount, and these measures will allow us to still offer the park experience that so many visitors have counted on for decades and do it in a safe way.”
State park restaurants will remain open but with reduced seating capacity. Buffets remain closed but carry out meals will still be available. Cabins, campgrounds, and lodges across the park system will remain open and continue to welcome guests.
The marinas at DeGray Lake Resort State Park and Lake Ouachita State Park will offer restricted service through February 2021. This is traditionally the slowest time of year for these facilities and marina users can contact the park office if assistance is needed.
PPE for all staff and cleaning regimens based on CDC recommendations will continue at all Arkansas state parks. The statewide mask mandate will be enforced as directed, and rangers will continue to encourage social distancing.
Localized conditions could lead to a further reduction of hours for some park facilities. Please refer to the COVID-19 updates on www.ArkansasStateParks.com for updated information.