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State parks offer free admission on Black Friday

Delaware Public Media

Those looking for an alternative to Black Friday’s shopping frenzy have a free option at all 15 Delaware state parks.

Parks officials are waiving all admission fees this Friday in response to outdoor retailer REI’s choice to close its stores and pay its employees to head into nature instead.


The Go Ape zip line course at Lums Pond State Park will also be free for kids 15 and under if accompanied by an adult.


“We were quite excited about it, actually. We thought it was a great idea and also, again, another opportunity to reintroduce why being outdoors is so important and how much of a benefit it is to you both mentally and physically,” said State Parks marketing director Dawn Mosley.


Mosley says a similar campaign offering free, guided nature hikes during New Years Day was a hit with park-goers, reinforcing  the idea that exploring nature shouldn't be limited to spring and summer. 


“What a great opportunity as fall is here, winter is approaching, to get outside, have some fun in the leaves and enjoy a day outdoors and not the hustle and bustle of the highways and the indoor shopping experience. That will always be there,” said Mosley.


California, Colorado, Minnesota, Missouri and Oregon are among other states waiving entrance, parking or camping fees nationwide.


All state parks will open at 8 a.m., though park offices will be closed for the day.


A list of locations and activity ideas can be found at the Delaware State Parks website.