- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 30, 2021

All national parks will be free for five days in 2022 to encourage people to engage in pandemic-observant outdoor activities.

Following its annual tradition, the National Park Service marked five days in the new year during which entry fees will be waived:

• Jan. 17 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
• April 16, the first day of National Park Week,
• Aug. 4, the anniversary of the Great American Outdoors Act.
• Sept. 24 for National Public Lands Day.
• Nov. 11 for Veterans Day.

Though the pandemic initially cut activity at national parks, 2020 saw 237 million people visit parks nationwide.

NPS Deputy Director Shawn Benge said the parks provide a safe activity for people to enjoy during the pandemic.

“This past year has reminded us how important national parks and public lands are to overall well-being,” Mr. Benge said. “Throughout the country, national parks provided close-to-home opportunities for people to spend much needed time outdoors for their physical and psychological health.”

• Mica Soellner can be reached at msoellner@washingtontimes.com.

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