PROVINCE WAIVES ENTRY FEES TO PROVINCIAL PARKS FOR ANOTHER YEAR
– – – 2011 Will See Historic Investments in Parks, No Increases to Camping Fees: Blaikie
More Manitoba families will be able to enjoy expanded services and upgraded facilities in their many beautiful provincial parks thanks to historic investments and the extension of free entry for 2011, Conservation Minister Bill Blaikie announced today.
“We want more people to have the opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors and experience the beauty of our provincial parks,” said Blaikie. “Manitobans want increased investments in their parks and we are pleased that this year will see even more exciting new projects while keeping camping affordable for families.”
Reservations for provincially operated cabins, yurts and group-use sites opened Feb. 7 and, so far, record numbers of people have taken advantage of this convenient way to plan a vacation, the minister said. Seasonal draws around the province began Feb. 28 and campsite reservations will open April 4 through the Parks Reservation Service.
“The number of people visiting provincial parks was up the last two years and 2010 marked a record for attendance,” Blaikie said. “The province will continue to offer free park entry to provide affordable options for tourism and recreation at home and encourage Manitobans to explore their own backyard.”
Since 2006, Manitoba has invested more than $40 million in park infrastructure compared to approximately $7.5 million during the last half of the ‘90s, Blaikie said. In the past 10 years, the province has made significant improvements to park infrastructure including:
electrical upgrades to almost 600 existing basic service sites;
new electrical/water and full-serviced sites;
new modern washroom and shower buildings;
the introduction of the yurt program, which now includes 53 yurts in seven parks across the province;
four new premium cabins at Hecla;
improvements to water- and waste-treatment facilities;
upgrades and additions to park trail systems; and
new playground structures.
“Manitoba’s provincial park camping fees, including those for yurts and cabins, will continue to be some of the lowest in Canada,” said Blaikie.
The free entry policy applies only to Manitoba provincial parks. All campground fees apply.