Thursday, May 26, 2011

Economic Impacts of Maryland State Parks

In 2010, 362,714 people visited Maryland’s State Parks during Memorial Day weekend, with approximately 6 million people making visits between Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day weekend.

“State Parks represent an affordable, relaxing way to connect with nature, family and friends,” according to Maryland Park Service Superintendent Nita Settina. “There’s a State Park within easy driving distance of every Marylander, allowing them to save money on gas, help the environment and still not have to make any sacrifices when it comes to their holiday adventure.”

Maryland’s State Parks not only provide great outdoor recreation for Marylanders and visitors, they are also a great asset to State and local economies. According to a recent study, conducted in partnership with the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development, the Maryland Office of Tourism Development and the Maryland Association of Destination Marketing Organizations, Maryland State Parks have an estimated annual economic benefit of more than $650 million. In 2010, visitors directly spent more than $567 million locally.

According to DNR Secretary John Griffin. “Our 66 State Parks not only provide those memories and tremendous recreational opportunities, but they also contribute significantly to our local economies.”

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Assateague State Park Discount Admission

Admission to Assateague State Park will be reduced from Monday - Friday during the month of June.

Day-use area admission will be discounted to $2 per person for Maryland residents and $3 per person for out-of-state visitors.

For more information about Assateague State Park, visit:

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Maryland Walk In The Woods Day Hikes

On Saturday May 21st, 2011, Maryland Park Service (MPS) and Maryland Forest Service is offering free guided hikes to celebrate the International Year of the Forest (IYOF) and National Walk in the Woods Day.

Hikes will be held on Saturday May 21 from 10 am - 12 pm in State parks throughout Maryland. Each hike is designed to give visitors an opportunity to explore the parks’ beautiful forest trails and will include breaks for photography, and reflection.

Participants should reserve a spot in advance and are encouraged to pack a lunch and enjoy a picnic in the park after the hike.

Maryland Walk In The Woods Day hikes will take place at the following State Parks:

Pocomoke River State Park
Location: Shad Landing Camp Store
Registration: 410-632-2566 ext 106

Wye Island State Park
Location: School House Nature Trail Parking Area
Registration: 410-820-1668 or 410-827-7577

Patapsco Valley State Park
Location: McKeldin Area
Registration: 410-461-5005

Gunpowder Falls State Park
Location: Big Falls Rd and the Big Gunpowder Falls
Registration: 410-592-2897

Cunningham Falls State Park
Location: Falls Trail
Registration: 301-271-7574

Seneca Creek State Park
Location: Park Office
Registration: 301-924-2127

Swallow Falls State Park
Location: Trailhead at main parking lot
Registration: 301-334-9180

source: MD DNR

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Stevensville Maryland Art in the Park

The Third Annual Art in the Park will be held in downtown historic Stevensville, Maryland on June 18, 2011. The show will be in Pocket Park, located between Love Point Rd and Cockey Lane.

Local and visiting artists will exhibit original artwork including paintings, prints, photography, pottery, jewelry, sculpture, books, clothes and more.

As part of the celebration, local shops, galleries, restaurants, and historic sites will be open to the public. Other attractions will include music and food vendors.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

New Germany State Park Fishing Rodeo

The 2011 Fishing Rodeo, a free fishing challenge open to children ages 4-15, will be held from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturday May 21 at New Germany State Park.

“The Fishing Rodeo is a great opportunity for kids to learn and enjoy the sport of fishing in a pressure-free environment,” said Ranger Luke Mongrain of New Germany State Park. “To encourage beginners, a limited supply of fishing equipment will be available for loan during the event.”

Prizes will be awarded for the longest fish caught in three age groups: 4-6, 7-11 and 12-15. Door prizes, hot dogs and soda will be provided by the Friends of New Germany. Other sponsors include the Grantsville Lions and the Grantsville Rotary Club.

During the rodeo, fishing will be restricted to children 15 and under, with limited adult assistance. Boating will not be permitted.

For more information, contact Ranger Mongrain at 301-895-5453 or

source: MD DNR

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Green Streets-Green Jobs Program

Maryland Department of the Environment has announced the first-ever grant recipients of the collaborative Green Streets-Green Jobs Initiative, a program designed to promote green streets, urban green infrastructure, and green jobs as part of an overall community or watershed plan.

In total, 10 cities and towns were awarded $25,000-$35,000 grants to fund the planning and design of green infrastructure projects within the Chesapeake Bay and Anacostia watersheds. This announcement was made at the start of the EPA’s Green Streets-Green Jobs Forum, a two-day event in support of innovative, green infrastructure practices to restore urban waters, promote renewable energy and protect public health and safety.

The Green Streets-Green Jobs awardees include: Baltimore City, College Park, University Park, Capitol Heights, Bladensburg, Edmonston, Mount Rainier, Hyattsville, Cottage City and Colmar Manor.

The Green Streets-Green Jobs Initiative is administered through the Trust’s Watershed Assistance Grant Program

A “green street” is a street that:

1) minimizes impact through an approach that incorporates water quality, energy-efficiency, and other environmental best practices

2) integrates a system of stormwater management to increase infiltration and/or reduce flow

3) reduces the amount of water that is piped directly into streams

4) makes the best use of the street tree canopy for stormwater interception, temperature mitigation and air quality improvement

5) encourages pedestrian and/or bicycle access

6) provides an aesthetic advantage to a community.

source: Chesapeake Bay Trust