Gas-Saving Free Camper Storage Program Continues at Michigan State Parks

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The Department of Natural Resource announced today that the gas-saving, camper storage program at select Michigan state parks and recreation areas will continue this camping season to help families offset the cost of rising gas prices and enjoy their summer vacation plans.

In 2008, the DNR announced a new gas-saving, camper storage pilot program that offered campers the opportunity to save fuel by temporarily storing their camping trailer or recreational vehicle at participating state parks or recreation areas. The pilot program was scheduled to expire in September of 2008, but with the gas prices continuing to increase each year, the program will continue into its fourth season.

“This pilot program was a huge success,” said Ron Olson, chief of the DNR Parks and Recreation Division.  “Due to its overwhelming success, and numerous requests from campers and park staff to continue the program, we decided to continue to extend this program to encourage families to continue their summer vacation plans and help offset the cost of rising gas prices.”

Storage of the camping units will remain free and limited to 15 days.  Storage will only be available at participating state parks or recreation areas, and only until the park or recreation area closes for the season.

Campers wishing to take advantage of this program will need to show proof of a recent or future (within one week) camping stay at a Michigan state park or recreation area campground.

Intermittent Camping Storage, companion to the Gas Saving Storage Pilot Program, allows on-site storage of camping units in participating state parks or recreation area campgrounds.  This program has also been a success at select locations for many years.

The storage fee of $4 per night during unoccupied periods has been eliminated and the program is managed using the following criteria:

  • Free nights will only be available Sunday thru Thursday nights.
  • The full camping rate will be charged during the weekends (Friday and Saturday nights).
  • Camping units must be unplugged and unoccupied to qualify for the free nights.
  • This only applies to specific state parks and recreation areas participating in Intermittent Camping Storage.

For more information about these programs, the parks participating in these programs, and the continued opportunity to save on fuel costs, contact the DNR Parks and Recreation Division office at 517-373-9900, or visit the DNR website at www.michigan.gov/camperstorge.  To find out if a participating park or recreation area has space available, or to find out when they plan to close for the 2011 camping season, contact the park or recreation area.

“The Recreation Passport also makes it affordable for Michigan residents and families to continue to enjoy their summer vacation plans,” said Olson.  “At only $10 for resident motor vehicles, and $5 for resident motorcycles, Michigan residents can enjoy the outdoors at any state park or recreation area, as well as access over 1,100 boating access sites.  With a state park or recreation area within one hour of any place in Michigan, I encourage Michigan residents and visitors to GO-Get Outdoors this summer.”

Camping reservations can be made on-line at www.midnrreservations.com, or by calling the central reservation system at 1-800-447-2757.  For a list of events taking place at your state parks and recreation areas, visit the Get Outdoors Calendar at www.michigan.gov/gogetoutdoors.

The Recreation Passport has replaced motor vehicle permits for entry into Michigan state parks, recreation areas and state-administered boating access fee sites.  This new way to fund Michigan's outdoor recreation opportunities also helps to preserve state forest campgrounds, trails, and historic and cultural sites in state parks, and provides park development grants to local communities.

Michigan residents can purchase the Recreation Passport ($10 for motor vehicles; $5 for motorcycles) by checking "Yes" on their license plate renewal forms, or at any state park or recreation area.  To learn more about the Recreation Passport, visit www.michigan.gov/recreationpassport or call 517-241-7275.

Non-resident motor vehicles must still display a valid Non-Resident Recreation Passport ($29 annual; $8 daily) to enter a Michigan state park, recreation area or state-administered boating access fee site, which can be purchased at any state park or recreation area, or through the Michigan e-Store at www.michigan.gov/estore.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state’s natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/dnr.

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