Gov. Tony Evers on Tuesday directed the Department of Natural Resources to reopen several state parks, forests, and recreational areas originally closed due to unprecedented crowds and out of an abundance of caution to protect public health.

The DNR will reopen 34 state parks and forests on May 1, 2020, under special conditions to help minimize overcrowding, allow for social distancing requirements, and to promote a safe and enjoyable experience for staff and visitors.

“Outdoor recreation is important for both physical and mental health, and I know how important it is to Wisconsinites to get outside and enjoy Wisconsin’s natural resources and spring weather,” said Gov. Evers. “With a few adjustments, like closing one day a week for maintenance and reduced hours of operation, folks should be able to get outside and enjoy our parks safely and respectfully.”

State park stickers will be required. Individuals without state park stickers will be asked to purchase them in advance using a credit card by calling (888) 305-0398. Phone lines are open seven days a week from 8 a.m.-3 p.m.

Some natural areas, including Gibraltar Rock, Pewit’s Nest, Parfrey’s Glen and Dells of The Wisconsin River will remain closed.

While parks will be open, hours will be limited and all buildings such as restrooms, along with playgrounds, will be closed.

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