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E-M:/ All State Parks Move to Site-Specific Reservations

Enviro-Mich message from "Richard Morscheck" <morscher@michigan.gov>

November 1, 2005

Contacts: Colleen Steinman 517-373-0399 or Mary Dettloff 517-335-3014
All State Parks Move to Site-Specific Reservations

Campers at Michigan state parks and recreation areas will be able to reserve a specific site in all 70 locations that offer camping beginning in 2006, according to the Department of Natural Resources.

Waiting to select a site upon arrival at the campground - site-standard reservations - will end effective Jan. 1, 2006, affecting peak season reservation options at Mears, Onaway, Orchard Beach, Petoskey, Traverse City and Wilson state parks. These six state parks will now have interactive maps that allow campers to choose exact sites on the DNR's Campground Reservation System (CRS).

"This change makes the DNR more responsive to the public's demand to choose specific sites in a fair manner," said DNR Director Rebecca Humphries. "The newest feature of our CRS - interactive maps that allow campers to choose their specific site rather than just a type of site - is just another way we are using technology to make getting people outdoors more accessible and convenient."

Creating a uniform site-specific reservation process for all locations eliminates confusion and gives campers the ability to select the exact location they want before arrival, DNR officials said. Independent surveys report campers give the site-specific reservation option a 70 percent approval rating.

"In the five years since the DNR first moved to site-specific reservations, we have resolved the difficulties, such as double-booking and incorrect campsite information," said Ron Olson, chief of the parks and recreation division. "This move will simplify the reservation process for campers and ensure all 13,496 campsites in the state park system are used effectively and efficiently."

Advances in technology to develop on-line interactive maps and provide detailed descriptions of each site help campers select a site while making a reservation, even if they have never visited the campground. Each description includes details such lot size, electrical amperage, size of a hard-surface camp pad and shade or sun exposure.

Site standard reservations will continue to be used during early spring and late fall camping seasons.

The DNR is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state's natural resources for current and future generations.

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