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State Parks sees visitation increase

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Town Crier “Briefs from the Region” (2) – 8/25/21

Like many neighboring recreation sites and national parks, Montana State Parks saw an influx of visitors this year as residents and visitors to the Treasure State sought the outdoors. State Parks reported 1.5 million visitors from January to June of this year—an 11.1 percent increase from last year and 44.1 percent increase from 2019. “For the second straight year, the state parks system has experienced significant visitation growth for the first half of the year,” said Beth Shumate, state parks division administrator in a news release. “Our staff, volunteers, and partner organizations have done an excellent job of providing a safe and inviting place for people to experience some of the most outstanding historical, cultural, and recreational opportunities that Montana has to offer.”

The top five most visited parks between January and June of this year were:

Giant Springs State Park, Great Falls – 212,329 visits

Spring Meadow Lake State Park, Helena – 152,515 visits

Flathead Lake State Park (all units), Flathead Lake – 147,003 visits

Cooney Reservoir State Park, Roberts – 124,834 visits

Lake Elmo State Park, Billings – 106,754 visits

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