Hiking on a mountain side trail.

State Parks Waiving Fees on Black Friday as #OptOutside Grows to 1.8 Million People

Outdoor adventurers can visit park systems in 22 states for free on November 25

Nov 16, 2016

SEATTLE – As millions of adventurers choose to #OptOutside on Black Friday, several states across the country have announced their plans to waive fees to park systems on November 25. State parks join a growing number (475 to date) of corporate, nonprofit and public sector organizations that are helping people spend more time in the outdoors this holiday season, and several state, local and federal parks that are always free.

“More than 1.8 million people are planning to #OptOutside with us on Black Friday. It’s amazing to see so many park systems join in the movement to give Americans even more ways to connect with our country’s inspiring outdoor places. We are grateful for the park stewards and professionals who make the outdoor American experience so vibrant,” said Jerry Stritzke, REI’s CEO and president. 

“America’s state parks are a tonic for the mind, body and spirit,” said Lewis Ledford, executive director of the National Association of State Park Directors. “These experiences can be enjoyed within a short drive from home virtually anywhere in the country.”

State park systems that are waiving fees on Black Friday include:

  • Arizona*
  • Kansas
  • Oregon
  • California*
  • Michigan
  • Vermont
  • Colorado
  • Minnesota
  • Virginia*
  • Delaware
  • Nevada*
  • Indiana
  • New Mexico

State park systems that have free basic admission every day include:

  • Arkansas
  • Missouri
  • Ohio
  • Illinois
  • Montana*
  • Pennsylvania
  • Iowa
  • North Carolina
  • Tennessee

For the past three weeks, REI has helped promote different leaders discussing the importance of building and sustaining local, state and national outdoor places. Two of these perspectives, which were featured on REI’s Co-op Journal, include:

  • Will Rogers, President and CEO of the Trust for Public Land, recently noted that in 25 of the country’s largest cities, “more than half of residents under age nineteen don’t have a place to play outdoors close to home.”
  • Martha Roskowski, vice president of Innovation at People for Bikes, also recently highlighted the importance of building cycling networks within our towns and cities, so commuting to nearby places to play outdoors is easier.

Additional information on #OptOutside, the co-op’s partners and how to join the movement is available at REI.com/opt-outside.

That National Association of State Park Directors promotes and advances the state park systems of America for their own significance, as well as for their important contributions to the nation’s environment, heritage, health and economy. Additional details are available at www.naspd.org.

*Some restrictions. Contact your state park.
About the REI Co-op

REI is a specialty outdoor retailer, headquartered near Seattle. The nation’s largest consumer co-op, REI is a growing community of more than 19 million members who expect and love the best quality gear, inspiring expert classes and trips, and outstanding customer service. REI has 168 locations in 39 states and the District of Columbia. If you can’t visit a store, you can shop at REI.com, REI Outlet or the REI shopping app. REI isn’t just about gear. Adventurers can take the trip of a lifetime with REI’s active adventure travel company, a global leader that runs more than 200 itineraries across all continents. In every community where REI has a presence, professionally trained instructors share their expertise by hosting beginner-to advanced-level classes and workshops about a wide range of activities. To build on the infrastructure that makes life outside possible, REI invests millions annually in hundreds of local and national nonprofits that create access to—and steward—the outdoor places that inspire us all.