Record Attendance at State Parks

The Maryland Park Service reports a significant increase in visitors to State parks. According to the Park Service, there have already been 2.2 million more visitors than 2019, with several months still to go. Many Marylanders have sought green and open space provided by State and local parks since the start of the pandemic. The Park Service also reports a record number of closures after reaching maximum capacity. From the press release: "As our state…

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Harford Acquires 347-Acre Waterfront Property for Park

Today, Harford County announced the purchase of a large Chesapeake Bay waterfront land parcel with future plans for a public park. The property, named Belle Vue Farm, includes a mile of coastline and 60 acres of land in the Critical Area. The purchase was made possible through a collaborative effort between Harford County, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Harford Land Trust, and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR). The property, which has been a target for…

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St. Mary’s Partners with Sierra Club to Plant Trees in County Parks

The St. Mary's County Department of Recreation and Parks, along with volunteers from the Southern Maryland Sierra Club, are joining forces to plant native trees at three County parks. A selection of ten native deciduous trees will be planted at Dorsey, 5th District, and Lancaster parks. In addition to their aesthetic value, the trees will provide a habitat for local mammals, birds, reptiles, and insects. The trees will also enhance the parks by sheltering playgrounds,…

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Baltimore City to Open Student Learning Centers for Small Groups

Baltimore City Public Schools will partner with Baltimore City Recreation and Parks to open 15 elementary schools for students to learn online in small groups, beginning September 28. This partnership will allow for 1,000 students to access remote lessons in small groups throughout the city. The Student Learning Centers will help students who do not have internet at home or are less likely to be able to access classes online, providing a space for them…

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Montgomery Promotes Local Parks and Restaurants With “Picnic in the Park” Initiative

Montgomery Parks and the county's tourism and destination marketing organization, Visit Montgomery, are teaming up to promote local parks and restaurants with a new program. Through the "Picnic in the Park" initiative, nine county parks will have signs with QR codes that visitors can scan, linking them to the MoCo Eats page that shows nearby restaurants offering takeout and delivery. The MoCo Eats page is an up-to-date directory of more than 800 restaurants located in…

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Worcester to Take Harbor Day at the Docks Virtual

Last week the Worcester County Recreation and Parks (WCRP) staff announced that the 2020 Harbor Day at the Docks has been cancelled, but there will be a virtual offering. From Worcester County's website: "Unfortunately due to the continuance of the COVID-19 pandemic and based on Worcester County Health Department regulations and Maryland safety protocols, Worcester County has made the decision to cancel this year's Harbor Day at the Docks. The annual event brings residents and…

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Trump Signs Landmark Conservation Bill

Today, President Trump signed the Great American Outdoors Act into law. The landmark conservation bill provides $900 million annually for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) and addresses the roughly $20 billion deferred maintenance backlog for federal lands. Conservation advocates have seen many highs and lows since the bills introduction earlier this year. The President and congressional leadership initially signaled support for the move, but set it aside upon the arrival of the pandemic.…

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Queen Anne’s County Announces Civilian Outreach Group for Parks/Bike Trails

Queen Anne's County Sheriff Gary Hofmann announced a new initiative on Friday for community volunteers to assist the county's Parks and Recreation Ranger Team and Sheriff's Deputies in monitoring the community bike trails and beaches, and offer community outreach to visitors. The announcement was made via QACTV video, which can be found on the county's YouTube page, social media channels, and public access television station. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HyibR9oF6wE The civilian volunteers are available to offer advice on…

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Congress Passes Landmark Conservation Bill

Today the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Great American Outdoors Act that would require full funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund and address much of the backlog of deferred maintenance across several federal agencies. Deemed the “biggest federal lands bill in 50 years,” the Great American Outdoors Act would for the first time fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) with $900 million annually in fossil fuel revenue. Additionally, the…

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Calvert Parks & Recreation Announces Virtual Activity Center

The Calvert County Department of Parks & Recreation (CCPR) has launched a virtual activity center to provide residents with a variety of recreation opportunities and information easily accessed from the comfort of home. The activity center features sports and fitness tips, craft and activity tutorials, virtual field trips, local park and animal information, special events, and more. “The virtual activity center allows CCPR to stay connected with local residents by providing health, wellness, education, and…

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