Put your wallet away and bring your walking shoes, picnic lunches and fishing poles to Watson Mill State Park this Saturday.
Visitors to Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites, including Watson Mill, will not have to pay for parking or admission on Saturday, Sept. 29 as part of National Public Lands Day, according to the Georgia State Parks website and Friends of Watson Mill State Park member Chip Chandler.
The event is sponsored by the Friends of Georgia State Parks & Historic Sites. The celebration brings attention to ways that parks enrich communities, plus the importance of local volunteerism. Parking is normally $5 at state parks, and admission ranges from $2.50 to $10 at state historic sites. Activity fees (such as boat rental) will still apply.
“We’re calling this celebration ‘Your State Parks Day’ to remind Georgians that state parks and historic sites belong to them,” said Andy Fleming, executive director of the Friends of Georgia State Parks Historic Sites. “Parks add so much to our lives. We’re hoping more people will visit the state park closest to their homes, and that they’ll join one of the service projects happening that day.”
“This is also a volunteer work day,” Chandler said.
Call 706-797-3501 for more information about volunteer projects. Chandler says the Friends group has about 34 people signed up to do volunteer work around the park over several upcoming work days.
Friends is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting Georgia’s state parks and historic sites in many ways. Some members serve as campground hosts, others lead programs such as guided hikes, and some help with basic maintenance.
Most members support the organization simply by purchasing annual memberships.
Free parking and admission during “Your State Parks Day” is available to all Georgia residents and visitors. Participating locations can be found on GeorgiaStateParks.org.
“We are thankful for the support that our Friends members give us,” said State Parks Director Becky Kelley. “We wouldn’t be able to offer this free day to Georgians without their help. Hopefully, more people will take this opportunity to explore parks that are right in their own communities.”
The day-long celebration is also in honor of National Public Lands Day and is a Georgia SHAPE initiative.