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Entry fees waived on National Public Lands Day in Kentucky this weekend

U.S. Forest Service

The National Park Service will waive fees at national parks, monuments, forests and other federal public lands around Kentucky on Saturday, Sept. 24.

For the last 29 years, The National Environmental Education Foundation has partnered with the National Park Service to celebrate nature and hold the largest single day of volunteer events for the country’s public lands on National Public Lands Day.

“During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, our country’s public lands acted as a safe haven for all Americans to gather with their friends and families,” said Meri-Margaret Deoudes, president and CEO of NEEF in a press release. “NPLD gives us an opportunity to return the favor. Along with our state and federal partners, we invite the public to join us in giving back to these spaces that have played such an important role in our lives.”

People can volunteer at 500 events around the country including at least 10 volunteer events around Kentucky. There will be shore cleanups at Lake Cumberland and Green River Lake, and a fishing derby for seniors 62 and older in Jamestown. 

Mammoth Cave National Park is already free to enter, but has plans to offer a free self-guided tour on National Public Lands day. 

The Daniel Boone National Forest is waiving most recreation area fees for day sites and overnight camping. 

Following Information provided by the U.S. Forest Service:

At the Daniel Boone National Forest, the following day-use sites will be fee-free on Saturday, September 24:

  • Cave Run Lake – all boat ramps outside of developed campgrounds
  • Laurel River Lake - all boat ramps outside of developed campgrounds
  • Bee Rock Boat Ramp – Laurel County
  • Clear Creek Boat Ramp – Bath County
  • Billy Branch Day Use Picnic Area – Rowan County
  • Natural Arch Scenic Area – McCreary County
  • Appletree Shooting Range – McCreary County
  • Keno Shooting Range – Pulaski County
  • Whitman Branch Shooting Range – Laurel County
  • Redbird Crest Trail – Clay and Leslie counties
  • White Sulphur OHV Trail – Bath County

On the evening of Saturday, September 24, the following overnight camping sites will be fee-free:

  • Backcountry camping in the Red River Gorge – Menifee, Powell and Wolfe counties
  • Bee Rock Campground – Laurel and Pulaski counties
  • S-Tree Campground – Jackson County
  • Great Meadows Campground – McCreary County
  • Barren Fork Horse Camp – McCreary County


Ryan Van Velzer is the Kentucky Public Radio Managing Editor. Email Ryan at rvanvelzer@lpm.org.

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