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County parks gear up for campers during state shutdown

With state parks closed during the shutdown and Minnesotans anxious to get out of town for the Fourth of July, county parks are expecting an influx of visitors.

But many of them are set up for daytime use, not camping, says the Bemidji Pioneer.

Richard Moore of Beltrami County told the paper that he expects those shut out of the state parks might now look toward using the day-use areas in county parks. But there is a difference.

“State parks are more developed and are more overnight-oriented,” Moore said. “We are more day-use and are lesser developed. We are a different niche.”

And while in some areas there is no camping allowed and there are non-motorized areas, the parks offer plenty of wildlife viewing and hiking opportunities.

And Moore said that loggers who had been working on state forest lands before the government shutdown may now be looking for new work on county land. But so far, officials haven’t seen a big upsurge in that.

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