Camping during COVID-19 over Labor Day Weekend

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KINGSTON TOWNSHIP, LUZERNE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – The campgrounds at Frances Slocum State Park were filled with people ready for a weekend outdoors.

“Actually when we booked it, this was the last site that was left. They had no other, well the lsat electric site that was left,” said Katie Goetz, of Lake Ariel.

Park staff tell us they’ve seen an increase in campers, not just over the holiday weekend, but for the past few months.

“We’ve been filled in here every weekend which normally we’re not. Which I like all the people in here,” said Rose Miner, Campground Host, Frances Slocum State Park.

That increase isn’t just local. During this pandemic, the Pennsylvania State Park system saw an increase of more than one million visitors per month in May, June and July compared to the same three months last year.

“They’re tired of being cooped up and they want to get out. As long as they behave I don’t care,” said Miner.

The Goetz family is glad to get away to the great outdoors.

“It’s the one thing that we can do together as a family instead of just you know sitting inside all summer. So yeah we’ve actually been camping three or four times this year,” said Katie Goetz of Lake Ariel.

She says she was concerned about contracting the virus the first time she camped this year.

“Especially with the baby, I did get a little nervous. Especially bringing her in the bathrooms or anywhere like the pool if it’s crowded. Those types definitely. Not so much now,” said Geotz.

Some campers brought their own supplies to avoid general areas.

“It’s kind of set up so that er don’t have to have any interactions. We brought hand sanitizers and things like that so we’re really protected from possibly being infected,” said Claire McGrath, South Jersey.

“It doesn’t have a bathroom inside so have an external bathroom, we have running water and the cleaning supplies we can need. Just to really make sure we are self contained in our weekend adventures,” said Carolyn Tassini of South Jersey.

Masks are required when walking outside of your site.

Click here for a list of precautions recommended by the DCNR while camping.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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