Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today invited New Yorkers and visitors to celebrate this Fourth of July weekend at one of New York’s many campgrounds and historic sites. The Governor also reminded visitors of the numerous programs and opportunities available at state parks throughout the summer.
“Our parks are gateways to explore the exceptional beauty and rich history that lies in every corner of this state,” Governor Cuomo said. “I encourage residents and visitors alike to kick-off July 4th weekend by visiting a state park and seeing for themselves all that this state has to offer.”
“Whether you’re looking to explore our nation’s history at one of our historic sites or looking to view extraordinary firework displays across the state, there is something for everyone to discover this July 4th weekend,” said Rose Harvey, Commissioner of the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. “Thanks to Governor Cuomo’s continued investment in State Parks, families can continue to enjoy these yearly traditions.”
To commemorate this important holiday weekend, New York State Parks will have patriotic themed activities across the state. Highlights include the 2016 Astoria Banks July 4th Fireworks at Jones Beach State Park. This 30-minute firework show will be visible from all parking fields and be simulcast to patriotic songs on WALK 97.5 and K98.3 Visitors should be aware that increased safety and security measures will be in place for the holiday, and they may be subject to security screenings, and that parking on the road shoulder will not be allowed. Other themed events include John Jay Homestead State Historic Site’s Independence Day Fair and Grafton Lakes State Park’s Independence Day Sand Sculpture Contest.
Leading up to the July Fourth festivities, Hamlin Beach State Park will host an evening of performances with their Salute to America on July 2nd. Music will be performed from 6:45-9:45pm followed by fireworks at 10:00pm. Allegany State Park-Quaker Area will also celebrate our nation’s independence on July 3rd with fireworks, food and music throughout the day. The chicken barbeque begins at 4:00pm (until sold out) followed by music at 7:00pm and concluding with a fireworks display over the waters of Quaker Lake.
A complete schedule with details of holiday events this weekend can be found here. Additional events for the rest of the summer are also available on State Parks’calendar of events.
Opportunities for the remainder of the summer include free Learn-to-Swim Programs for youth. These programs will begin their sessions in July and a full schedule of programs along with registration and enrollment information can be found on the State Parks website.
As a reminder to families, New York State Parks will accept the National Park Service’s (NPS) Every-Kid-in-a Park pass upon presentation for free entry for 4th grade students into all State Parks in 2016. The pass applies only to the vehicle entry fee, and the 4th grader must be present in the vehicle. The pass will also be accepted at state historic sites for the pass holder and up to 3 adults for house tour fees. Fourth grade students can obtain and print their pass at https://www.everykidinapark.gov/. For more information and guidelines, please visit: http://nysparks.com/environment/connect-kids.aspx .
Under Governor Cuomo's leadership, New York State is making a historic commitment to improving and expanding access to outdoor recreation. The Governor's NY Parks 2020 program is a multi-year commitment to leverage $900 million in private and public funding for State Parks from 2011 to 2020. The Governor's 2015-16 Executive Budget allocates $110 million toward this initiative.
The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation oversees 180 state parks and 35 historic sites, which are visited by 62 million people annually. A recent study found that New York State Parks generates $1.9 billion in economic activity annually and supports 20,000 jobs. For more information on any of these recreation areas, call 518-474-0456 or visit www.nysparks.com, connect on Facebook, or follow on Twitter.
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