National

National parks to waive fees for 3 weekends

Double-crested cormorants and anhingas gather in the branches above Taylor Slough at Everglades National Park, Florida.
Double-crested cormorants and anhingas gather in the branches above Taylor Slough at Everglades National Park, Florida. Allen Holder/Kansas City Star/MCT

National parks, including Everglades National Park and Dry Tortugas National Park in South Florida, will drop fees for three summer weekends.

The parks will lift admission fees June 20-21, July 18-19 and August 15-16.

U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced the fee waivers on Tuesday, calling it a dual effort to provide affordable vacations and to boost the economy in communities bordering the nation's 319 national parks.

''Tourism income helps America's economic recovery,'' Salazar said in a news release.

About half the parks charge entrance fees. Everglades charges $10 per car for a pass that is good for one week. Dry Tortugas charges $5 to visitors, who must get to the site 70 miles west of Key West by boat or ferry. Biscayne National Park and the Big Cypress National Wildlife Preserve do not charge entrance fees.

Three other national parks in Florida will also drop entry fees -- Canaveral National Seashore in Brevard County, the Castillo de San Marco National Monument near St. Augustine and Gulf Islands National Seashore in the Panhandle.

Read the complete story at miamiherald.com

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