Some state parks reopen for limited use

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News/Michele Janko
Alligators and other wildlife are often seen at Kissimmee Prairie State Park.

Florida state parks, which were closed to the public due to concerns about the spread of the COVID-19 virus, started reopening last week.

The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is taking measures to ensure the protection of staff and the public.

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News/Florida State Park
Kissimmee Prairie State Park is a designated “Dark Skies” park, popular with stargazers.

During this early phase of reopening, visitors should expect limited hours, capacity and amenities. Portions of these parks and trails have been identified that can be reopened for daytime use with limited risk to visitors and staff. To reduce risk, cash transactions are limited to exact change.

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News/David DeWitt
This image of a Kissimmee Prairie State Park vista was entered in the Florida State Park photography contest.

State parks now open in South Central Florida are:
• Atlantic Ridge Preserve State Park (Martin County);
• Avalon State Park (St. Lucie County);
• Collier-Seminole State Park (Collier County);
• Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park (Collier County);
• Fakahatchee Strand Preserve State Park (Collier County);
• Highlands Hammock State Park (Highlands County);
• Indian River Lagoon Preserve State Park (Brevard County);
• Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park (Okeechobee County);
• Lake June-in-Winter Scrub Preserve State Park (Highlands County);
• Okeechobee Battlefield Historic State Park (Okeechobee County); and,
• St. Lucie Inlet Preserve State Park (Martin County).

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News/Florida State Parks
Lots of hikers enjoy Highlands Hammock State Park.

For more information online, see floridastateparks.org.

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