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When Will Our National Parks Reopen?

Sunset at Mather Point, Grand Canyon National Park. @ XANTERRA

By Everett Potter

Nothing says “summer vacation” like a visit to one of America’s National Parks. But as summer approaches and the coronavirus stay-at-home mandates continue, when will they reopen? The fact is, while Yosemite, Grand Teton, and Yellowstone are among the parks that are fully closed, others have remained open on a very limited basis. The adjustments and restrictions have been made park-by-park, with few if any services available in these parks. The operative term is “limited.”

So as we head into National Park Week (April 18-26), I turned to Betsy O’Rourke, Chief Marketing Officer at Xanterra Travel Collection for some insight. Xanterra manages nearly all the lodges, restaurants and concessions in most of the national parks west of the Mississippi, including Glacier, Grand Canyon, Mount Rushmore, Rocky Mountain, Yellowstone, and Zion.

Everett Potter: Do you anticipate a lot of pent-up demand for America’s parks?

Betsy O’Rourke: We believe that Americans will be seeking out wide open spaces after weeks of confinement. Areas of beauty where we can all take a deep breath and be grateful for our freedom while …

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