Five DE state parks getting upgrades with federal dollars coming their way

DELAWARE- Federal dollars are going to improving Delaware campground amenities, but just how important is making that investment?

“The more popular it gets the more investments you have to make, the more maintenance you have to do the more you improve them the more popular they get,” Delaware Natural Resources and Environmental Control Secretary Shawn Garvin said.

$3.2 million is being divided between five state park campgrounds. The grant funded by the American Rescue plan will allow parks to be even more attractive, while bringing in new visitors to the First State, its businesses, and local attractions. “A lot of folks who have been visitors before will come back and say hmm it’s even better than it was,” U.S. Senator Tom Carper said.

“Here at Cape Henlopen, the division is working to expand its campgrounds with additional sites, amenities, and a new full service cabin,” Garvin said. “Plans call for 6 cottages to be added to the existing 12 at Delaware Seashore State Park and the Indian River Marina with an additional dozen or so cottages on the South side campground.”

Garvin said visitation has been on the rise, especially since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic; and with more people wanting to stay and play at these parks it’s important they keep up with the demand. “In 2011, Delaware state parks saw 67,000 nights booked and by last year that number had grown to over 150,000 that we expect to have booked and we expect it to continue to increase,” Garvin said.  This is something that U.S. Senator Tom Carper Agrees with. “Thomas Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence wrote about life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness and the investments that we are going to be able to make here will enhance our lives and provide for a lot of happiness for a bunch if people,” Sen. Carper said.

The grant will not only support Cape Henlopen and Delaware Seashore State Parks, but also Killens Pond, Lums Pond, and Trap Pond. We’re told Trap Pond has plans to build a splash park and a bond bill that was signed yesterday by Delaware lawmakers includes $2.5 million to help make that happen.

Categories: Delaware, Local News