Shenandoah announces free-entry days, and other parks news

Celebrate National Park Week, visit the James Creek Marina in DC and look out for freshly paved roads in national parks.

road on mountain in virginia with snow
© Andrew /

The DMV hasn’t seen much snow this winter aside from a few inches, but that hasn’t kept Shenandoah National Park’s Skyline Drive from closing due to icy roads and snowy forecasts. 

Whether you’ve been tucked indoors ever since the clocks turned back, or you’re ready for a cold day of adventure, here’s what you need to know about local parks and recreation news this month. 

Shenandoah National Park

Shenandoah National Park released a schedule of free-entry days for visitors in 2020, including Saturday, April 18 for the first day of National Park Week and National Junior Ranger Day; Saturday, June 20 for Neighbor Appreciation Day; Tuesday, Aug. 25 for National Park Service Birthday; Saturday, Sept. 26 for National Public Lands Day and Wednesday, Nov. 11 for Veterans Day

Washington, DC Park News

The National Park Service selected an operator for James Creek Marina in Washington, DC, choosing NB Marine Services (formerly known as Guest Services, Inc.), which will provide wet slip rentals, fuel service, marine sanitation, parking lot operations and retail and vending sales at the marina for the next 10 years. The company’s new name and contract will allow for an expansion of offerings at the marina, including kayak and canoe rentals, a kayak and canoe launch point and bike rentals. The official contract started on Jan. 1.

Roads and Highways

According to the National Park Service, three different projects have been completed in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration. The Baltimore-Washington Parkway was completely repaved between Jessup Road and Laurel Bowie Road, an estimated total of 13.5 miles. The Clara Barton Parkway was repaved between Chain Bridge and Carderock, Maryland for an estimated 13.5 miles. 

The George Washington Memorial Parkway was repaved between Spout Run Parkway and I-495, the Capital Beltway, for approximately 15 miles. The National Park Service has committed to improving safety on the highway, as well as the total rehabilitation of the Arlington Memorial Bridge. Multiple multi-year projects were also completed in Washington, DC. 

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