HOMESTEAD, Fla.- The National Park Service (NPS) has closed all 401 national parks, including Everglades National Park, because of the government shutdown.
All visitor facilities including five Visitor Centers (Homestead, Royal Palm, Flamingo, Shark Valley, and Everglades City), all park campgrounds, park roads, and recreational waters are closed. In addition, all park programs have been cancelled. The parks will remain closed until the government reopens. Park visitors in overnight campgrounds in Everglades National Park will be notified that they will have until 6:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on Thursday, October 3 to make travel arrangements and leave the park.
Everglades National Park hosts 2723 visitors on average each day in October; nationally, more than 715,000 visitors a day frequent the National Park System. The park will lose an estimated $2435 in entrance fees each day of the shutdown and an estimated $612 in other fees. Nationwide, the NPS stands to lose approximately $450,000 per day in lost revenue from fees collected at entry stations and fees paid for in-park activities such as cave tours, boat rides and camping. Gateway communities across the country see about $76 million per day in total sales from visitor spending that is lost during a government shutdown. Visitors spend about $147 million a year in the communities around Everglades National Park.
In Everglades National Park, 238 employees are on furlough because of the shutdown. Thirty-four employees remain on duty, providing security, emergency services, and critical infrastructure/utility system support.