Campgrounds to close if no government deal is reached by Monday

Tom Bogner worked for six months to lock up this site—to park his RV during a trip to Southwest Florida. But on Monday, he may have to leave.

“Finding a nice place to replace this is difficult,” he said.

People staying at the W.P. Franklin Locks in Alva are being forced to pack up and leave thanks to the federal government shutdown.

“It’s kind of sad, you know, and shocking that it’s actually happening down on this level of campers and boaters,” said Dan Culligan.

Signs posted nearly everywhere in the park warn visitors of the possible park closure.

Come Monday, people living on the lots that cost as little as $15 per day will be scrambling to find new places if no deal is made overnight.

“Tomorrow morning, we’re going to get on the phone at 8:30 and phone three or four of the private parks and see if they have any openings left. While my wife’s doing that, I’m going to be packing all of our things and getting ready to go,” Bogner said.

Finding a new place may be difficult—many people have already prepaid for spaces weeks in advance, and getting their money back will take time.

“It would be really nice to wake up tomorrow morning and know that at one o’clock this morning when they’re having a vote, that they decided to pull up their big boy pants and got something done,” Bogner said.

If not, park rangers and volunteers will lock the gate—until the government reopens.

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