On Monday, just days ahead of the deadline for public comment, U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) will join with leading outdoor enthusiasts and small businesses to call on the Trump Administration and Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke to withdraw the National Park Service’s (NPS) proposal to nearly triple national park entrance fees.


Speakers will highlight the importance of access to public lands and Olympic and Mount Rainier National Parks to local jobs and economic development. According to the Outdoor Industry Association, outdoor recreation is a major economic driver. In Washington state alone, outdoor recreation accounts for more than 201,000 direct jobs, $26.2 billion in annual consumer spending, $7.6 billion in wages and salaries, and $2.3 billion in state and local tax revenue.


The deadline to comment on the NPS proposed national park visitor fee increase is November 23, 2017 (Thanksgiving Day). Comments can be submitted on the NPS website.


Who:             U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell

Phil Freeman, Owner, Copper Creek Inn, Cabins and Lodge at Mt Rainier

Rob Smith, Executive Director, National Parks Conservation Association

Jim Whittaker, First American to climb Everest and first employee of REI

Michelle Piñon, Latino Outdoors

Tom Vogl, CEO, Mountaineers

Rick Hegdahl, Director, Vet Voice


When:           TOMORROW, Monday, November 20, 2017, 11 A.M. PST


Where:            Olympic Sculpture Park – PACCAR Pavilion

2901 Western Avenue

Seattle, WA 98121


***The event will be live streamed online at: https://www.facebook.com/senatorcantwell/


On October 24, the National Park Service (NPS) announced a proposal to nearly triple the entrance fees beginning in 2018 for 17 of its most popular parks during their five-month-long peak seasons. Under the proposed plan, fees will increase from $25 per vehicle to $70 per vehicle for Olympic and Mount Rainier National Parks beginning May 1, 2018.


In 2016, nearly 3.4 million people visited Olympic National Park, putting it in the top ten most visited parks. Mount Rainier National Park saw more than 1.4 million visitors in 2016.