State Parks open campgrounds and cabins Friday

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources’ Division of State Parks Thursday announced that state park properties such as campgrounds, cabins and more will open today under the next phase of Gov. Eric Holcomb’s plan lifting restrictions placed due to the coronavirus.

As of 10 a.m. Friday such facilities as camper cabins, inns and restaurants will also reopen. All of the openings come under Stage 3 of Holcomb’s Back on Track overview based on safety for Indiana residents.

However, prior reservations made that were cancelled because of the pandemic cannot be re-established. Those citizens who lost out will have to make new reservations for the Memorial Day weekend.

There are some exceptions to the opening. The Garrison Restaurant at Fort Harrison State Park will be open only for outdoor dining on the patio starting Sunday.

Swimming at beaches within the park system will be allowed, but public pools will not open this weekend.

The campground at J.E. Roush Lake Fish & Wildlife Area was flooded at the time of the announcement. For updated information on that site, residents can call 260-468-2165.

While camp stores, saddle barns, boat rentals and similar locations are scheduled to open, they may have shorter than usual hours.

The parks’ office will be closed, but permits for lakes, horse tags and bicycle riding can be purchased at entrance gates or online.

All buildings and facilities will be following social distancing guidelines.