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U.S. Forest Service Waives Fees On Veterans Day
Updated November 10, 2016 7:17 AM
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(UNDATED) - The U.S. Forest Service is waiving fees at most of its recreation sites on Veterans Day through November 13.

The fee waivers are offered in cooperation with other federal agencies under the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act.

Day-use fees will be waived at all standard amenity fee sites operated by the U.S. Forest Service. Concessionaire operated day-use sites may be included in the waiver if the concessionaire wishes to participate.

"We wholeheartedly salute the men and women who represent the nearly 22 million American Veterans who have served their country in the military," said U.S. Forest Service Eastern Regional Forester Kathleen Atkinson. "As we do throughout the year, we encourage veterans and their families to take advantage of their national forests and grasslands to enjoy all the benefits the outdoors provide."

The Forest Service also honors active duty military members year-round with the free Interagency Annual Military Pass honored at all Forest Service, National Park Service, Bureau of Reclamation and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service sites charging entrance or standard amenity fees.

Contact your local Forest/Prairie directly to learn if your destination requires a fee, and if that fee is waived.

Fee waiver days support the goals of President Obama's America's Great Outdoors initiative, which encourages all Americans to connect with the outdoors, and first lady Michelle Obama's "Let's Move Outside," which urges children to get outside and be active for good health.

Traditionally, fees are not charged on 98 percent of national forests and grasslands, and approximately two-thirds of developed recreation sites in national forests and grasslands can be used for free.

Many recreation opportunities such as camping, sightseeing and hiking can be enjoyed throughout the year at no cost.

The U.S. Forest Service is an agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, a mission of sustaining the health, diversity and productivity of the nation's forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations.

The Forest Service's Eastern Region includes 20 states in the Midwest and East, stretching from Maine, to Maryland, to Missouri, to Minnesota.

There are 17 national forests and one national tallgrass prairie in the Eastern Region. For more information, visit www.fs.usda.gov/R9.

The U.S. Forest Service manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and private landowners, and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world. Public lands the Forest Service manages contribute more than $13 billion to the economy each year through visitor spending alone.

Those same lands provide 20 percent of the nation's clean water supply, a value estimated at $7.2 billion per year.

The agency has either a direct or indirect role in stewardship of about 80 percent of the 850 million forested acres within the U.S., of which 100 million acres are urban forests where most Americans live. For more information, visit www.fs.fed.us.



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