“Visitors are going to be on their own until the shutdown ends,” Laurel Rematore, Great Smoky Mountains Association (GSMA), CEO.
Smoky Mountain Park Facilities Close With Government Shutdown.
“Visitors are going to be on their own until the shutdown ends,” said Laurel Rematore, Great Smoky Mountains Association (GSMA), CEO. “We are encouraging people visiting the park to prepare for a lack of public use facilities such as restrooms, trash pickup and visitor center staffing.“
GSMA (a nonprofit partner of the Smokies) had been providing short term funding to the park which ended January 1st. The association provided a $51,000.00 donation which kept 15 rangers on the job and the Sugarlands, Oconaluftee, and Cades Cove visitors centers open through the holidays.
“Sorry folks park facilities are closed!” National Lampoon’s Vacation.
One park visitor told HeySmokies, “It feels like that moment in the Chevy Chase comedy favorite “Vacation” where the entire family has driven across county in the family truckster to Wally World only to find the park closed. This time it is no joke though.”