State Parks announces ‘free day’ for Aug. 25

August 24, 2014

NEW – 6 a.m. Aug. 24, 2014

The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission wants the public to know that Monday, Aug. 25, is a state parks “free day.”

Day-use visitors will not need a Discover Pass to visit state parks, including Lake Sammamish State Park and Squak Mountain State Park locally.

The free day is in honor of the birthday of the National Park Service, which was established Aug. 25, 1916.

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State seeks to purchase forest conservation easements

August 17, 2014

NEW – 6 a.m. Aug. 17, 2014

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources is seeking landowners who wish to apply for permanent conservation easements through its Rivers and Habitat Open Space Program.

Since 2002, the state of Washington has invested $3.9 million to purchase easements through the program.

This year marks the first time funding has been provided by the state Legislature since the program was revised in 2013 to include habitat for species protected by the state as threatened or endangered.

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State unveils new online map of public lands

August 12, 2014

The state Recreation and Conservation Office recently unveiled a new online, interactive map of natural resource and recreation lands owned by government agencies.

The statewide map allows people to click on a location and learn which agency owns the land, the number of acres, the main use of the land and the cost of acquisition if acquired within the past 10 years.

Information is provided about land owned by cities, counties, the federal government and three state agencies — the state Parks and Recreation Commission, the Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Department of Natural Resources.

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Outdoor burning banned through Sept. 30

August 12, 2014

As hot and dry weather threatens to bring fire danger to a new high, the Washington State Department of Natural Resources announced Aug. 11 that it is expanding the current statewide burn ban to cover all outdoor burning on DNR-protected lands.

Those who negligently allow fire to spread or who knowingly place forestlands in danger of destruction or damage are subject to possible civil liabilities and criminal penalties under state law.

The statewide burn ban will run through Sept. 30. It applies to all lands under DNR fire protection, which does not include federally owned lands.

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State Parks offers two days of free parking

June 7, 2014

NEW — 6 a.m. June 7, 2014

Washington State Parks has 12 free days in 2014 when visitors are not required to display a Discover Pass to visit a state park, including Lake Sammamish State Park. The next dates are June 7 and 8.

National Get Outdoors Day on June 14 also features a free day of parking.

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Remember fire safety this Memorial Day weekend

May 24, 2014

NEW — Noon May 24, 2014

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources is urging people to exercise caution with fire this Memorial Day weekend.

Wildfire season has started here in Washington, and the department has already responded to more than 80 wildfires across the state.

Memorial Day is traditionally associated with the start of summer, and the holiday weekend typically brings more people outdoors.

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Issaquah is named a Tree City for 21st year

April 9, 2014

NEW — 3 p.m. April 9, 2014

Issaquah was named a Tree City USA for its 21st year today in honor of Arbor Day.

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources recognized 84 cities that have been chosen as a Tree City USA. The department said in a release that cities that earn the Tree City USA title for their efforts in keeping urban forests healthy and vibrant.

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Sasquatch family helps drivers avoid $99 ticket

August 27, 2013

The Washington State Department of Natural Resources has launched a video campaign featuring a Sasquatch family to remind people that a Discover Pass is required when visiting Washington state-managed recreation lands.

The video is available at bit.ly/SquatchFamily.

The Discover Pass is a vehicle access pass required on all Washington state-managed recreation lands. The fine for not displaying a Discover Pass is $99.

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