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Archive for September, 2012

CORP (USACE) QUESTIONED ON KERR LAKE SUMMER LAKE LEVEL

Kerr Lake Park Watch has recently received serval inquiries about the water levels of Kerr Lake this summer and spring.  We have taken the most articulate and are posting for your information.  A message has been forwarded to the Kerr Lake office of the US Army Corps of Engineers with the offer of a response, comments and clarifications.  The following comments come from Kerr Lake user Jim Arnold.

“My (Jim Arnold) research on the Corps site finds that the lake level dropped below the guide curve on April 8 and other than a short 3 week period, has continued to drop until well below the drought alert level by July 20 until now. What drought caused this?

The inflow for July, August and September was equal to or more than the same period last year. Why have a curve that is purported to support all uses for the lake and then let it plunge well below it? The period that we are talking about here is the supposed recreational period when the curve was meant to maintain a usable level, yet since April it has been drawn down to their own drought alert level.

The millions of dollars of revenue brought in to the six counties and numerous communities surrounding the lake is drastically reduced by this draw-down and in this economy it should be protected and not jeopardized. Even though there are numerous purposes listed as the official purposes for the establishment of the lake in the flood control act of 1944 (including recreation in the original draft and actually listed first) it seems that the greed by the federal government to produce electricity has rocketed to the top of the list at the expense of all others.

Deserted campgrounds (13 of them) and docks on dry land are not conducive to recreation. All they need do is follow their own curve and attempt to maintain the 299.5 for the recreational season and we are all winners. This is not a single purpose project so why treat it like one?”

Kerr Lake Park Watch always welcomes questions and comments regarding the parks and public facilities that surround the lake and the lake itself.  Make your comments directly here or send your information to info@kerrlakeparkwatch.org.

Posted in: KLPW - MAIN NEWS, KLPW - US ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS, KLPW - WATER RELATED, KLPW - Water Safety

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PARK CHANGES ENTERTAINMENT VENUE TO “WHEELS FOR LUNGS” – A Car & Bike Show


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: September 21, 2012



“Wheels for Lungs” Car and Bike Show to Benefit Lung Transplant Research



(CLARKSVILLE, VA) – Occoneechee State Park will host “Wheels for Lungs,” a car and bike show to benefit the Lung Transplant Foundation, on Saturday, Sept. 29. In the event of rain, the show will take place Sept. 30.




On-site registration at the park will take place 8 – 11 a.m., with the event to be held from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Registration fee for show participants is $30, with all proceeds going to the Lung Transplant Foundation. The first 50 entrants will receive a commemorative dash plaque. For spectators, a parking fee of $3 applies.




Organizers expect a wide variety of classic cars, muscle cars, and customized bikes to participate in this inaugural benefit. This family friendly event will also feature a DJ, a moonwalk for kids, a food vendor with hotdogs and hamburgers, various other vendors, and some surprise guests.




Event organizer Stan Medlin explained, “After I received a double lung transplant two and a half years ago, I wanted to do something to raise more money for research.” Since he loves cars and bikes, he formulated the idea for “Wheels for Lungs.” Medlin, who has a home in Clarksville, figured that Occoneechee State Park would be the perfect site for the event. The park offers plenty of parking, as well as camping and cabins for those who want to stay overnight.




According to Medlin, rejection is a big problem for lung transplant recipients. The Lung Transplant Foundation engages in research to determine the cause of rejection and improve outcomes for recipients.




The award-winning Virginia State Parks are managed by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation.




For more information about Virginia State Parks activities and amenities or to make reservations in one of the more than 1,800 campsites or 300 climate-controlled cabins, call the Virginia State Parks Reservation Center at 800-933-PARK or visit www.virginiastateparks.gov.



Contact: Scott Shanklin, Occoneechee State Park Manager, (434) 374-2210, scott.shanklin@dcr.virginia.gov or


– 30 –





Pat Eastwood


PR & Marketing Specialist


Virginia State Parks


1170 Staunton Trail


Scottsburg, VA 24589


Office:   434-572-2190


 


Posted in: KLPW - MAIN NEWS, KLPW - Occoneechee State Park, KLPW - Park Entertainment/Events

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KERR LAKE SUPERINTENDENT RESPONDS TO CAMPERS’ RESERVATION QUESTIONS


Questions:



  1. Are the reservation system charges the same for “parks” as they are for “recreation areas?”

  2. Did NC State Parks shoot itself in the foot money-wise when it stopped the policy of reserving a campsite for a minimum of seven nights versus having the weekends cherry-picked?

  3. “I have a question….Now that we have been using the computer based reservation system for a couple of years, and been allowed to reserve less than seven days per stay, what has been the impact? Has the number of campers increased, has the net revenue increased? I know from my personal experience that it is more difficult to make week-long reservations with this system. I also see the parks nearly empty during the week and full on the weekends. So what does NC Parks say about the change?”

  4. Why am I charged a transaction fee for every day of my camp time? Whether we camp for two nights or seven, there is only one transaction and should be only one charge per transaction?”  

Answers:


1. The transaction fees are the same for parks and recreation areas. The fee is $3 per night/ campsite.


2. System-wide, the ability for campers to make reservations with a minimum of one night has worked well. There may have been a slightly lower number of nights reserved at Kerr Lake, but that is at least partially attributable to campers only having to pay for what they will actually use. The remaining vacant sites are available for use, where in the past, many sites would be reserved but unoccupied during a portion of the renters’ rental period, which prevented other campers from using them.


3. Kerr Lake camping nights did drop a little since the last year prior to having the reservation system (July 1, 2008-June30, 2009) but last year it was only about 3% lower than 2008-2009. System-wide reservations in NC State Parks have increased each year since the reservation system was implemented and trends indicate they will continue to increase. The use numbers are subject to fluctuate from year to year. A number of factors influence fluctuation such as weather, fuel prices and the economy.


As an observation, we have noticed fewer occurrences of campers having unused nights that they paid for now compared to when we had seven night minimum.


I see two things that could make getting 7 day reservations harder now than prior to the implementation of the reservation system. 1. Many visitors are gravitating toward shorter, weekend reservations because that is what they want and need. 2. Visitors can make their reservations as far as 11 months in advance with the reservation system, so they often have to make reservations farther in advance than they used to in order to get the site # and days they want. We used to not accept any reservations prior to the beginning of January.


4. The cost of the reservation system is funded fully with the reservation transaction fees which are $3 per facility per day. This enables N.C. State Parks to have a system that is paid for by the users and not by general taxpayers.



The present system is fair for all users. It is standard across the state, which makes it simpler for users who want to make reservations in a variety of state parks and recreation areas across North Carolina. The system also helps the Division of Parks and Recreation view and understand trends in park use.



I am happy to talk to our visitors about this if they would like to do so. I am generally available at the park office (252)438-7791.






Bryce Fleming


Park Superintendent


Kerr Lake State Recreation Area


6254 Satterwhite Point Road


Henderson, NC 27537


(252) 438-7791


www.ncparks.gov


Posted in: KLPW - Campground Facilities and Improvements, KLPW - MAIN NEWS, KLPW - N C State Recreation Areas, KLPW - Reservation Information, KLPW - Similar Circumstances/Situations at other Locations

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