Photo: Maridav/Shutterstock

Californians Can Now Go to Their State Parks for Free on Black Friday Instead of Shopping

by Matt Hershberger Nov 21, 2015

LAST MONTH, OUTDOOR RETAILER REI, decided to close their stores on the infamous Black Friday holiday shopping day in order to give their employees a day off to spend time outdoors. Their “get out of the malls and into the outdoors” message clearly resonated in California, because now many of the state’s famous redwood state parks are going to be offering free admission on Black Friday.

Sponsored by the Save the Redwoods League, 49 of California’s State parks will offer free admission as long as you download a pass from their website, print out, and present it upon entry to the park.

The response has been massive: 16 of the park passes have already sold out.

The Great State of Minnesota has gone a step further: the Governor declared that admission to all of the state’s 76 state parks would be free the day after Thanksgiving.

REI’s #OptOutside campaign started as a genius marketing strategy, but it now has the features of a nascent holiday. Here’s to hoping more states hop on the #OptOutside train! Down with Black Friday! Up with the Great Outdoors!

Update: Oregon’s in, too! All 26 of Oregon’s State Parks are going to be waiving their usual parking fees on Friday.

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