Reopening planned for state parks

Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism Secretary Stacy Hurst announced that beginning Friday, May 1, that campgrounds at Arkansas State Parks will reopen for RV campers with the following limitations: 

  • Campers must use private recreational vehicles with self-contained bathroom facilities.
  • Camping will be only for Arkansas residents.

Park staff will be checking vehicle license plates for adherence to these guidelines.

“We believe that these precautions will allow Arkansans to enjoy the normalcy of going camping while maintaining appropriate social distancing,” Hurst said.
Tentatively, Friday, May 15, is the target date to reopen other services, including retail shops, exhibitions, lodges, cabins and Rent-A-RV. The date is subject to change, depending upon health and safety considerations, and will include restrictions, such as limits on the number of people allowed inside visitor centers, retail stores and exhibitions. Social distancing will be enforced. Restrictions will be placed on: 

  • Restaurants and food service facilities
  • Museums and exhibits
  • Retail stores, including gift shops and golf-pro shops
  • Visitor centers
  • Marinas and rental equipment stores

After May 15, reservations for cabins, lodges and Rent-A-RV services will be restricted to Friday through Monday to allow for thorough cleanings in between uses. Reservations will continue to be for in-state residents only.

Bathhouses will remain closed. Camping reservations listed under out-of-state addresses are canceled through May 14. All guests, including Arkansas residents with reservations for lodge rooms, cabins, camper cabins, YURTs, Rent-A-RV and Rent-A-Camp are canceled through May 14. Guests without on-board bathroom facilities, including water and electric hookups, also are canceled.

“Arkansas State Parks looks forward to opening all of our facilities and inviting guests from around the state and country in the coming months,” said Parks Director Grady Spann.

Some trails, including those at Pinnacle Mountain, Devil’s Den and Petit Jean state parks, will remain closed. For the latest updates, go to