Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul.
~ John Muir ~
As the young girl at the park entrance scanned my card, she politely stated, “I’m sorry mister, but your card expired.” I quickly realized I forgot to renew my New York State Empire Pass at the end of 2018. The annual renewal process formerly took place in March of each year. However, since the State transitioned from a window sticker to an ID card, the renewal period changed as well. Unfortunately for me, I’m a creature of habit to a certain extent and I can’t seem to get on-board with the new time frame.
So, it was back to the house to log into my New York State Parks account and pony up $75 for 2019.
This gem of a card is now transferable between vehicles. Gone are the days of separate registration for each car. This always seemed a bit silly to me as there is often more than one person in your family would like to join you for a walk, hike or bike ride. Thus, you had to consciously take the vehicle with the sticker in the window to avoid the $8 daily parking fee.
State parks are truly magnificent - a real treasure. Thank goodness for forward thinking individuals like Edward Harriman and Robert Moses. In New York State alone, there is a plethora of parks, beaches, golf courses, etc, at your disposal. Your Empire Pass affords you access to any one of these locations. Here are a few NYS facts & figures:
350,000 acres of public land
215 State Parks
67 developed beaches
35 swimming pools
40 boat launch sites
28 golf courses