State park entry free on Black Friday

DOVER — Instead of heading to a mall, Delaware State Parks and outdoor recreation retailer Recreational Equipment Inc. want people to discover the outdoors.

The two are partnering up #OptOutside on Nov. 25, when admission to all of Delaware’s state parks will be free of charge. REI initiated the “Opt Outside” program last year to encourage children and families to enjoy the outdoors, rather than participate in Black Friday retail sales.

The $2.4 billion co-op shut all 149 of its doors on Black Friday and gave each of their 12,287 employees a paid day off so they could get out from behind the register and get into the great outdoors. According to REI, about 1.4 million people participated nationwide last year.

This year, REI is building on that momentum by inviting the outdoor community to support the concept again.

“We’re thrilled to be a part of such an innovative and exciting movement, and hope to see many families and friends enjoying our parks all day,” said Delaware State Parks marketing director Madison Watkins.

Delaware parks offer more than 100 miles of trails to explore, spectacular locations for bird and wildlife watching and scenic views.

All Delaware state parks gates will open at 8 a.m. Nov. 25. Park offices will be closed. Visitors are encouraged to use the hashtag #OptOutside on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to show their support, and invite their families and friends to join in.

Visit for park locations and more ideas on how to spend the day outside in Delaware State Parks and check out to upload #OptOutside photos.

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