Many DNR campgrounds full, but prime options remain


EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT) – Memorial Day weekend is traditionally one of the busiest of the year, and last weekend was no exception. Entering the post-holiday weekend, which has traditionally been slower for camping, DNR campgrounds have even more reservations than for Memorial Day weekend.

The majority of camping options at most state park properties are already sold out.

“This weekend is a bit unusual,” said Ginger Murphy, deputy director of Indiana State Parks. “More often the first weekend after Memorial Day is a little quieter as people finish school, and have and go to graduation and open houses. But this year is obviously different, and we are off and camping in 2020.”

As far as camping at state parks, online reservations for camping can be made until 2 p.m. the day of camping. Walk-in registration for camping is also allowed on the day of arrival. 

As of Thursday afternoon, O’Bannon Woods State Park is the only park property where there might still be electric sites available for the weekend. Campsites for equestrian use are still available at Brown County, Tippecanoe River, and O’Bannon Woods state parks, and at Salamonie Lake and Deam Lake State Recreation Area (SRA).

First-come, first-served primitive camping sites are available at Greene-Sullivan, Yellowwood and Morgan-Monroe state forests. First-come, first-served camping is also available at Glendale Fish & Wildlife Area (FWA), as well as at J.E. Roush Lake and Willow Slough FWAs.

All those camping and considering camping are reminded to practice social distancing, and to choose a different weekend to visit if they are not feeling well or have been in contact with someone with COVID-19.

If going to a DNR property for only day use, keep in mind that access is managed based on parking availability to help ensure that guests have a positive experience. A good way to avoid waiting in line or being asked to visit elsewhere nearby instead is to keep up with DNR/State Parks on Twitter and follow DNR/State Parks and property pages on Facebook for near-real-time updates regarding access. In addition, Indiana Dunes State Park is a part of a regional beach parking information line, 219-395-1003, which you can call to hear the status of beaches along the Lake Michigan shoreline in Indiana.

State Park inns have plenty of rooms available in all seven locations and cabins at Brown County, Turkey Run and Pokagon state parks are also available for the weekend. Inn restaurants are open for dining with menu-based meals available. Make reservations at or 877-LODGES-1 (877-563-4371).

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