New Jersey Offering Free Access to State Parks as COVID-19 Vaccine Incentive

By: Kaitlyn Kudriavetz, Follow South Jersey Child Welfare Intern

Photo courtesy of New Jersey

SOUTH JERSEY — All New Jersey residents who provide proof that they received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by July 4 will be granted free access to all of New Jersey’s state parks this year, courtesy of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s new “Vax and Visit” campaign.

The State Parks Vax Pass, which is comparable to the Annual State Parks Pass, allows for free access to all 51 New Jersey state parks, as well as access to forest facilities that charge walk-in or parking fees. The pass is valid through December 31for those who take advantage of this COVID-19 vaccine initiative.

For those who have already purchased their Annual State Parks Pass, the Department of Environmental Protection is ready to refund passes for those who can prove they have received at least their first dose of the vaccine. These refunds do not extend to cover Mobile Sport Fishing Vehicle permits or National Park Passes.

“With continually improving public health indicators, we want every New Jersey resident to get a State Parks Vax Pass and get out to enjoy our incredible State Parks with their families and friends,” Acting Commissioner of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Shawn LaTourette said. “A free State Parks Vax Pass is just one small way that we can thank our fellow residents for taking good care of themselves and each other by getting vaccinated against COVID-19.”

Those interested can visit this site and sign up to get a pass or get a refund.

This article was produced by a Follow South Jersey news intern thanks to a grant provided by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation through the New Jersey Health Initiatives program to create hyper-local news to meet the informational and health needs of the City of Bridgeton, N.J.