Visitors to Upper Delaware increased by 8 percent in 2016

Centennial programs and Find Your Park program credited with 'stunning' rise of visitors

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  • There are many activities for visitors to enjoy in the Upper Delaware region, including a brisk hike to spectacular scenery. (Photo by Eric Rowe)

, Pa. — The Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River recorded 264,362 visits in 2016, an 8 percent increase over the 243,246 visitors to the park in 2015.

Superintendent Kristina Heister credited the increase to the Find Your Park national marketing campaign and centennial programming at the park.

"We owe a great deal of appreciation to our community partners who collaborated in offering an array of programs and recreational opportunities within the river corridor,” said Heister.

This trend occurred across the country. Centennial programs resulted in a significant level of public interest and social media engagement with the National Park Service and the National Park Foundation.

“Stunning,” Acting National Park Service Director Michael T. Reynolds said of the 331 million visits counted across the National Park System. “We expected more visitors in 2016 as the NPS celebrated its Centennial with special events and activities, but these numbers really show the depth of feeling people have for their national parks, especially considering that increased visitation was recorded not just at the biggest and best -nown parks but at smaller historical and cultural sites as well.”

Half of national park visitation happened in 26 parks but visitation growth from 2015 to 2016 was also greater in parks that see more modest annual visitation.

Related story"River flow spared by contingency plan":

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