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Archive for Monday, May 16, 2011

Historic Fort Scott drops park fees

May 16, 2011

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National Park officials recently entertained about 300 elementary students visiting the historic Fort Scott grounds. If a decision to drop the entrance fee is successful, there could be more activity on this one-time frontier outpost.

Chief Ranger Kelley Collins said the $3 fee was imposed starting in the mid-1980s to help support the operations, raising between $20,000 and $25,000 each year.

The fee was dropped May 1, Collins said, in part because it cost the park service more to collect the fee than it brought in.

The Pittsburg Morning Sun reported the historic site, established by the National Park Service in 1978 in southeast Kansas, maintains 13 permanent, full-time staff members. There are no fences around the grounds, making it difficult for staff to collect fees from each visitor.

Collins said she hopes the site’s new policy will attract more visitors to the 1842 post who otherwise might decide to go elsewhere.

A museum on the grounds will have enough money to operate, Collins said, and it is hoped that more visitors will yield more donations to help the historic site with projects

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