Text Size:   A+ A- A   •   Text Only
Site Image
Visitors to Farewell Bend State Recreation Area can now park for free

May 26, 2017

Huntington OR -- The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD) has ended the $5 day-use parking fee at Farewell Bend State Recreation Area to better align with agency policy and meet visitors' needs.

The park is a popular local spot for accessing Brownlee Reservoir, but most of the 137,000 annual visitors use the park as a rest area for a brief stop while traveling.

"Free parking will better accommodate the type of use we're seeing at Farewell Bend," said park manager Jim Hutton. "By ending the day-use fee, we hope to serve more local visitors."

Of Oregon's 255 state parks, 25 charge a day-use parking fee. Parks that offer a strong experience at a major attraction with a good staff presence are considered candidates for a day-use parking fee, and state parks are sometimes added or dropped from the system through a public involvement process known as rulemaking. That process will be used to officially remove Farewell Bend's day-use parking fee later this year, but free parking is effective immediately.

Annual revenue from parking permits purchased at Farewell Bend historically averages $5,000-6,000, used to help defray the costs of maintaining state parks. Funding from other sources will be used to replace the lost day-use fee revenue.

The Oregon State Park system is not funded by general fund tax dollars. The agency's budget comes mainly from user fees, a portion of RV registration fees and funding from Lottery proceeds.