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State parks enjoyed record attendance in 2015

Attendance at North Carolina’s state parks set a new record in 2015. George Olsen has more.

The Governor’s Office reports attendance at the state’s 39 parks was over 17.3 million in 2015, up from 15.6 million in 2014. It’s the third straight year attendance numbers have set a record. Of the 39 parks, 30 reported increased usage last year over the prior. Jordan Lake State Recreation Area in Chatham County led the way with 1.6 million visits, while five other state parks… including Fort Macon… having over a million visitors. Several parks reported significant increases in attendance, including Gorges State Park whose visitor numbers were up 48 percent from 2014.  State Parks Director Mike Murphy hopes for a fourth straight year of record attendance as 2016 marks the 100-year anniversary of the state park system. I’m George Olsen.

George Olsen is a 1977 Havelock High School graduate. He received his B.A. in Broadcast Journalism from the University of South Carolina in 1982 where he got his first taste of non-commercial radio working for their student station WUSC. After graduation he worked about five years in commercial radio before coming to work at Public Radio East where he has remained since outside of a nearly 3-year stint as jazz and operations coordinator at WUAL in Tuscaloosa, Alabama in the early 1990s. On his return to eastern North Carolina he hosted classical music for Public Radio East before moving into the Morning Edition host position and now can be heard on All Things Considered. He also hosts and produces The Sound, five hours of Americana, Roots Rock and Contemporary Folk weekday evenings on PRE Public Radio East News & Ideas, and is a news and feature producer for Public Radio East.