Vicksburg National Military Park is beginning to increase recreational access to park grounds and tour road

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Vicksburg, MS (06-25-2020)-– Following guidance from the White House, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state and local public health authorities, Vicksburg National Military Parkis increasing recreational access by opening the park tour road to vehicles. The National Park Service (NPS) is working servicewide with federal, state, and local public health authorities toclosely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and using a phased approach to increase access on a park-by-park basis.

Beginning June 27, Vicksburg National Military Park will reopen access to:

• Vehicle use of the park tour road

• Pedestrian access to the Vicksburg National Cemetery

With public health in mind, the following facilities remain closed at this time:

• Main Visitor Center.

• USS Cairo Museum and ramp approaching the area around the USS Cairo

• The Shirley House area

• Park restrooms

In addition, visitors will find fewer picnic tables in the park picnic areas. When using park picnictables, we encourage visitors to take CDC recommended precautions for frequently touchedsurfaces, such as wiping them down with EPA approved sanitizing wipes, before and after use.

For safety reasons the following areas remain closed indefinitely.

• Grant Avenue from the Sherman Avenue access to Union Avenue remains closed to vehicles

• Grant Avenue from the Sherman Avenue access to and including Grant Circle is closed to vehicles and pedestrians

• Union Avenue from Grant Avenue to the USS Cairo Museum is closed to vehicles and pedestrians

• The Vicksburg National Cemetery is closed to vehicles and the area within the chain link fence is closed to vehicles and pedestrians

“The health and safety of our visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners continues to be paramount,” says Park Superintendent Bill Justice. “At Vicksburg National Military Park our operational approach will be to examine each facility function and service provided to ensure those operations comply with current public health guidance and will be regularly monitored. We continue to work closely with the NPS Office of Public Health using CDC guidance to ensure public and workspaces are safe for visitors, employees, partners, and volunteers.

”While these areas are accessible for visitors to enjoy, a return to full operations will continue to bephased and services may be limited. When recreating, the public should follow local area healthorders, practiceLeave No Trace principles, avoid crowding and avoid high-risk outdoor activities.

TheCDC has offered guidance to help people recreating in parks and open spaces prevent thespread of infectious diseases. We will continue to monitor all park functions to ensure that visitorsadhere to CDC guidance for mitigating risks associated with the transmission of COVID-19 and take any additional steps necessary to protect public health.

Details and updates on park operations will continue to be posted on ourwebsite social media channels. Updates about NPS operations will beposted

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