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'Love Our NY Lands' campaign encourages visitors to respect state parks

The new Department of Environmental Conservation campaign encourages visitors, particularly at Catskill and Adirondack parks, to practice responsible recreation.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — New York has launched a campaign encouraging visitors to help respect state parks.

The state's Love Our NY Lands campaign encourages visitors, particularly at Catskill and Adirondack parks, to practice responsible recreation.

"With the launch of the Love Our NY Lands campaign to encourage visitors to plan ahead, visit responsibly, and practice Leave No Trace principles, all New Yorkers and visitors can help ensure these special places are protected for future generations to enjoy," Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said in a statement Sunday.

The outreach and education campaign was sought by the Adirondack High Peaks and Catskills advisory groups as more and more visitors sought to enjoy the great outdoors during the COVID-19 pandemic.

DEC officials say hiker preparedness and safety, sustainable use, and responsible trip planning will be encouraged.

"Last year tens of thousands of New Yorkers were desperate to get outside for a respite from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic," Seggos said. "And while we saw a significant uptick in 2020, the number of visitors to state lands, particularly the Adirondack and Catskill parks has been increasing for several years.

"This is a welcome challenge, but one we must address through a variety of strategic and creative means."

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