PEI

MLA wants provincial campgrounds in rural areas open to more visitors

A Liberal MLA is concerned a limit on the number of campers in P.E.I. provincial parks this year will hurt businesses near Cedar Dunes Provincial Park.

Robert Henderson concerned limits on campgrounds such as Cedar Dunes will hurt local businesses

Provincial campgrounds are only open this year to Islanders who booked before the end of March. (Shutterstock/Corepics VOF)

A Liberal MLA is concerned that a limit on the number of campers in P.E.I. provincial parks this year will hurt businesses near Cedar Dunes Provincial Park.

Only Islanders who booked seasonal sites at provincial campgrounds before the end of March are able to camp in those parks this year.

Tourism Minister Matthew MacKay has said the idea is to drive campers to private sites that will be facing "a very bleak tourism season this year."

In the legislature Friday, Robert Henderson, the MLA for O'Leary-Inverness, said only 15 of 79 sites are occupied at Cedar Dunes in western P.E.I. He said he's worried about the impact on businesses around Cedar Dunes that depend on having a busy campground.

Henderson is calling on the province to open up sites to more visitors at provincially run campgrounds in rural areas.

"I don't know many folks that we're making vacation plans or a staycation at the height of a pandemic, and now with the borders open to Atlantic Canadian visitors, the campground remains at a reduced occupancy. The Cedar Dunes campground is a vital lifeline for the area."

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With files from Angela Walker

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