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Here's your chance to talk to the seashore superintendent

Cape Hatteras National Seashore Superintendent David Hallac has invited the public to come to a meeting and ask questions or discuss the upcoming summer season, management practices, and the ongoing issues with stormwater and flooding in the Cape Point area -- or anything else on the minds of islanders or visitors.

The event is scheduled for Monday, May 2, from 5 until 6:30 p.m. in Room 307 at Cape Hatteras Secondary School on Highway 12 in Buxton.
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Report details economic benefits of Outer Banks national parks

A new National Park Service report shows that 2,743,338 visitors to the Outer Banks Group of national park sites in 2015 spent $179.8 million in communities near the parks. That spending supported 2,815 jobs in the local area and had a cumulative benefit to the state economy of $225.4 million. 
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NPS will offer full-moon Cape Hatteras Lighthouse tours through the summer

Grab your flashlight and experience a lighthouse at night by joining the National Park Service on a Full Moon Tour of the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. Hear stories of keepers of old, view the working light close up in the lantern room, and catch the reflection off the Atlantic Ocean of the newly-risen full moon as you stand on the lighthouse balcony. 
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UPDATE:  State tosses cold water on NPS  plan to address flooding

Stormwater at Cape Point has finally dried up, but so has the hope that the state will approve a National Park Service proposal to counter further flooding at the campground and ORV access ramps.

Officials with the state Department of Environmental Quality and the Division of Coastal Management told NPS Outer Banks Group Superintendent Dave Hallac on Monday that a park plan to drain the flood-prone areas behind the dunes would violate a rule that forbids connecting water bodies and another standard that protects wetlands. 
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Park Service offers plan to address flooding in Cape Point area

Epic rainfall since September has left the area around Cape Point, one of the most beautiful fishing and camping spots in the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, inundated with water and inaccessible to all but determined pedestrians.

Finally, the National Park Service Outer Banks Group has proposed a plan to solve the persistent drainage problem at Cape Point, a dynamic corner of beach and wetlands bordered by the Atlantic Ocean and Buxton Woods maritime forest. 
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A conversation with the seashore superintendent....WITH AUDIO 

The spring's news and issues at the Cape Hatteras National Seashore were the topic of the Radio Hatteras interview show, "To the Point," on Sunday, April 17. The guest for the interview was seashore Superintendent David Hallac. 
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Newly established ORV corridor allows for continued Cape Point access

Cape Hatteras National Seashore officials established an off-road vehicle corridor near Cape Point at 7 a.m. this morning to allow drivers to bypass a handful of American oystercatchers that are engaged in nesting behavior.

This is the first time that the seashore has used the new buffer regulations for bird-nesting activity. The regulations were enacted last summer in mid-June as a part of changes in the ORV plan that were required by legislation passed by Congress in December 2014.
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NPS honors volunteers at Outer Banks parks

During National Volunteer Week, April 10-16, the National Park Service Outer Banks Group celebrates the volunteers who work at Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Wright Brothers National Memorial, and Fort Raleigh National Historic Site. This past year these volunteers donated a total of 19,856 hours. 
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Seashore establishes pre-nesting areas for shorebird breeding season

To protect breeding habitat for shorebirds, Cape Hatteras National Seashore staff members  are implementing pre-nesting restriction areas on several beach locations.

During the winter, staff members conduct annual assessments of preferred breeding habitat for piping plovers, Wilson’s plovers, American oystercatchers, and colonial waterbirds. All pre-nesting areas will be marked by April 15, and all informational maps and supporting information will be posted at:
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NPS campground season will be extended until Nov. 28

The season will be extended for all four campgrounds in the Cape Hatteras National Seashore this season. The campgrounds -- Oregon Inlet, Cape Point, Frisco, and Ocracoke -- will open April 15, 2016 and will remain open until Nov. 28.

The campgrounds have usually opened in April, but have closed anywhere from Labor Day -- for Cape Point -- to the end of October for Ocracoke.  Frisco and Oregon Inlet have closed around Columbus Day in past years.
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Park Service makes it easier, cheaper to get ORV permit online

Cape Hatteras National Seashore officials have announced that they are making changes in how and where the seashore issues its off-road vehicle permits -- changes that will make it easier and cheaper for visitors to get their permits online.

"The changes are being made to increase user convenience, provide new options for park visitors wishing to purchase an ORV permit, and increase efficiency by reducing the cost associated with collecting permit fees," the Park Service said in a news release. 
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Park Service Centennial celebration starts to pick up steam

Across the country, the National Park Service is celebrating its 100-year anniversary this year with many  programs and special events.

Close to home, this year-long Centennial Celebration is gaining some steam, as a host of initiatives are gradually being put into play at a number of sites along the Outer Banks, including Hatteras and Ocracoke islands. 
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Lighthouses will be open for climbing from April 15 - Oct. 10

The Bodie Island and Cape Hatteras Lighthouses will be open for climbing this year from Friday, April 15, through Monday, Oct. 10.

Ticket sales begin daily at 9 a.m. with the last tickets sold at 4:30 p.m. at each site.

Climbing tickets are $8 for adults and $4 for senior citizens (62 or older), children 11 years of age and under, and those holding a National Parks and Federal Recreation Lands Access Pass. Tickets are available on a first-come, first-served basis and can be purchased in-person at the site only on the day of the climb. There are no advance ticket sales.
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Seashore releases environmental document on ORV rule changes

Cape Hatteras National Seashore released today, for public review, an environmental assessment (EA) for the consideration of modification to the final rule for off-road vehicle management. Seashore officials are planning five public meeting to consider the changes to the ORV special regulation.
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