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More visits to Maine’s state parks during virus shutdown

March 20, 2020 GMT

POWNAL, Maine (AP) — More people than usual are visiting Maine’s state parks this month as residents look for ways to get outside and stay active while maintaining social distance.

The busiest state parks in Maine are seeing an increase in traffic of 30% to 50%, Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry spokesman Jim Britt told the Bangor Daily News. The parks are getting traffic more in line with April vacation week, he said.

Much of the state’s shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic. There have been more than 50 cases in the state so far. For most people, the coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, or death. The vast majority of people recover.

Maine’s state parks’ programs such as guided nature walks have been canceled through April 30. Bradbury Mountain State Park in Pownal and Crescent Beach State Park in Cape Elizabeth are among the parks seeing the biggest attendance growth.

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