INDIANA - Indiana State Parks is encouraging Hoosiers to get outside on Black Friday in a campaign they call "optoutside." They are doing the campaign because state park officials say a life outdoors, is a life well-lived. Ginger Murphy, Deputy Director for Stewardship for Indiana State Parks says the idea came from outdoor gear store, REI about three years ago.
"If you want to go shopping in the morning, go shopping, take sometime to go outside and destress and just enjoy the outdoors and visit a state park or spend the whole day outside," Murphy says.
Murphy says the campaign is really a reminder for people to capitalize on the benefits that come from spending time outdoors.
"So we really just want to encourage people to use our state parks as places to relax and have a good day, take a hike, spend some time with your family," Murphy says. "Just optoutside."
Murphy says some state parks have gate fees, but there are coupons posted on the Indiana State Parks Facebook page that will get visitors free admission. There is also a coupon that offers 20 percent off at Indiana State Park Inn restaurants.
"One of the great places to visit in Northwest Indiana is Indiana Dunes State Park," Murphy says. "There are great hiking trails. Even at this time of year it's just great to be on the beach and watch the waters of Lake Michigan and and enjoy yourself but there is a hike that day, a high Dunes hike on Friday that's being offered by our Interpretive Staff if people want a guided walk."
She says Indiana Dunes and Potato Creek State park in North Liberty, which is within driving distance from the Region, and Prophetstown State park in West Lafayette, are also good options to visit.