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Visitors help clean up Padre Island National Seashore during shutdown

Posted at 10:39 PM, Jan 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-09 23:39:04-05

There are stories about deteriorating conditions at other national parks because of the partial government shutdown. Images of mounting garbage and human waste at popular tourist attractions.

Fortunately, things seem to look much better at Padre Island National Seashore.

KRIS 6 News visited the park on Wednesday. Areas that were still open and accessible to visitors and campers were clean, and trash containers and dumpsters were not overflowing.

According to visitors, they’ve taken cleaning and maintenance issues into their own hands.

“It’s up to the people that stay here. a few of us pick up trash. I noticed a lady this morning emptying the trash bin from the restroom,” said Bill Evans, who’s visiting from Arizona. “I’m all for the individual picking up the ball and running with it wherever possible.”

Speaking of the possibility of an even longer shutdown, Evans said about Padre Island National Seashore, “This place is pretty well maintaining itself. Some of these people in these vehicles here have been here several days and it’s working out without all the supervision, the expenditure of government money.”

Still, he told KRIS 6 News that he hopes the park rangers and other federal workers who are impacted by the shutdown will soon be paid what they’re owed.

“I feel for the people. What is it? 800,000 government employees that are going without a paycheck. That’s not right.”

For now, visitors are able to camp on the beach and at Bird Island Basin.