Federal shutdown closes National Seashore, other U.S parks

By on October 1, 2013


The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse and its grounds are closed. (NPS)

National Park Service employees will spend this morning buttoning down the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Wright Brothers National Memorial and the Ft. Raleigh National Historic site as the federal government shutdown reaches the Outer Banks.

“The official word is that our beaches are closed to all public entry,” said Cyndy Holda, public affairs specialist with the parks service’s Outer Banks Group.

The NPS is doing what it can to minimize inconvenience to visitors who are already here for the week, Holda said.

Campers at NPS sites will have 48 hours from 6 p.m. tonight to pack up and leave if the shutdown continues.

Charter operations will also have until the end of the day Thursday to wrap things up at Oregon Inlet Fishing Center, which is a park service concession, Holda said.

By the end of the morning Tuesday, Holda and park law enforcement officers will be among the few people who will remain on the job.

Cables or barriers will be put up at off-road vehicle accesses along the seashore, and rangers will make a final sweep of the beaches to make sure they are clear.

Oct. 1 is generally considered the start of the fall fishing season, so the timing of the shutdown could not be much worse.

“It’s unfortunate because it should be a time when we would be gearing up for fall fishing,” Holda said.

The Wright memorial is also popular during the milder fall season.

“We remain hopeful that appropriations will be passed and that further inconvenience to the public can be avoided,” Holda said.

National wildlife refuges, including Alligator River and Pea Island, are also closed.

The shutdown started at midnight after Congress failed to reach an agreement to continue funding.

For more information and updates, see Irene Nolan’s story in the Island Free Press »

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October 11, 2013 9:08 am

Glad to hear our local leaders are stepping up here. Take back this property from the Federal Government! Just because President Obama is having a hissy fit doesn’t mean he has the authority to restrict us to access to our public lands. This a clear abuse of the Constitution, Federalism, and the people’s rights.


October 8, 2013 8:45 pm

that’s supposed to be a frowning face below V


October 8, 2013 8:44 pm

i hear avon pier is closed again



October 8, 2013 9:25 am

Any funding bill that includes that fascist hot mess of corporatism gone awry is NOT a clean bill. But this isn’t about the ACA or the appropriate checks and balances that all funding goes through the House.

What his is about is the Federal Government acting outside of its mandate and authority.

Article One, Section 8, Clause 17, offers the only provision in the Federal Constitution for federal ownership of land. It provides for the creation of Washington, D.C. as the seat of the federal government and allows the federal government to purchase lands in a state with “…the consent of the legislature of the state in which the same shall be, for the erection of forts, magazines, arsenals, dockyards, and other needful buildings.”

This is the only kind of property that the federal government is empowered to own in a state.


October 7, 2013 5:57 pm

Want to know who to blame?

Just look at the guy next to you who voted Republican!

If a simple vote to fund the government were allowed by the Republicans, we would not be in this mess. All 195 Democrats would vote for a clean bill, and there seem to be enough Republicans willing to put country ahead of party to let it pass.

But really, this is just a squall ahead of a Cat 5 if the Republicans don’t allow a clean vote to pay our debts.

After all… what would you say if Obama wouldn’t sign a bill to pay our debts unless a gun control bill was attached?


October 7, 2013 2:24 pm

Dear bbc and Salvo Jimmy,
Thank you for the onsite updates.

Dear politically minded,


October 6, 2013 8:55 pm

avon pier is open.

you can also walk in to the lighthouse beach and the lighthouse site from the road block. just smile and wave at the ranger on hand.


October 4, 2013 11:44 am

@vballer– Thank you for your concern.
Actually my health insurance went down since I was in a high risk pool for a pre-existing condition. Now I can afford the cost since insurance companies now cannot over charge for a silly pre- existing condition. Thank you OBAMACARE!
Why don’t you check it out? Your costs may go down also. From what I have been reading and seeing, healthcare costs are actually going down and now have better coverage. Republicans are actually applying and saving….
BCBSNC sent me info on new laws in effect starting 2014- no matter what plan you may choose-
Ambulatory Services, Emergency Services, Hospitalization, Maternity and newborn care, Mental Health and substance abuse services, Prescription drugs, Rehab service and devises, Lab services, Preventive and wellness services, including chronic disease management, Pediatric services, including dental and vision.
So even with all your complaining healthcare insurance will be better and cover more services.
Quit with the anger. At least they cover Mental Health so all the people who are raging over the new Healthcare Law can get the help they need to manage their anger.
Have a great day! ;-)


October 4, 2013 10:38 am

@smiley! You sir are a prime example of the gimme gimme crowd! Question, how many people do you personally know that has signed up for it? Question 2, how many people do you know that already have health insurance and its going up? Q3, how much is it going up? The answers are that folks already with health care are going to pay alot more so the people that your so happy for an get theirs! Sir, you are a low information voter! I personally know of 2 people that their cost is going up over 200%! I know 4 others that said “#%¥£ Obama, I’m not buy it”! So stick you hand in someone’s else’s pocket, it’s what liberals do best!


October 3, 2013 12:09 pm

OBX voice…….can you reword the heading on this article. You make it sound like the entire island is shut down. It should say federally owned attractions or something like that. One of the Virginia tv stations yesterday reported the island was closed down. Someone down here caught it and gave the station a call about the misinformation they were reporting. The small businesses down here are already hurting from this, we don’t need more.


October 3, 2013 7:32 am

access to the beach in buxton is off old lighthouse road. you can walk through at the cul de sac or at the end of the street.

frisco pier parking lot is open or you can park down some of the streets.

funny how they can’t ‘afford’ to have the parking lot open at the old lighthouse site but can ‘afford’ to pay someone to keep guard at the road block.


October 3, 2013 12:02 am

@ Vballer- Whatever………………. over 5 million people were shopping on Healthcare.gov………. people are excited to get health care coverage. Aren’t you happy for them?
It was so busy the web servers couldn’t keep up with the traffic like most servers that are slammed with millions of shoppers.
Sorry for the employees whose employers are too cheap to offer health care. It isn’t like employers are paying the total amount they get group rates and the employee still pays for most of it.
Have a happy day!


October 2, 2013 4:04 pm

For those with their heads stuck in the sand or maybe somewhere else…..


October 2, 2013 2:44 pm


October 2, 2013 2:41 pm

@ smilely! Have you lost you mind or not open your eyes?? Yeah there are people out of work because of the shutdown. If you follow politics at all, is is very clear the the liberals will not compromise and the republicans have! Also you must have failed civics and dont know what powers are granted to each house and branch of govt! Nor have you kept up with currents events where your beloved leader has granted waivers, extensions and other deals with certain groups that he does not have the authority to do so! Also on currents event are the great number of people that have been laid off or had their hours cut below 30hrs a week so companies can avoid the devistating cost of obamacare! Please inform yourself better before post such lame posts!


October 2, 2013 12:19 pm

This goes to show how far the liberal agenda stretches. How uncomfortable can we make the American people with this type of shut down? It reminds me of my brother, he used to hold me down and twist arm until I yelled uncle. There are more important issues at risk here and I appreciate the folks in Washington standing up for the right values. I am tired of the gov’t going to the trough and getting money for pointless things. Time to set the record straight, there is no reason why the Federal monuments, National parks, etc. should be closed. There are Ranger there right now, working telling everyone that it is closed. Really?
Folks we already lost the ability to visit the White House, now why can’t we visit the WH? So now the National Parks, pretty soon we will be unable to visit the lands of the largest land holder in the US, that would be us, the taxpayers. If you like the big government heavy handedness, you too are part of the problem.

The crusher

October 2, 2013 12:12 pm

Just walk over to the beach there are all of 11 rangers for the entire outerbanks. Should follow the example of the vets at the WW2 memorial and just walk on out there.


October 2, 2013 8:33 am

Sorry for the people out of work because of some teapublican ideology.
Remember who to vote for at the polls next time around.
We must look like a bunch of idiots to the rest of the world with our preaching democracy!!
Medicare and Social Security were hard for some Americans to accept at first too.
I think we should get rid of the Lobbyists and we will have a better government.
Next thing we will have off shore drilling all over our beaches and nobody will come here!


October 1, 2013 7:25 pm

I agree refund for permit must happen! Why doesn’t NC fund reopening>

Salvo Jimmy

October 1, 2013 6:43 pm

There is a vast inconsistency within DOI. Note: NPS and FWS are both in DOI. Drove from Salvo to KHawk about 0930-1030 this AM.

Lots of vehicles parked on shoulder thru Pea Island obviously accessing the beach. All parking areas including New Inlet Boat ramp, visitor center and South end of Bonner were open and in use. Only evidence that a shutdown exists was flag was not flying at visitor center.

North of Bonner, ramp 4 was closed, fishin’ ctr road was not blocked but it also accesses CG station, campground was open as they have 48 hrs to clear out. Ramp 2/Coquina was closed and there was a physical LEO check point on Bodie Light rd, strange. Parking area at old Life Saving station site was closed. Visitor ctr lot at Whalebone was open but flag not flying.. Wright bros Memorial was closed.

BTW the new map out from NPS indicates you can’t go anywhere on the beach, including in front of the villages.


October 1, 2013 6:06 pm

SunScents and Eddie! Shame on your ignorance! Fact one, the republicans have offered three other deals. Fact two, Harry Reid is pure junk as is our president that will talk to terrorist and not republicans! Fact three, the democrats are calling republicans every name in the book! Fact four, Obamacare will destroy this economy and make criminals out of people that cannot afford the “free health care”! Fact five, Obama has broken federal law and has NO authority NONE to change the law as written! He does not have the Constitutional authority! Fact six, he gave extensions, expemptions to his buddies and Congress and their aides that we cannot get! There are many more facts that low information voters like yourselves need to learn before you make such vicious and uninformed comments!!!! Shame on you!


October 1, 2013 1:47 pm

The US Constitution says we share the expense of things we share – BEACHES, police, courts, military, public roads. (see below)

It also says we don’t give money to specific groups, for their specific welfare – eg, corn farmers, bankrupt Goldman Sachs, people needing HEALTHCARE, people with red hair, any specific group. Politicians, trying to buy votes, disobey this all the time.

Well this time, healthcare for specific people is being opposed, as it should be. And how is the Obama administration fighting back? By closing the general public BEACH.
“The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States” BEACHES are general welfare. Obamacare is welfare for specific people.


October 1, 2013 12:50 pm

For the record I think Rep. Walter Jones was voting to prevent the shutdown.

As for NPS “stealing” CHNSRA, rather it was the hunt clubs desperate to rid themselves of their obligation to pay property tax on storm-ravaged land, getting the federal government to build dunes as part of that deal which enabled development of the Outer Banks to what it is today. Maybe the NPS has long since spent that political capital, you can decide that, but let’s get the history correct.

This is a good read–well, when the NPS website comes back up after the government reopens, maybe:


Sadly, Google does not have that cached :(


October 1, 2013 11:18 am

We picked the wrong week to come to Ocracoke. Everyone at our b&b is kinda scratching their heads wondering what to do…guess we will have to be sneaky about hitting the beach.


October 1, 2013 11:16 am

Great….shut down the government just so they can deny people healthcare.


October 1, 2013 11:09 am

So I’m sitting on my hammock in Ocracoke and wondering what this means for my plans to go to the beach today.


October 1, 2013 10:21 am

What happened to “government for the people”.
Truly unbelievable.


October 1, 2013 10:17 am

Really too bad as I may be furloughed; however, will not be able to enjoy my “free time” with a trip to Hatteras for some beach fun while I have to burn vacation hours as this shutdown lives.



October 1, 2013 9:03 am

North Carolina please reclaim this stolen land in Cape Hatteras and make it a state park! NPS is not wanted or needed here. They have done nothing except acts of terror by killing innocent animals, closing beaches to cause a complete and total business collapse on the island. If the federal government is broke, claim back this land that they stole from us in the 50′s. my family lost 100′s of acres like many did. Get rid of them!!


October 1, 2013 8:50 am

It is such a shame that once again, the Republican Party is responsible for hurting our local economy. Many of us have problems with the Affordable Care Act. But, shutting down our Federal Government is NOT the way to fix things.


October 1, 2013 8:01 am

Who do I see for my Orv refund? Seems to me I paid to use the ramp that will now be chained.


October 1, 2013 7:21 am

I think that it’s a shame that the government does not have any concerns about those who have put them in office to represent them. They are greedy, childish, and outright mad to have let something like this happen, so that it affects the people to this degree! Shame on you Republicans!


October 1, 2013 6:28 am

Just like the 80s, folks cut the chains. Most likely will happen again.

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