People using state park cabins on weekends in Kansas may pay a little more from now on. People using them during the middle of the week, though, may pay less.
The Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism commission approved the department’s request this week to raise the weekend rates on some of the state’s most popular cabins during the April 1-Sept. 30 peak season.
Linda Lanterman, state park director, said the increases could bring in an additional $80,000 in annual revenue. Basically, cabins that have a 65 percent to 84 percent peak season occupancy rate will see an increase of $20 per weekend.
Cabins with an occupancy rate of 85 percent or more will see an increase of $30 per weekend.
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Most of the modernized cabins at Cheney, El Dorado and other popular state parks would be included in the increased prices that could now run $170 to $260 per weekend, depending on size and amenities. For some cabins, it’s the first price increase in more than 15 years, Lanterman said.
“We were having complaints from people that they couldn’t get reservations,” Lanterman said. “At some places, like Clinton (State Park), some of the cabins have been rented out every weekend.
“It would seem the best solution is to build more cabins, but right now all of our focus for doing that is at Hillsdale State Park. For the short term, we thought it was best to raise the rates a little bit.”
To encourage more midweek usage, Lanterman was granted permission to start giving $5 to $10 discounts for people who book a cabin for at least two days Monday through Thursday.
“This gives people more opportunities to try out our state park cabins when the prices aren’t as high,” Lanterman said.
Cabins already reserved will remain at the old rates.
Duck hunting zones
Tom Bidrowski, Wildlife and Parks waterfowl biologist, opened discussions at the meeting for possible changes in Kansas duck hunting zones and upcoming season dates.
Bidrowski declined to mention any specific possible changes, saying he first wanted to hear from as many waterfowl hunters as possible before the commission votes on any changes at an August meeting near Great Bend.
Bidrowski announced that meetings will be held to help gather public input on these dates at these places:
May 13: Dodge City Family YMCA
May 14: Great Bend, Kansas Wetlands Education Center
May 18: Hartford, Flint Hills National Wildlife Refuge
May 19: McPherson Public Library
May 20: Overland Park, Museum at Prairiefire
May 21: Wichita, Great Plains Nature Center
May 22: Erie, Tony’s Function Junction
All meetings begin at 6:30 p.m. Bidrowski can be reached at email@example.com or 620-566-1456.
Reach Michael Pearce at 316-268-6382 or firstname.lastname@example.org.