Original post: The partial shutdown of the U.S. federal government means the Blue Ridge Parkway is officially closed (it’s a national park), although the road will be open. It also means that the government wants concessionaires to shut down, including the Pisgah Inn. The inn is on the parkway and affords travelers rooms, food and, importantly, a place to stop and use the bathroom. Which is a key reason why inn operator Bruce O’Connell says he’s bucking the closure requirement and staying open.
From the Pisgah Inn on Facebook:
5. We provide restroom facilities for travelers on the Blue Ridge Parkway, and defacation in the park will be an environmental hazard (no sanitary facilities) that could harm the resources. Our facilities will help prevent this from occurring.
6. Safety and security for the visitors are of paramount concern. The open parkway has various facilities and services in place to ensure the safety and security of the visitors traveling the road (the Blue Ridge Parkway). Pisgah Inn is part of that system.
7. We in no way wish to belittle our President or our Congress. We in no way mean any disrespect to the National Park Service. This is a matter of safety and security for the public as well as protection of the Park environment. Our mission and mandate require us to take this action, and our private funding allows us to do so.
Under my contract, NPS has the authority to suspend operations “to protect area visitors” or “protect the resource.”
Thank goodness! Someone who finally understands the real needs of tourists.
These people are top notch. I thought that before this happened, and this only solidifies my opinion.
Darn it. I was going to go up there just to support their self-governance.