Due to a change in park management from a concessionaire contract back to the state, Roland Cooper State Park will be closed until Oct. 1 for maintenance, the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources announced.
“We are grateful for the partnership with Vista Recreation (concessionaire) over the last seven years,” said Greg Lein, director of the Conservation Department’s State Parks Division. “Going forward we are excited to have our park personnel once again operating the park and working with the City of Camden, Wilcox County and local tourism professionals to promote the region and all that Roland Cooper State Park has to offer.”
Conservation Commissioner Chris Blankenship said the state’s Black Belt region, where the park is located, is no longer being overlooked by travelers seeking a vacation destination within the state.
“An increased interest in outdoor recreation has started to change that,” he said. “We encourage Alabamians and out-of-state visitors to explore the many recreational opportunities at Roland Cooper and in the surrounding areas.”
The park offers several overnight accommodations including 47 improved and 13 primitive campsites, six tiny house style cabins and five two-bedroom cabins.
It also has a new pier that increased the available docking space for recreational boaters and anglers. The T-shaped pier is 160 feet long and 128 feet wide; it is Americans with Disabilities Act compliant.
Hunters and anglers who have trips planned to nearby Wildlife Management Areas, Special Opportunity Areas and State Owned Public Fishing lakes are encouraged to make reservations at Roland Cooper. Other amenities at the park include hiking trails, a rental pavilion, bathhouse and boat rentals.
Roland Cooper was temporarily closed in 2015 due to budget issues and reopened in 2016 under a concessionaire contract with the Arizona-based management company, Vista Recreation.
Overnight reservations that have already been made for the maintenance period will still be honored, the department said.
Austen Shipley is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News.