Blue Ridge Parkway

Photo of the Blue Ridge Mountains
Ken Thomas / Wikipedia

For a century the National Park Service has established and preserved parks, seashores and memorials across the country. Sites range from Yellowstone National Park to the César E. Chávez National Monument.

In 2015, the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, both partially located in North Carolina, were two of the top three most visited sites in the National Park system.

However, growing concerns about climate change and big maintenance bills threaten preservation efforts.

A picture of the sun setting behind the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Ian Britton / Freefoto.com

AAA is forecasting the busiest July 4th travel weekend since 2001, in part because of a recovering economy. But with a tropical storm headed toward the Outer Banks, travelers might end up making other plans.

It's not yet clear whether Tropical Storm Arthur will make landfall in North Carolina, but Dare County is readying its hurricane action plan, just in case.

On the other side of the state, tourism is up already in Asheville this summer.

Altumnal via of mountains (fall)
steviep187 via flickr

  

Just because you don’t work for the federal government does not mean you are immune from the effects of the shutdown.

Tourism in North Carolina could be particularly hard hit by National Park Services closures. Host Frank Stasio speaks with News & Observer reporter Martha Quillin; and Phil Francis, former superintendent of the Blue Ridge Parkway about the effect of the shutdown on tourism along the coast and in the mountains.