RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia State Parks were a popular destination over the Memorial Day weekend.

The parks saw a record number of visitors over the May 25-28 holiday period, with attendance approaching 315,000. That’s an increase of 16 percent compared to the Memorial Day weekend of 2011.

In fact, two parks — Lake Anna State Park in Spotsylvania County and Shenandoah River State Park in Warren County — ran out of parking spaces and had to restrict access.

The Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation says the holiday success is part of a trend this year. Through May 31, attendance in state parks totaled 2.6 million, up 13.7 percent from last year.

Parks officials say more people are looking for close-to-home, affordable vacations, and parks fill the bill.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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