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Parks Matter!

The Friends of Maryland State Parks (FOMSP) believe state parks are public lands that belong to “all citizens” and future generations. Maryland has a population of 5.8 million. Maryland State Parks host over 10 million visitors annually. In addition to visitation, over 6,000 people volunteer to assist in completing many tasks.

Maryland, once a top tier state park system now struggles to sustain itself. A recent estimate of the critical maintenance backlog in Maryland State Parks exceeds $40 million. The key focus of the Friends of Maryland State Parks Foundation is a strong membership passionate about the mission of the organization. These members support volunteerism in state parks, advocate for state parks and fundraising for specific state park projects. The Foundation focuses on investments in our state parks that provide economic value to local economies, nature programs for children, critical maintenance and capital improvements, healthy lifestyles, volunteerism, advocacy and fundraising.

Benefits to the individual citizens

  • Exercise & Fitness
  • Health – Physical, emotional & mental
  • Longevity & life time leisure activity
  • Environmental & outdoor education
  • Development of an environmental stewardship ethic

Benefits to society

  • Family cohesion
  • Low impact vacation & tourism destinations
  • Cultural preservation, harmony & identity
  • Public safety & crime reduction
  • Community preservation, pride & involvement

Benefits to the economy

  • Reduced healthcare costs
  • Increased property values
  • Increased employment
  • Increased tourism
  • Revenue Generation – direct/indirect spending
  • Revenue Generation – federal, state & local taxes
  • Attracts new business


Benefits to the environment

  • Improved air quality
  • Improved water quality in Bay & tributaries
  • Reduced pollution
  • Improved native wildlife habitat
  • Protection of native species
  • Historic & cultural preservation
  • Outdoor classrooms & environmental education


Benefits to the quality of life

  • Improved self-esteem
  • Happiness
  • Stress reduction
  • Sense of community
  • Cultural harmony