Largely without power since Superstorm Sandy hit October. 29, 2012, Holly River State Park in Webster County now has full electrical service restored. Park Supt. Ken McClintic is hopeful that both the campground and cabins can be reopened by May 3.
During the restoration efforts, operations were maintained out of an isolated structure on the park property that still had enough power to handle telephone calls and emails from the public regarding park conditions and reservations.
Tri-County Electric was mobilized under an emergency purchase order to rebuild the entire electrical system at Holly River. New power lines were buried instead of strung on poles above ground.
"Restoration of power to the entire park is now complete," said Brad Reed, district administrator for the West Virginia State Parks system. "It is great news for Holly River staff and engineering section employees who continue to work on clean-up and recovery as well as for the many Holly River patrons."
Telephone service is not restored at this time. Park contact is still limited to one phone at the temporary office. Email is the best way to contact Holly River. That address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
The park also has been dealing with the challenge of removing fallen trees, brush and other debris from public areas such as the campground, trails and streams. Davey Tree Service is under contract to assist with these services at both Holly River and Audra State Parks. Muddlety Trading Company is working on stream cleanup.
Reed says cleanup of park grounds and trails will be ongoing through much of the summer into fall. Visitors to both Holly River and Audra state parks must be cautious and observant when hiking.
"It will be months, perhaps years, before the trail system regains pre-October 29 conditions," Reed said.
"There has been an outpouring of concern and understanding from both in- and out-of-state patrons," McClintic said. "We are humbled by how much this park means to so many people. The work had some setback with the hard winter and additional freezing snow in late March, but the staff has worked diligently to get the park open for the upcoming season. We're making progress"
For information about Holly River State Park, visit www.hollyriver.com or email email@example.com.