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Staunton River State Park ranks best in state

Visitors ranked Staunton River State Park the best Virginia State Park for overall customer satisfaction, according to results from Virginia State Parks’ Your Comments Count surveys. 

The park recently received a certificate recognizing their  accomplishment from the Office of the State Park Director in Richmond. It was presented to park staff by Craig Seaver, state parks district operations director for the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation.

“Both permanent and seasonal park staff should be congratulated for their dedication in attaining this top ranking,” said Tim Vest, district manager for state parks in Southern Virginia. “A lot of training and dedication goes into providing the level of operations and customer service for which Staunton River State Park is noted.” 

According to Vest, many of the park’s part-time seasonal employees return to the park to work year-after-year maintaining continuity and excellence in park operations.

Virginia State Parks emphasize customer satisfaction in all areas, including camping and cabins, nature, hiking, biking and equestrian trails, swimming, restrooms, bathhouses, programs and customer service. Park visitors are encouraged to offer feedback on their experiences by completing the Your Comments Count surveys available in every park. 

The surveys are tabulated and an annual report produced by Dr. Vincent P. Magnini of Virginia Tech’s Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

In 2012, a total of 8,466 visitors completed the paper-and-pencil surveys. The annual report offers detailed information regarding user profiles and preferences with specific suggestions for operations needing improvement.

In addition to the overall ranking, Staunton River topped the list for satisfaction for activities and programs, cultural and historic programs, gifts and souvenirs and park signage.

 “These surveys suggest that visitors to Staunton River State Park are enjoying their stay,” said Adam Layman, acting Staunton River State Park manager. “We hope these results, along with word-of-mouth, will encourage their friends and neighbors to come join in the fun.”

Staunton River State Park is one of Virginia’s six original state parks opened in 1936, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and the Virginia Landmarks Register.

Virginia’s 35 state parks are managed by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. 

For more information about Virginia State Parks activities and amenities or to make reservations in one of the more than 1,800 campsites or 300 climate-controlled cabins, call the Virginia State Parks Reservation Center at 800-933-7275 or visit www.virginiastateparks.gov.