Anyone looking for that last minute holiday gift idea may very well consider the gift of the great outdoors, more specifically annual passes to visit Hillsborough County’s Regional Parks to picnic, play or to launch a watercraft at its boat ramps.
“The great thing about this gift is that it truly keeps on giving as they are, of course, for an entire year,” said Hillsborough County Parks, Recreation and Conservation Department Spokesperson John Brill.
Brill said that annual passes, for individuals or families, are good for one year from date of purchase and include park entry passes for $100 (family), $50 (individual), while the boat launch pass costs $100.
Passes are available in person at the regional park office at 15502 Morris Bridge Rd. Cash, checks, money orders, credit cards and debit cards are accepted for annual passes.
 Those who choose not to purchase annual passes will be charged per visit. Daily fees are $2 per vehicle entry, for up to eight people and a $5 fee to launch a watercraft.
Regional parks provide accessibility to diverse natural environments so visitors may enjoy resource based activities such as picnicking, boating, canoeing, swimming, hiking, nature study, photography, horseback riding and camping.
Trails and greenways provide facilities for bicycling, inline skating, running and walking. Parks also offer views of natural Florida providing a perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of daily life.
Adding to the benefits of these parks is the recent addition of canoe and kayak rentals at a number of parks.
In November, E.G. Simmons Park, located at 2401 19th Ave. NW, was be added to the list of facilities offering the service, following Upper Tampa Park, located at 8001 Double Branch Rd. and Lettuce Lake Park, located at 17302 N. Dale Mabry.
Regional Parks include: Alderman’s Ford; E.G. Simmons; Edward Medard; Eureka Springs; Lake Park; Lake Rogers; Lettuce Lake; Lithia Springs; Upper Tampa Bay Park; and various sites of Wilderness Park. Visit for additional information on the Regional Park system.
Residents may also obtain annual passes by filling out the form at and mailing to the Parks Recreation and Conservation Regional Park Office at the address listed on the form. Fax is also accepted at 987-6271. Information may be obtained by calling 987-6240.

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