MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) - For Bill and Alix Walczak of Holland the next two weeks will be all about sitting back and relaxing at PJ Hoffmaster State Park.
And while they relax, the Walczaks are also helping push state parks to an overnight visitor mark not reached since 2005.
In 2011, it was close: 956,030 visitors spent the night at a state park, up from 848,623 in 2010. Officials expect to pass the 1 million mark later this season, in late August or early September.
The increased numbers are a good sign for the parks -- and maybe a good sign for Michigan jobs.
"I think it's going to get bigger and bigger," Walczak said, "because with less and less jobs, we're going to have to cater to the visitor."
The number of daily visitors is up as well - up 17% at Hoffmaster alone.
The weather is an obvious factor in visitor numbers. But the DNRs two-year-old Recreation Passport program is also getting some credit.
The program offers $10 yearly passes you can buy at the park or tag onto your license plate tab bill.
"I think the Recreation Passport is helping get people into the state parks because they're more affordable," said Hoffmaster State Park manager Pat Whalen.
In a tight economy, that adds up.
The Walczaks are used to shelling out close to $50 just to get their vehicles into a state park.
"We have three vehicles, we have a passport on each one. That's 30 bucks," said Bill Walczak.
Not only has the Recreation Passport made the parks more affordable, the program has also raised $5.8 million in new revenue for state parks.
Even though the Passports are less expensive, they're bringing more money through the volume of sales.
In front of a festive downtown crowd at Rosa Parks Circle.
Two people were taken to the hospital after one vehicle crossed the center line, causing a head-on crash in Ada Township Friday night.
Mirror parts found at the scene indicate it may be a 2005 Chevrolet Uplander.