Great Smoky Mountains National Park to participate in national fee-free days 

A panoramic view looking north from the observation tower on Clingmans Dome one can see Blanket Mountain on the far left, Cove Mountain and Bluff Mountain near the center, and Sugarland Mountain and Mount Le Conte on the far right. Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

GATLINBURG, Tenn.—To celebrate the first day of National Park Week, Great Smoky Mountains National Park will take part in fee-free day on Saturday, April 22. Park visitors will not need to buy or display a parking tag that day.  

National Park Week is an annual celebration that encourages people to discover the places, programs, experiences, and stories of the National Park Service. The Smokies will also participate in the three other National Park Service fee-free days in 2023: the anniversary of the Great American Outdoors Act on August 4, National Public Lands Day on September 23, and Veterans Day on November 11.  

The Smokies parking tag program went into effect on March 1, requiring all vehicles parked longer than 15 minutes anywhere in the park to display a valid tag. All revenue generated from the program stays in the park to improve the visitor experience, from trail maintenance and increased custodial services to more education programs and emergency responders.  

Visitors who wish to buy a weekly or annual tag on fee-free days may continue to do so online, in the park, and at various locations in park communities. Park rangers will continue their parking enforcement efforts on fee-free days, such as issuing warnings and citations for vehicles parked in marked no parking areas. 

About Brad Jones

Brad is the Owner/Operator of BBB TV 12, and has been with the company since August of 1996. Brad is a 1987 graduate of Coalfield High School and a 1995 graduate of the University of Tennessee College of Communications. He won the 1995 broadcast production student of the year award. Brad worked at Shop at Home, Inc. a home shopping network that was located in Knoxville, TN from 1993 - 1995 and then at Via TV (RSTV, Inc.) from 1995 - 1996. After some freelance work in Nashville, Brad joined the BBB Communications staff in August of 1996. A short stint at WVLT TV as a news photographer was in 2001, but he continued to work at BBB TV as well. Brad is married to Nicole Jenkins Jones, a 1990 graduate of Oak Ridge High School, who works at Oak Ridge Gastroenterology and Associates in Oak Ridge. They have 3 kids, Trevor Bogard, 27, Chandler 22, and Naomi 13. On December 12, 2013 they welcomed their first grandchild, Carter Ryan Bogard. Brad is also the assistant boys basketball coach at Coalfield High School for the past 11 years. In 2013-14 the Yellow Jackets won their first district title since 1991 and just the 4th in school history.

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