Michigan's National Parks Back in Business

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EMPIRE, Mich. (AP) -- Michigan's four national parks are back in business following Congress' approval of a budget deal that reopened the federal government.

Officials with Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Isle Royale National Park and Keweenaw National Historical Park said Thursday they're up and running.

Although all national parks were officially off-limits during the 16-day partial shutdown, the closure was widely ignored at Sleeping Bear Dunes, where people made frequent use of hiking trails.

But officials said barriers that had limited access in some places were being removed.

Also reopening are Michigan's national forests. Ken Arbogast of Huron-Manistee National Forest said its campgrounds are closed for the season but offices will reopen Friday to handle matters such as issuing permits to cut firewood.

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