State Park campers ready to visit federal campgrounds at Rend Lake

REND LAKE, IL (KFVS) - As the clock continued ticking down to our nation defaulting on our debt payments, and the federal shutdown still in force, campers at Wayne Fitzgerrell State Park were keeping a close eye on things on Capitol Hill.

By mid afternoon on Wednesday the U.S. Senate had reached a deal on both issues. Now it's up to the U.S. House of Representatives to seal the deal and deliver it to President Barack Obama.

An end to the shutdown could also spell an end to the lockout of campers in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers campgrounds on Rend Lake.

"I sure would move back, no question about it," said Gary Burns of Centralia said. "Price wise it's half the price of over here in the state park. And you've got better access to the boat ramps. When the state raised their prices they lost all of their business. There wouldn't be anybody over here now if the corps parks were open."

Some of the campers with reservations came on down to the lake this week knowing that the government shutdown was still in force.

They're hoping the government shutdown will end in time for them to enjoy their time at the lake.

"We're down here camping and we've got a two week reservation," said Ron Wegener of Belleville. "So hopefully we can pick up and move tomorrow if they pass things tonight, we'll be over in Gun Creek."

Some campers though aren't interested in going anywhere else on the lake, irregardless of what happens on Capital Hill.

"We probably will stay in the state park," said Tom Rhodes of Texico."I don't think we'll move over there. We've only got a couple of weeks of camping. I just can't see moving over there for that, we'll just stay here."

Once the government shutdown does end the federal campgrounds and boat ramps at Rend Lake will reopen.

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