The closure of national parks from sea to shining sea isn't just a disappointment to the millions of tourists who visit them each year. It's also a kick in the gut for the small business owners who run the shops and kiosks that depend on the tourists to stay in business.
"It's a horrifying proposition," said Ohwnn (her full name), who runs Tours in the Glades in Florida City. The company employs four seasonal guides and one year-round guide. If Everglades National Park stays closed longer than a week it could cost her company upward of $20,000.
"If the park stays closed, it's bankruptcy," Ohwnn said.
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Hundreds of small businesses serve the 278 million visitors to the National Park System. Though each business may have only a handful of employees, if tourists can't come to the parks because of the shutdown, those workers could be out of a job.
Fred Pagles, owner of Zion Cycles in Springdale, Utah, noticed a steady stream of traffic on the road Tuesday as visitors left Zion National Park.
He said he had to cancel reservations and turn away walk-ins. His shop can weather a shutdown, he added, but only for about a month, and he expects to lose several thousand dollars.
"We're a small business," said Pagles, who employs four. "For us it's a lot."