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Maryland Department of Natural Resources Offers Resources to Veterans

Benefits, Discounts Provided for Those Who Serve

Photo of the Maryland Veterans of Foreign Wars State Honor Guard, led by Major Calvin Mitchell.

Members of the Maryland Veterans of Foreign Wars State Honor Guard present the colors Nov. 6 at a Veterans Day commemoration in Tawes Garden.

In recognition of Veterans Day, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources announces its numerous resources available to veterans.

In February 2019, joined by more than 100 veterans, Governor Larry Hogan proclaimed 2019 as the Year of the Veteran in Maryland. This yearlong observance honors United States veterans and military families and celebrates their contributions to Maryland and our country.

“We can never do enough to raise awareness of the brave service and sacrifice our United States veterans and families have made for Maryland for our nation,” said Governor Hogan. “Our state is proud to be home to 380,000 veterans, including 8,000 World War II veterans and an additional 30,000 active military, 19,000 reservists, and more than 6,000 members of our National Guard. These heroes serve as a reminder every single day of the immeasurable cost of war and the immense price of freedom.”

The Department of Natural Resources is proud to employ nearly 90 employees who are veterans and offers several programs and special rates for military veterans, active duty service members, and prisoners of war.  

“In honor of Veterans Day, and to thank those who serve, we want to remind Maryland’s veteran community of the many resources available to them through the Maryland Department of Natural Resources,” said Secretary Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio.

A list of programs run by the department and its partners is below. For more information, veterans should visit the department’s online Military One-Stop Shop.

Discounts for Veterans at State Parks:

Any member of the Maryland National Guard and all active duty military personnel who display their active duty military identification card to the gate attendant at any Maryland state park day-use area will have their day-use entrance service charge waived.

All applicable day-use entrance charges are waived year-round for all veterans. The waiver applies to both resident and out-of-state veterans. 

Unique Opportunities for Veterans at State Parks: 

The Wounded Warrior and Veteran Outreach Program provides our servicemen and women with unique experiences in Maryland state parks, including:

Additional Outdoor Recreational Options for Veterans:

The Greenwell Foundation Inc., working with the Maryland Park Service, offers veterans opportunities to participate in its inclusive and accessible programs including horseback riding, River Riders Kayaking, Vets Helping Vets, and Operation Warrior Refuge. 

Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating (CRAB), partners with the department to offer specially arranged sailing and racing events for Wounded Warriors and their families. In cooperation with the Paralyzed Veterans of America, CRAB has offered two-day sailing clinics specifically for learning to sail and race. Additionally, they provide weekday and weekend sails for recovering warriors; their family and friends.

Fishing and Hunting License Benefits for Veterans:

    • Residents on active duty with the armed forces who are on leave with official leave orders, may fish without a fishing license in Maryland.
    • A complimentary lifetime hunting license is available to Maryland residents who are 100% service-connected disabled veterans or former prisoners of war.
    • Any Maryland veteran who has received a Purple Heart for injuries sustained defending our nation qualifies for a 50% discount on Maryland hunting and fishing licenses.
    • A complimentary lifetime hunting license is available to Maryland residents certified as a former prisoner of war or a 100% service connected disabled American veteran (Veterans Administration documentation required).