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DEEP Pilots Parking Reservations System at Squantz Pond State Park as Part of Implementation of New State Law

Purchase Advance Reservations for Summer Holidays and Weekends, Now Available at

(HARTFORD) — Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) is pleased to announce that it is piloting a new online reservation system to improve the visitor experience and park management on summer weekends and holidays at Squantz Pond State Park in New Fairfield.  

Squantz Pond State Park, a very popular destination, frequently fills to capacity on summer weekends and holidays, leading to crowded conditions and travel disruptions for visitors turned away when the park reaches capacity. To help improve the visitor experience and avoid these operations challenges, DEEP is piloting a new reservation system to enable visitors to secure a parking spot up to 14 days in advance for summer holidays and summer weekends beginning May 18. Visitors are strongly encouraged to reserve a parking spot ahead of their visit. The new system allows visitors to check the online system to see if any parking spots remain and to plan their holidays and weekends accordingly. Once reservations are filled, no one will be allowed to walk or drive into the park without a reservation.

DEEP is piloting this new reservation system at Squantz Pond following a state law passed last year (Public Act 23-43) that required DEEP to develop a capacity limit for the park. The law authorizes the agency to close the park to new visitors, whether entering by foot, boat, or vehicle, once capacity is reached. While the capacity limit will apply throughout the year, visitors only need to use the parking reservation system on summer holidays and weekends.

Those who want to visit Squantz Pond State Park on a summer weekend or holiday are strongly encouraged to pre-purchase a reservation, which will be available online 14 days in advance of their visit. To secure a reservation, simply go to and search “Squantz Pond” and complete the checkout process. A $2 reservation fee will be charged in addition to the state park entrance fee, which is free for anyone entering the park in a Connecticut registered vehicle, and $22/vehicle for those entering in an out-of-state registered vehicle. Once park reservations sell out, no other visitors will be allowed to walk or drive into the park.

This popular park often fills to capacity, and DEEP wants visitors to be able to plan in advance in order to have a more safe and enjoyable experience. Pre-purchasing a reservation will allow visitors to plan their trip – knowing they will be able to enter the park upon arrival. It also provides visitors with the convenience of being able to arrive at any time after the park opens at 8:00 a.m., eliminating the need to line up early for a spot.

Important Reservation Details:

  • Book in advance! Squantz Pond State Park historically fills to capacity on busy summer weekends and holidays.
  • Reservations can be made online at, by searching for “Squantz Pond,” or by calling toll free 1-877-668-CAMP (2267).
  • Parking reservations generally can be made up to 14 days in advance and for up to 2 vehicles at a time.
  • Reservations will be made available online starting today for the upcoming weekend starting May 18, and available for Memorial Day weekend.
  • A $2 transaction fee will be charged with every reservation, in addition to the park entrance fees, which are free for anyone entering in CT registered vehicle and $22/vehicle for those entering in an out-of-state registered vehicle.
  • If reservations don’t sell out, same-day reservations can be made online or at the park entrance gate until 3:00 p.m. on the same day of your desired visit.
  • Once reservations are sold out, no additional visitors will be allowed to walk or drive into the park.
  • No cancellations or refunds will be issued.

Plan ahead for a great day: pre-purchase your pass at or visit to find another great state park to explore.

“Squantz Pond State Park is a beautiful and popular location for picnickers and swimmers during the summer. The park routinely reaches capacity on hot summer weekends and holidays due to the limited number of parking spots available. This reservation system will enhance the outdoor recreation experience by bringing predictability for park visitors who will be able to reserve a parking spot. In addition, the reservation system will provide a benefit to those we cannot accommodate by letting them know in advance that all parking spots are sold for a given day, so those visitors can then adjust their destination to another state or local park for the day,” said DEEP Commissioner Katie Dykes.

State Senator Stephen Harding (R-30th District), Ranking Senator on the Environment Committee, said, “We want people to enjoy this beautiful park in a safe and orderly way. This bipartisan law will accomplish those goals, and we thank DEEP for its ongoing work to promote our wonderful state park system.”

“I appreciate DEEP working with park staff, First Selectman Lindsey, State Police, New Fairfield Police, Senator Harding and myself in putting together this plan to assure the enactment of the Legislation goes smoothly,” said State Representative Pat Callahan (R-108th District). “The implementation of the reservation system is a great idea and hopefully will help alleviate overcrowding inside the park and the dangerous situation we had in past years on roads adjacent to the park.”

“We are excited about this new program and believe it will help our residents and visitors both easily and safely access one of New Fairfield's most prized treasures in Squantz Pond State Park,” said New Fairfield First Selectman Melissa Lindsey. “We are grateful for the work of DEEP, Rep. Callahan, and all others who helped make this development possible. New Fairfield remains committed to maintaining Squantz's beauty and accessibility while also making our residents' and visitors' safety a priority.” 

The online reservation system is available starting on May 15, 2024, for reservations on weekends and holidays beginning May 18, 2024.

Established in 1913, the mission of the Connecticut State Park system is to provide natural resource-based public recreational and educational opportunities through a system of state park and forest recreation areas, environmental education centers, and nature centers which provide an understanding of, access to, and enjoyment of the state’s historic, cultural, and natural resources. 
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