Mason Neck State Park welcomes new manager


Lance Elzie is the new manager of Mason Neck State Park in Lorton. (Credit: Virginia State Parks)

Virginia State Parks (VSP) announced its new manager for Mason Neck State Park in Lorton last week. 

Lance Elzie, who has over 20 years of experience working in the outdoor industry as a guide, instructor, educator and park manager, has replaced Reinhardt Gray, who retired earlier this year. Elzie has been the manager of Leesylvania State Park in Woodbridge for more than a year and will temporarily split his time between both parks until the manager position at Leesylvania is filled.

VSP's Potomac District Manager Ken Benson praised Elzie for "making great strides" at Leesylvania during difficult staffing times.

Before joining the state park system, Elzie worked for NOVA Parks as the park manager for Bull Run Marina, Fountainhead Regional Park, Sandy Run Regional Park and Webb Sanctuary. He originally moved to Virginia from North Carolina, where he was the outdoor recreation manager for Jackson County and helped create some of the state's first universally accessible parks and outdoor recreation programs. 

Elzie is a wilderness medicine instructor for the National Outdoor Leadership School and an instructor trainer with the American Canoe Association, where he currently serves on the steering committee for the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion working group. He holds a bachelor's degree in experiential education and wilderness leadership from Brevard College and a master's degree in parks, recreation and tourism management from Clemson University. Born in Kentucky and raised in Florida, he also served in the U.S. Marine Corps and studied outdoor education in New Zealand.

Elzie enjoys running, adventure races and triathlons, as well as spending time with his son hiking, fishing, kayaking and canoeing.

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