MDC to offer Passport to Discovery

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Missouri Department of Conservation will offer PEEP Passport to Discovery at parks across southwest Missouri March 17 through March 25.

"We will have a passport book that can be picked up at any PEEP location," said Tim Smith, Roaring River State Park naturalist. "If an individual visits six of the eight sites they will receive a PEEP patch.

"This is a way to increase attendance at each of the participating sites," said Smith.

In addition to Roaring River State Park, southwest Missourians are encouraged to visit George Washington Carver National Monument, the Missouri Department of Conservation Joplin office, the Nathan Boone state historic site, the Neosho National Fish Hatchery, Prairie State Park, the Southwest Kansas Nature Center and Wildcat Glades Conservation and Audubon Center.

According to Smith, all of the participating sites will offer their normal programs throughout the week. Roaring River will offer programs on Saturday, March 17, Sunday, March 18, Saturday, March 24 and Sunday, March 25.

Programs scheduled to be held at Roaring River on each Saturday include: the Deer Leap Trail Hike, 10 a.m.; hatchery tour, 2 p.m.; Explorer Hour, 3 p.m.; and Basic Campfire Building, 4 p.m.

"Explorer Hour is an hour devoted to teaching park visitors how to become Missouri State Park explorers," said Smith.

On Sunday, March 18 and Sunday, March 25, Roaring River will offer the following programs: Roaring River State Park History, 10 a.m.; hatchery tour, 2 p.m.; and Raccoons, 3:30 p.m.

PEEP passports will be offered at no charge. The program is designed for families with elementary-aged children. Passports will be limited to one per family.

Passports can be obtained at the Ozark Chinquapin Nature Center, which is located off of Highway F near campground #3 in Roaring River. The center's hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.

For more information of PEEP or any interpretive programs offered at Roaring River, call the nature center 847-3742.

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