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Missouri’s state parks and historic sites have several events planned for guests, ranging from public meetings to interpretive programs.
- Saturday, Sept. 23: Public Meeting at Big Oak Tree State Park
Park representatives invite the public to a town hall-style meeting at 11 a.m. at the park’s picnic shelter. Park operations and updates will be discussed, along with a time for questions and answers. Big Oak Tree State Park is located at 13640 S. Highway 102 in East Prairie.
- Saturday, Sept. 23: Public Meeting at Bollinger Mill State Historic Site
Public meetings are held for all state parks and historic sites, helping to create two-way conversation between the park or site and its guests. Join the team at the day-use area at 2 p.m. to hear about the current status and future plans for the site. Bollinger Mill State Historic Site is located at 113 Bollinger Mill Road in Burfordville.
Saturday, Sept. 30: Storytelling Event at Towosahgy State Historic Site
Bring your lawn chair or blanket to Towosahgy State Historic Site for a special storytelling event starting at 1 p.m. Daniel Romano will tell stories of Native American and Western history and folklore. Romano has told these stories for the past 18 years, so come out to listen. The event is free and open to the public. Towosahgy State Historic Site is located on County Road 502 in East Prairie.
- Saturday, Sept. 30: Ewing’s Retreat Auto Tour 2023 at Battle of Pilot Knob State Historic Site
Visitors to the site often ask questions about what happened after the Battle of Pilot Knob and the subsequent escape of the Union forces. The retreat from the fort has been of interest for a long time, and in 1995, a map was developed for people interested in learning more. This map is available to the public. Starting at 8:30 a.m., you can follow interpreters along the route taken by the retreating Union forces and learn about the retreat, and several points of interest along the way. The tour will travel the route from the historic site to Leasburg, stopping at interpretation points along the way. Lunch will be on your own in Sullivan. The tour will return to the site via Highway 185, stopping at Potosi to interpret General Shelby’s activities, which were occurring at the same time as the battle. Each party will follow the lead car in procession, moving from each stop to the next. Two 10-person vans for seniors and others who would like to attend but are unable to drive the tour themselves are available. Call 573-546-3454 or email email@example.com to reserve a spot in the van or to RSVP for the tour. The Battle of Pilot Knob State Historic Site is located at 118 E. Maple in Pilot Knob.
The day’s schedule is:
- 8:30 a.m. – Get organized and hand out maps and van assignments.
- 9 a.m. – Leave Battle of Pilot Knob State Historic Site.
- 9:20 a.m. – Arrive at Caledonia. Stop at city fairgrounds on Webster Road to interpret the interaction between Shelby’s cavalry and Ewing’s command.
- 9:30 a.m. – Proceed to Palmer on Highway Z.
- 10 a.m. – Arrive at Palmer. Stop at Palmer church and spring. Interpret rest stop and massacre of six militia men left at the town. Proceed to Palmer Cemetery to visit graves of Civil War veterans.
- 10:30 a.m. – Proceed to Huzzah Conservation Area.
- 11:30 a.m. – Arrive at Huzzah Conservation Area. Stop at the shooting range parking lot to interpret the retreat up the Huzzah Valley into the town of Leasburg. Proceed to Leasburg.
- Noon – Arrive at Leasburg. Interpret the battle and the relief from Union forces arriving from Rolla.
- 12:30 p.m. – Proceed to Sullivan for lunch.
- 1-2 p.m. – Eat lunch.
- 2 p.m. – Proceed to Potosi via Highway 185.
- 2:40 p.m. – Arrive at Potosi. Stop at Walmart parking lot and interpret the activities of Gen. Shelby in Potosi as the battle was going on in Pilot Knob. Proceed back to Battle of Pilot Knob State Historic Site.
- 3:30 p.m. – Arrive at Battle of Pilot Knob and conclude the program.
- Saturday, Sept. 30: Birds over Baker at Sam A. Baker State Park
Discover the world of birds at the park’s day-use area, starting at 9 a.m. This free birding festival features live bird presentations, guided bird watches, and activities for the entire family. Start the day off with the early bird special at Mudlick Mountain Grill. Then at 9 a.m., take a bird walk to observe and learn about birds that are attracted to the park. From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., there will be activities and crafts covering topics including migration, hunting of game birds, birdhouse construction and bird behavior. Bird merchandise will be available for purchase throughout the day from the park concessionaire, GoexploreUS. Wrap up the day with the Raptor Awareness Program beginning at 1:30 p.m. in the park’s amphitheater. World Bird Sanctuary of St. Louis will present their birds of prey program, where guests get a close-up look at raptors, such as hawks, owls and falcons, as they soar over your head during this interactive show. Sam A. Baker is located 4 miles north of Patterson on Highway 143 in Wayne County.
For detailed information on any of these activities, please visit mostateparks.com/events. For more information on state parks and historic sites, visit mostateparks.com. Missouri State Parks is a division of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.