Missouri is a beautiful state. And for the last 75 years the Missouri Department of Conservation has sought to protect this beauty.
By a 2-to-1 margin, voters passed an amendment to the state constitution establishing the department on Nov. 3, 1936. Today the department receives more funding through sales tax revenue from forest activity and fishing, hunting and wildlife recreation than from the state.
From 2009 to 2010 hunting, fishing, forest and wildlife recreation in Missouri generated an estimated $11.4 billion in economic activity, supporting 64,186 jobs.
The Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center marked its sixth anniversary in May. Center visitors can view artifacts and enjoy interactive habitat exhibits. Additionally, the hiking trails of County Park North are a nice way to spend some time outdoors. There's also a stocked pond where children 15 and younger can check out free poles and bait to catch a fish.
To find out more about the center and its free events, call 290-5218 or find them online at mdc.mo.gov/regions/southeast/cape-girardeau-conservation-nature-center.
Congratulations to the department on this significant anniversary. Your efforts help make it possible for all to enjoy the state's plant and wildlife beauty.