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Palisades-Kepler State Park to open April 23

Palisades-Kepler State Park to open April 23

  • 4/21/2021 1:09:00 PM
  • View Count 2260
MOUNT VERNON – Palisades-Kepler State Park, in Linn County, is set to open its gates on April 23, after several months of work to remove damaged trees, downed limbs and clearing other debris caused by last August’s Derecho storm.
Caves at Maquoketa Caves State Park open April 15: Tips to plan your visit

Caves at Maquoketa Caves State Park open April 15: Tips to plan your visit

  • 4/6/2021 12:36:00 PM
  • View Count 1741
Visitors to Maquoketa Caves State Park can fully explore the park’s caves starting April 15, 2021 after being closed for more than a year due to COVID and winter bat hibernation. Located in eastern Iowa’s Jackson County, Maquoketa Caves State Park is one of Iowa’s most popular outdoor destinations, with the largest cave system in the state, gorgeous scenery and unique geological formations drawing thousands of visitors each year.
Derecho damaged trees focus of proposed salvage timber sale at Walnut Woods State Park

Derecho damaged trees focus of proposed salvage timber sale at Walnut Woods State Park

  • 2/10/2021 6:47:00 AM
  • View Count 620
The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is hosting a virtual public meeting to outline a proposed salvage timber sale in Walnut Woods State Park on Feb. 24, at 6 p.m. The salvage timber sale involves trees damaged from the derecho winds in August 2020. Derecho winds damaged multiple trees within the park, which now pose a risk to park users. Each tree was evaluated according to the Iowa DNR tree risk assessment procedure.
Campground hosts needed for upcoming recreation season

Campground hosts needed for upcoming recreation season

  • 1/26/2021 12:07:00 PM
  • View Count 4564
The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is seeking people who enjoy the outdoors, camping and meeting new people, to consider becoming volunteer campground hosts for the upcoming recreation season.
Iowa DNR plants more than 100,000 trees on public lands in 2020

Iowa DNR plants more than 100,000 trees on public lands in 2020

  • 12/29/2020 11:39:00 AM
  • View Count 861
The Iowa DNR reached a milestone goal to plant at least 100,000 trees on state-managed lands in 2020. The tree plantings commemorate the 100th anniversary of the National Association of State Foresters, as well as the 100th anniversary of Iowa state parks.
It's almost New Year's! Join the First Day Hike Challenge

It's almost New Year's! Join the First Day Hike Challenge

  • 12/29/2020 11:37:00 AM
  • View Count 1268
It’s time to start 2021 the right way – in an Iowa state park! Join the 2021 First Day Hike Challenge through the digital State Park Passport. The challenge takes the place of traditional guided hikes due to COVID-19.
Join the First Day Hike Challenge in Iowa State Parks

Join the First Day Hike Challenge in Iowa State Parks

  • 12/17/2020 1:45:00 PM
  • View Count 2689
DES MOINES – The Iowa DNR and Travel Iowa invite Iowans to participate in the 2021 First Day Hike Challenge to ring in the New Year through the digital State Park Passport. The challenge takes the place of traditional guided hikes due to COVID-19.
Newly launched State Park Passport wraps up successful year

Newly launched State Park Passport wraps up successful year

  • 12/1/2020 12:09:00 PM
  • View Count 1413
The Iowa Department of Natural Resources and the Iowa Tourism Office are wrapping up a successful introduction of the new State Park Passport by announcing grand prize winners to the 2020 promotion.
6 ways to safely "Take It Outside" this holiday season

6 ways to safely "Take It Outside" this holiday season

  • 11/24/2020 3:00:00 PM
  • View Count 1217
With the holiday season starting, the Iowa DNR is encouraging families to find safe ways to spend time outdoors this winter. Please be sure to keep your group small, social distance, and wear a mask when visiting places where social distancing is not possible.
Some facilities at Pleasant Creek State Recreation Area reopen following derecho

Some facilities at Pleasant Creek State Recreation Area reopen following derecho

  • 9/24/2020 9:05:00 AM
  • View Count 572
LINN COUNTY, Iowa -- Campgrounds, cabins and shelters are now open at Pleasant Creek State Recreation Area following the derecho in early August. The trails and the beach remain closed as well as the lodge as DNR staff continue to work diligently to clean up damage left behind by August’s derecho.
Attention Photographers: Showcase your pictures and Iowa state parks in national contest

Attention Photographers: Showcase your pictures and Iowa state parks in national contest

  • 9/15/2020 1:33:00 PM
  • View Count 1675
DES MOINES -- If you enjoy photographing Iowa state parks, the Iowa DNR invites you to enter your photos in the America’s State Parks 2020 Photo Contest, hosted by the National Association of State Park Directors. Photos will feature state parks from Iowa and other states, and could be included in calendars and other publications. 
DNR state parks making progress with derecho damage

DNR state parks making progress with derecho damage

  • 9/1/2020 1:20:00 PM
  • View Count 2690
Three weeks after a devastating derecho tore through a large portion of Iowa, and left major damage to residential neighborhoods, farms and cities, state parks across Iowa continue their clean-up efforts.
Backbone State Park celebrates 100 years with dedication ceremony, sign unveiling

Backbone State Park celebrates 100 years with dedication ceremony, sign unveiling

  • 7/28/2020 12:29:00 PM
  • View Count 1003
DUNDEE, IA – With the 100th anniversary of Iowa state parks in full swing, Backbone State Park celebrated its centennial with a re-dedication ceremony on Friday, July 24. Local community members joined Governor Kim Reynolds, DNR Director Kayla Lyon and park staff for the ceremony, which took place in front of the park’s newly renovated Beach Lodge. 
DNR, IDPH and Polk County Health partner to share tips for safe Fourth of July holiday weekend

DNR, IDPH and Polk County Health partner to share tips for safe Fourth of July holiday weekend

  • 7/1/2020 12:26:00 PM
  • View Count 1779
DES MOINES, Iowa – As the Fourth of July holiday weekend quickly approaches the forecast predicts very warm weather which will draw thousands of people to state parks, beaches, lakes and rivers. The DNR along with the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the Polk County Health Department are partnering to share some safety tips to help keep you safe this holiday weekend.
Are you loving Iowa state parks? 6 ways to show you care when you visit

Are you loving Iowa state parks? 6 ways to show you care when you visit

  • 6/30/2020 2:17:00 PM
  • View Count 3243
This summer, Iowans are flocking to state parks in record numbers and enjoying their outdoor amenities and natural spaces. With extra visitors, state parks need more help to stay beautiful, ensure people are safe, and take care of natural resources. Here’s 6 easy ways you can help care for Iowa state parks when you visit:
Take a walk in Iowa State Parks: 20 Walks in 2020

Take a walk in Iowa State Parks: 20 Walks in 2020

  • 6/2/2020 11:46:00 AM
  • View Count 5511
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of Iowa state parks, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources DNR partnered with three organizations, the Iowa Walking Club, the Nebraska Wander Freunde Trailblazers, and Iowa Parklands, to create 5k and 10k walking routes in 20 Iowa state parks.
DNR investigating death at Palisades-Kepler State Park

DNR investigating death at Palisades-Kepler State Park

  • 5/24/2020 12:34:00 PM
  • View Count 1249
MOUNT VERNON, Iowa - On Friday, May 22, around 3:45pm, the DNR was notified of a person who had fallen on a trail at Palisades-Kepler State Park and had lacerations to his head.
Modern restrooms, cabins will open Memorial Day weekend in Iowa state parks

Modern restrooms, cabins will open Memorial Day weekend in Iowa state parks

  • 5/20/2020 11:47:00 AM
  • View Count 11672
DES MOINES, IA -- Iowa state parks will open modern restrooms, shower buildings and cabins starting Friday, May 22 in time for Memorial Day weekend. This means campgrounds will be open for all campers, including RVs, pop-ups and tent camping. Youth group campsites will remain closed.
Boil Advisory in place for far southwest Polk County

Boil Advisory in place for far southwest Polk County

  • 5/4/2020 4:05:00 PM
  • View Count 805
WEST DES MOINES—The Southwest Polk Water Service has issued a boil advisory for an area near Walnut Woods State Park in southwest Polk County after a power loss caused a drop in water pressure Saturday night.
Iowa state parks extend closures into May

Iowa state parks extend closures into May

  • 4/24/2020 3:26:00 PM
  • View Count 15350
The DNR is extending closures of campgrounds and other park facilities through May 14, 2020 to help protect the health of visitors and staff during the COVID-19 health emergency. State parks and forests remain open for day-use opportunities, but visitors are reminded to strictly abide the social distancing rules and not gather in groups.
Caves at Maquoketa Caves State Park to remain closed through at least April 30

Caves at Maquoketa Caves State Park to remain closed through at least April 30

  • 4/14/2020 2:16:00 PM
  • View Count 1404
MAQUOKETA - The caves at Maquoketa Caves State Park will remain closed through April 30, in accordance with Governor Reynolds’ social distancing efforts. The trail system for the park’s most popular caves involves narrow boardwalks and handrails, making it difficult for visitors to maintain physical distances of at least six feet. Visitors can access the rest of the park while the caves are closed. 
Iowa state parks reduce some amenities as part of COVID-19 response

Iowa state parks reduce some amenities as part of COVID-19 response

  • 3/28/2020 1:42:00 PM
  • View Count 8316
Iowa state parks are continuing to look at ways to help protect the health of visitors and staff during the COVID-19 health emergency. Iowa state parks are still open. However, please be aware of the following operational changes, effectively immediately, before visiting a state park.
Caves closed seasonally for bat hibernation at Maquoketa Caves State Park

Caves closed seasonally for bat hibernation at Maquoketa Caves State Park

  • 3/24/2020 12:05:00 PM
  • View Count 1638
MAQUOKETA - The caves at Maquoketa Caves State Park will reopen to the public after bat hibernation season on April 15. The popular caves are closed annually from Oct. 15 to April 15 to protect hibernating bats. Visitors have access to the rest of the park while the caves are closed. 
A message about Iowa State Parks' response to COVID-19

A message about Iowa State Parks' response to COVID-19

  • 3/18/2020 3:25:00 PM
  • View Count 13016
We greatly appreciate your support and trust. In accordance with CDC guidelines and state recommendations pertaining to COVID-19, we want to  share with you important information about Iowa state parks. 
DNR to close Olofson, Banner shooting ranges

DNR to close Olofson, Banner shooting ranges

  • 3/18/2020 2:45:00 PM
  • View Count 1186
Des Moines, Iowa - The Iowa Department of Natural Resources has closed the Olofson shooting range, near Big Creek State Park, and the Banner shooting range at Summerset State Park,  through March 31.
Trumpeter swan soiree returns to central Iowa Feb. 15

Trumpeter swan soiree returns to central Iowa Feb. 15

  • 2/9/2020 2:05:00 PM
  • View Count 1124
West Des Moines, Iowa - The public is invited to a Trumpeter Swan Soiree, celebrating North America’s largest waterfowl species, on Feb. 15, from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., at Walnut Woods State Park, in West Des Moines.
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