Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Prairie Jubilee celebrates the tallgrass prairie Sept. 27

Prairie grasses
 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Experience the sights and sounds of Missouri’s tallgrass prairie during the Prairie Jubilee at Prairie State Park near Mindenmines on Saturday, Sept. 27. Sponsored by Missouri State Parks, the event will be held from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. All events are free and open to the public.

Guests can spend the day enjoying family-oriented, fun and educational activities and entertainment. Visitors to the event can participate in the living history loop, which includes an Osage Indian lodge, hunters and trappers, a foam cannon, a spinning wheel, a one-tent school and games.   Entertainment during the event includes an old-time medicine show, a bison chip throwing contest and a performance of nature-themed music from WildHeart.

Guests can also see how the Battle of Island Mound was fought with viewings on the hour. Guided tours will be given throughout the day to view the bison. In addition to the activities, the park’s nature center offers many interpretive displays about the prairie, and several trails of varying length offer the chance to explore the prairie on your own.

A smoked bison lunch, provided by the Liberal FFA, Cloud’s Meats and Prairie State Park, will be available to purchase. The Liberal Area Civic Group will sell desserts and beverages. Wildflowers from the Missouri Wildflower Nursery will be available to purchase.

Guests can start the festivities early on Friday, Sept. 26 with stargazing at the park. At 7 p.m., visitors can learn about the constellations in the night sky and look for some deep space objects as well. It is suggested that guests dress for cooler evening temperatures.

Prairie State Park is located 35 miles north of Joplin near Liberal. All traffic should enter from the north. Take Highway 43 to Highway K, turn left on Highway P, then left on NW 150th Lane and continue to the park entrance. For more information, call the park directly at 417-843-6711. For information about state parks and historic sites, visit mostateparks.com. Missouri State Parks is a division of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.