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Last week, representatives from Central College, 3M, Lake Red Rock Association, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, were on site at a new natural playscape being built near Lake Red Rock’s North Overlook for a check presentation. Ranger Junifer Kruse says some of the areas features include a playscape pod with a balancing course, eagles nest, sand pit, amphitheater, and living willow tunnel. The check donated by 3M was for $30,000 and will be used to complete phase I of the project, and leftover funds will help to begin additional phases.
On Saturday, November 2, 2013, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers hosted a natural
playscape construction day with Vermeer Corporation at Lake Red Rock. Vermeer
Corporation provided the labor to construct the project as part of their desire
to give back to the community for their 65th Anniversary celebration.
Approximately 80 volunteers made up of Vermeer employees and their families
participated in the event. A variety of playscape components were constructed
on Saturday: the framework for a willow tunnel and nearly life size eagle nest
made from willow whips; an amphitheater; balance course; nature trail; sundial;
and play archaeological dig. The efforts by the Vermeer volunteers were
Central College students, led by environmental studies
professor Anya Butt, developed the concept ideas for the playscape on paper and
assisted with implementation of the playscape elements during the
A natural playscape is a type of play area that uses natural
elements like boulders and logs to create places for children to explore
nature. The playscape, located along the Volksweg Trail near North Overlook
Campground, is the first of its
kind at Lake Red Rock with only a few other
examples in the State of Iowa.
To all active members of the Red Rock Lake Association: there are two board seats open. If you have a love of the lake and would like to get involved, please let us know of your intention to run for the board. Prospective board members should submit a short biography via email at firstname.lastname@example.org and what you would like to accomplish on the board.
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – In conjunction with its plans to build a hydroelectric facility at the Red Rock Dam in Marion County, Iowa, the Missouri River Energy Services (MRES) Board of Directors approved a contract for construction of a 7,000-foot extension of the Volksweg Bike Trail near the dam.
Norris Asphalt Paving Co., of Ottumwa, Iowa, was the successful bidder for the bike trail project, which will extend from the Fifield Recreation Area to the Robert’s Creek Trailhead. Construction of the trail extension will begin soon and is projected to be completed in November.
Other features also are planned for the area, including picnic shelters, a playground, a fish-cleaning station, restroom, parking facilities, and water fountains. MRES is still developing a plan for completing those features.
MRES, an organization of 61 municipalities that own and operate electric distribution utilities, plans to begin construction of the hydroelectric power plant in early 2014. The project is slated for completion in late 2016. During construction, the project will provide 400-700 jobs and nearly $250 million of economic benefits to the four-county region.
The Red Rock Hydroelectric Project will be the second largest hydroelectric plant in Iowa and will provide enough electricity for about 18,000 homes.
(This information was provided from Missouri River Energy Services in a
recent press release.)
Are you a young person 12-17 years old needing boating course certification? Or,
are you an adult wanting to improve your boating knowledge? Boater education
courses are online year-round to help! Check out the Iowa DNR’s website at www.iowadnr.gov and search under “Boater
Education” to learn about the courses available for little or no charge. The
courses offered satisfy the state’s boating course requirement for young boaters
who will operate a motorboat over ten horsepower or personal watercraft (PWC).
As the weather starts to warm up, we’re all anxious to get outside and enjoy the
sunshine. Families and friends gather together to enjoy the outdoors, travel on
vacation and spend time on the water – boating, fishing, sailing, and more. It’s
important to remember the safety precautions to take during all of these
recreational water activities.
But, with approximately 500 people
drowning each year from recreational boating accidents, it is imperative to push
the message of “Wear It!”: wear your life jacket at all times while you are on
Throughout the boating season, the National Safe Boating Council is working with
their partner organizations to encourage safe and responsible boating, including
the practice of always wearing a life jacket, and being alert and aware while on
“Accidents on the water can happen much too fast to reach and
put on a stowed life jacket,” said Virgil Chambers, executive director of the
National Safe Boating Council. “It’s important that everyone wears a life jacket
while on the water. There’s no reason why you, your family and friends, can’t
have fun on the water while also choosing to always wear a life
Here are a few boating safety tips to keep in mind this boating
1. No matter what activity you have planned – boating, fishing
sailing, etc. – always remember to wear a life jacket every time you are on the
2. Make sure your life jacket is U.S. Coast Guard-approved and
properly fits. Double check that your life jacket is appropriate for your
favorite boating activities.
3. Life jackets meant for adults do not work
for children. If you are boating with children, make sure they are wearing
properly fitted, child-sized life jackets. Do not buy a life jacket for your
child to “grow into.”
U.S. Coast Guard statistics show that drowning was
the reported cause of death in three-fourths of recreational boating fatalities
in 2010, and that 88 percent of those who drowned were not wearing life jackets.
That’s why boating safety advocates continue to push for increased and
consistent life jacket wear on the water.
“A life jacket can’t save your
life unless you “Wear It!,” continued Chambers. “With today’s variety of
comfortable, stylish life jackets, there’s a life jacket for everyone – even our
four-legged friends! No matter the water activity or life jacket style chosen -
and always remember to ‘Wear It!’”
The Army Corp of Engineers would like your input concerning ideas and future plans for the Red Rock Lake area. Please view the Focus Areas below and visit www.lakeredrock.org for more information and to send your input. Due to image sizes the pages may load slowly so please be patient.
HEALTHY ENVIRONMENT Healthy Environment Overview What is an ESA MP ESA Red Rock 11×17 Map 1 of 2 11-2012
MP ESA Red Rock 11×17 Map 2 of 2 11-20-12
Healthy Environment Eliminate Invasive Species map
Healthy Environment Main Invaders
Healthy Environment Goal 4
Healthy Environment Public Hunting Acres
Healthy Environment Water Quality and Fisheries
A NATURAL PLACE TO PLAY
A Natural Place to Play Overview
A Natural Place to Play Natural Feel
A Natural Place to Play Volksweg Trail
A Natural Place to Play Water Trail
A Natural Place to Play Marina
A Natural Place to Play Archery
A Natural Place to Play Horse Trails
A Natural Place to Play Soft Trails
A Natural Place to Play Cordova
Connections Habitat Fragmentation
Connections Trail Connections USACE
Connections Surrounding Communities trails
Connections Wayfinding Intersections
Connections Natural Playscapes
Connections Watchable Wildlife
For more information, contact the Corps at (641) 828-7522 or (641) 628-8690.
Lake Association Members: As a special perk of your support, we’re providing you this sneak peek at the next “Ask the Corps” article (to be published in the Pella Chronicle and Knoxville Journal-Express)
If you’ve surfed the web recently and visited Lake Red Rock’s webpage www.lakeredrock.org, you might have noticed our new appearance. The new look is part of the Corps of Engineers directive for all of its facilities to display a more uniform look. Coralville Lake, Saylorville Lake, and Corps areas on the upper Mississippi River all transitioned to the new web format in late October, and more Corps projects nationwide will gradually be converted over time. Continue reading
Greetings! As a special perk of your support, we’re providing you this sneak peek at the next “Ask the Corps” article (to be published in the Pella Chronicle and Knoxville Journal-Express).
The Corps just received a new three dimensional model of the dam showing how it will look once the proposed hydropower plant is completed. Missouri River Energy Services (MRES), the company developing the facility, provided the model to help lake users visualize the project. It will also be used as a teaching aid for agency staff to explain the construction and operation of the new facility. Continue reading