A state park in southwest Iowa has more than doubled in size after a land transfer from the Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation. Foundation spokeswoman Kathy Engstrom says 646-acres of land that was a Girl Scout camp now will be part of Waubonsie State Park near Sidney.
She says it’s a beautiful site with prairie topped ridges, a lake and many natural features. She says it also has many buildings that will be useful for tourism. Engstrom says the expanded park is expected to be popular. She says because of its location in the corner of the state, it could draw people from Iowa, Nebraska and Missouri. She says there’s a potential economic impact of one-point-eight million dollars.
Engstrom says the foundation worked with the state to attain the money to buy the land. She says this was unusual as the state legislature actually approved a line-item appropriation for the purchase and also approved an additional one-million dollars from the Values fund. The total purchase price of the land was two-point-one million dollars.
The Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation also recently transferred nearly 600 acres of land to the Boone River Wildlife area. She says it’s in Hamilton County 10 miles from Webster City. The Boone River winds through the area that is designated as an Iowa protected water area. The foundation bought the property in 2004 and has now transferred the land to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.