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Blanchard Caverns Celebrates 40th Anniversary

Blanchard Caverns Celebrates 40th Anniversary

FIFTY-SIX, Ark -- Blanchard Springs Caverns, located on the Ozark-St. Francis National Forest will celebrate its 40th Anniversary this year. An anniversary celebration is planned for June 15, 2013, in Fifty-Six, Arkansas.

A special part of the celebration will be recognition of employees who have worked at the Caverns during the 40-year span. Past employees or family members who can attend the Celebration on June 15th are asked to call the Visitor Information Center at Blanchard Springs, (870) 757- 2211. Special name badges will be provided to former employees who worked during the initial 1973 season.

Lyon College to reduce energy usage

Lyon College to reduce energy usage

Lyon College is taking steps to reduce energy usage on its 136-acre campus.

The college is in the process of completing a retrofit of all the campus’s lighting.

Sodexo Facilities Director Jade Anderson said many of the college’s lights use 28 or 32-watt fluorescent blubs, but those will be replaced with T8 25-watt fluorescent bulbs, which are more energy efficient.

Anderson said all fixtures using incandescent lamps will be replaced with compact fluorescent lamps (CFL). CFLs use approximately 75 percent less energy than a traditional incandescent bulb and last at least six times longer, according to Energy Star.

Chandelier lights will be switched to LED lights.

Anderson said the college is also adding motion sensors to its light switches so the lights will automatically shut off if a room is not in use. Ultrasonic ceiling sensors will be used to detect if there is any noise in a room and will shut off the lights if no noise is heard.

USDA highlights efforts to protect White River watershed

USDA highlights efforts to protect White River watershed

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — USDA Deputy Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment Ann Mills today joined Deputy Secretary of the Interior David J. Hayes, Senator Mark Pryor, Congressman Tim Griffin, and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Army (Civil Works) Terrence “Rock” Salt to announce the designation of the White River Watershed National Blueway. In support of the designation, USDA will invest $22 million in soil and water conservation projects in the watershed.

“The designation of the White River watershed as a National Blueway demonstrates the Obama Administration’s continued commitment to the protection of public and working lands that are crucial to the growth and revitalization of rural America,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “The resources made available through this designation will support and promote needed conservation efforts and bolster valuable economic growth and job creation in years to come.”

White River to be Designated Nation’s Second National Blueway

White River to be Designated Nation’s Second National Blueway

Officials to Unveil Series of New Initiatives to Support Existing Partnerships

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – On Wednesday, January 9, 2013, Deputy Secretary of the Interior David J. Hayes will join Senator Mark Pryor, Congressman Tim Griffin, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army Terrence “Rock” Salt, and Deputy Undersecretary of Agriculture Ann Mills, as well as other federal, state and local officials and conservation partners to announce that the White River, along with its watershed, has been designated the nation’s second National Blueway.

Buffalo National River seeks input on camping fee increase

Buffalo National River seeks input on camping fee increase

Buffalo National River is seeking public comment and opinion on its proposal to increase fees at eight developed campgrounds.  If approved, the new fee rates would become effective March 1, 2013.  This would be the first campground fee increase to be enacted at Buffalo National River since 2003.

 

Corp opens visitors' center at Table Rock Lake

Corp opens visitors' center at Table Rock Lake

BRANSON, Mo. -- The Army Corps of Engineers' Little Rock District held a ribbon cutting ceremony April 27 for the new Dewey Short Visitor Center at Table Rock Lake near Branson.

The $10.8 million center, which is situated near the dam and the Corps’ project office, is one of a handful of regional Class A facilities in the Corps nationwide.  The 15,000-square-foot facility will have three functional areas: the visitor area, which will include exhibits, a 75-seat theater and a gift shop; the educational area, which will include a multi-purpose room and wet lab; and an administrative office area.

The engaging exhibits emphasize Table Rock dam, lake and powerhouse.  They depict how this project fits into the entire White River Basin.  There are fascinating interactive displays about the Ozark Mountain region and its unique culture and ecosystems.

Releases increased today from Beaver Dam

Releases increased today from Beaver Dam

ROGERS, Ark. -- The Army Corps of Engineers increased releases today from Beaver Dam as part of the ongoing effort to evacuate water captured in the flood pools of the White River lakes during heavy March rains.  A total of about 8,000 cubic feet per second will be released through the two turbines at full power generation.    

A falling lake level will come as welcome news to many who live around or recreate at Beaver Lake because the lake is still more than five feet above the top of its conservation pool.  Barring additional heavy rain, the lake level is expected to drop about half a foot a day for about 10 days until the lake reaches elevation 1,120.4 feet.