Parks & Conservation Areas
Shawnee Bend Park sits on the shores of Harry S. Truman Lake in the hills of western Missouri. Visitors enjoy fishing, hunting, swimming, and boating. Click here for the Harry S. Truman Lake virtual tour.
The Shawnee Bend Park is a year-round day-use area that offers a large group picnic shelter, making it perfect for large family gatherings. Amenities include flush and pit toilets and drinking water.
Truman Lake lies among rolling hills and rocky bluffs. Dense hardwood forests studded with mature pine trees cover the area. Thus, wildlife is abundant in and around the park. Whitetail deer, turkey, hummingbirds, hawks and ospreys are commonly seen and bald eagles can be viewed during the winter months.
Shawnee Bend is an excellent fishing location. Consequently, anglers find crappie, largemouth bass, and blue and flathead catfish. Thus, Truman Lake is also a popular destination for tournament fishermen. A playground and sandy beach make the area perfect for families.
For campground inquiries, please call 660-438-7317. For more information, visit their website.
Drake Harbor is named after long-time resident and Mayor of Warsaw, Gordon Howard Drake. It is part of the Corps of Engineers’ leased-property acquired by the City of Warsaw after the Truman Dam was built.
where is drake harbor in Warsaw, MO
It is located on the Osage Arm of Lake of the Ozarks, just one block off of downtown Main Street, at the intersection of Harrison and Benton Street. This beautiful area has a host of riverfront trails that are perfect for everyone whether you are out for a relaxing stroll, bicycle ride or if you are a serious walker or runner. The harbor loop is approximately three-quarters of a mile.
You will also find the beautiful Steamboat Landing Boardwalk which connects to MK White Park by way of the Osage Trail that stretches one and a half miles to 65 hwy. Subsequently, the Drake Harbor Trial and footbridge lead to the historic Joe Dice Swinging Bridge, which connects to the Bledsoe Ferry Trail and to the Kickapoo Island Trail.
things to do at drake harbor
Drake Harbor is also home to a playground, horseshoe pits, beautiful picnic areas along the water, access to fishing areas, boat ramps, boat slips, and the gorgeous Osage Amphitheater overlooking the water that plays host to many weddings & musical events.
Additionally, Drake Harbor also plays host to many Jubilee Day events in the summer and Heritage Days events in the fall as well as at Christmas you will find Warsaw’s own wonderland of lights with an amazing array of spectacular light displays!!
The Osage Amphitheater is available for public rentals. Boat slips (8) are available on a first-come-first-serve basis.
Clear waters, dramatic bluffs, and vibrant summer and fall colors make Harry S Truman State Park an ideal place to vacation. Located on a peninsula, the park offers a marina, ample fishing and boating opportunities, and water that’s perfect for every kind of swimmer. Additionally, hiking trails, picnic areas, and campsites dot the park’s open oak woodlands and provide a home for abundant wildlife.
Thibaut Point Park
Thibaut Point Park sits on the shores of Harry S. Truman Lake in the hills of western Missouri. Not surprisingly, visitors enjoy fishing, hunting, swimming and boating. Click here for the Harry S. Truman Lake virtual tour.
This year-round park offers family and group campsites with and without electric hookups. Two day-use group picnic shelters with hookups are also available, making the area perfect for large parties or family functions.
A year-round campground offers 25 sites with 30-amp electric hookups, 14 sites with 50 amp electric and water hookups, along five primitive sites without hookups.
Amenities include flush and pit toilets, showers, drinking water, laundry facilities, a dump station, and a boat ramp. Likewise, a nice, sandy beach offers additional recreation opportunities.
Truman Lake lies among rolling hills and rocky bluffs. Dense hardwood forests studded with mature pine trees cover the area, providing good shade in the campground. Wildlife is abundant in and around the park. Commonly seen here are Whitetail deer, turkey, hummingbirds, hawks and ospreys. Bald eagles are viewed more easily during the winter months.
Thibaut Point offers great opportunities to get out on the water. Consequently, boating and swimming are popular activities here. The park is an excellent fishing location. Anglers find crappie, largemouth bass, and blue and flathead catfish. Finally, Truman Lake is also a popular destination for tournament fishermen.
For campground inquiries, please call 660-428-2470. Visit their website for more information.
Bledsoe Ferry Park sits on the shores of Harry S. Truman Lake in the hills of western Missouri. Therefore, visitors enjoy fishing, hunting, swimming, and boating. Click here for the Harry S. Truman Lake virtual tour.
Additionally, there is a year-round day-use area contains four group picnic shelters. Amenities include flush and pit toilets, drinking water, an accessible boat ramp, and fishing dock.
Truman Lake lies among rolling hills and rocky bluffs. Dense hardwood forests studded with mature pine trees cover the area.
Bledsoe Ferry is an excellent fishing location. Anglers find crappie, largemouth bass, and blue and flathead catfish. Truman Lake is also a popular destination for tournament fishermen. The park also offers an excellent location to view “The Dam Experience,” a huge annual fireworks display shot from the Truman Dam.
West Bledsoe Ferry Sports Complex
Bledsoe Ferry Sports Complex is located along the banks of the Osage Arm of Lake of the Ozarks, at 16609 Bledsoe Ferry Road (just off of West Dam Access Road).
This sports complex in Benton County, MO, has a venue of three soccer fields and one regulation baseball field, one regulation softball field, one multi-purpose field, and two youth t-ball Fields. There is also a batting cage, a full-service concession stand, and restrooms. Bledsoe plays host to all High School baseball and softball events as well as all parks and recreation soccer, softball, and baseball events as well as tournaments for adults and youth alike.
Lay Park is located at 1009 W. Jackson and extends to Kennedy Drive. It is the largest of the parks in Warsaw as well as home to the Warsaw Municipal Pool, and Lumpe Ballfield. Also within Lay Park are four shelter houses for public use on a first come first serve use, or available for rental/reservations for that special event.
Across the road from Shelter #2 are a mountain bike skills park, two walking/biking trails, two tennis courts, and a playground. Lumpe Ballfield hosts all adult league softball, youth baseball, t-ball & coach pitch games. Known for its beautiful grandstand, this field also has a concession stand and restrooms.
Shelter houses are available for reservation for your private event. Call 438-5522 to reserve, or they can be used on a first come first serve basis. You may also download the Shelter Rental Agreement form below. Fill in and return to the Community Building.
Ezekial Williams Park
Ezekial Williams Park is located in Cole Camp, Missouri. The park’s namesake, Ezekiel Williams, is known as the “grandfather of the Santa Fe Trail and gave Cole Camp its name when he established a post office in 1830.
For more information about Ezekiel William’s Park, please contact the City of Cole Camp website.
Located in Lincoln, Missouri, Hare Park is a gathering place for the community. Featuring reservable shelter houses, 4H and FFA buildings, and ball fields, many community events are hosted at Hare Park.
If you are interested in reserving a facility at Hare Park, Contact Carl Williams at (660) 221-5600.
Big Buffalo Creek Conservation Area is in east-central Benton and west-central Morgan counties. This 3,612-acre, mostly forested area contains a 6-acre fishing pond, three springs and 3.0 miles of Big Buffalo Creek.
Interestingly, this conservation area was acquired in 1964 with Sport Fish Restoration Funds for the purposes of fisheries research in the hatchery ponds and for smallmouth bass habitat research on Big Buffalo Creek. Stream-flow dynamics research is still on-going, but all original fisheries research projects have finished.
purpose of big buffalo creek conservation area
Currently, the area is managed for the long-term health and sustainability of the diverse forest resources. Forest management activities that observed in the area include timber stand improvement, tree planting, commercial thinning, even-aged and uneven-aged commercial harvests, woodland restoration, and glade/savanna restoration.
All of these practices are implemented using best management practices to protect the soil and water resources of the watershed. Management also includes the preservation of several old-growth areas. These practices are carried out to provide a variety of wildlife habitats to allow the area to support diverse and vibrant wildlife populations.
Big buffalo creek fen natural area
Big Buffalo Creek Conservation Area has one designated natural area, Big Buffalo Creek Fen Natural Area. The fen is a 40-acre portion of the conservation area with natural features that include a small, spring-fed fen, a spring branch and creek, dolomite glades, and forest. Found here are sedges that dominate the fen vegetation, and blue flag, marsh coneflower, Riddell’s goldenrod, willow, and the rare bushy aster.
For campground inquiries and additional information, please call 660-438-7317 or visit their website.
Brickley Hollow contains small expanses of woodland, savanna, native grassland, and a dolomite glade, which are all common to areas surrounding Lake of the Ozarks.
Additionally, you will find a variety of wildflowers including rose gentian, blazing stars, and prairie dock can be found on the area, as well as other species associated with glade communities, including fence lizards and five-lined skink.
The diverse variety of habitats on this area helps to provide small game, deer and turkey hunting opportunities.
For more information, visit the website.
110 acres of conservation land that contains forest, old fields, and Cole Camp Creek (a small arm of the Lake of the Ozarks) in Benton County.
Granny’s Acres Conservation Area is a 351-acre area that offers good squirrel, turkey and deer hunting in season. The hardwood forest is graced with dogwood, gum bumelia, and serviceberry blossoms, as well as returning songbirds.
History of granny’s acres conservation area
As a formerly inaccessible area, Granny’s Acres has a history of frequent wildfires before the Department acquired it in the 1960s. Those fires destroyed the area’s timber potential but created a diverse plant community, including trees with cavities that provide habitat for birds and small wildlife.
Today, managers are using prescribed fire and other techniques to restore the area’s dolomite glades (a rocky, desertlike type of habitat), maintain the limestone oak/hickory woodland plant community and restore the riparian forest along Whig Creek. These management practices maintain the area’s diverse wildlife habitat and support good populations of turkey, deer, and squirrel.
In 2008, the Department acquired an additional 31-acre tract, and it added a small, three-car parking lot in 2009. Thanks to these improvements, visitors can now park in the area and hike in for hunting and nature viewing.
Hunting at granny’s acres conservation area
Spring turkey hunting is always challenging and can be very rewarding at Grannys Acres–if you’re willing to hike. A network of mapped and signed trails allows the visitor to range widely over the area. However, the trails are not for the faint of heart. Granny’s Acres is a very rocky area with steep hills with some long climbs along glades and through old-growth woodlands.
Birders will appreciate seeing and hearing such species as summer tanager, blue-gray gnatcatcher, field sparrow, eastern towhee, red-eyed vireo, white-eyed vireo, eastern bluebird, yellow-bellied cuckoo, yellow-breasted chat, red-shouldered hawk and broad-winged hawk. Additionally, other fun-to-watch wildlife includes scorpions, box turtles, five-lined skinks, and fence lizards.
Come back later in the spring and summer to see a lead plant, goat’s rue, blazing star, purple coneflower, Missouri coneflower, rose verbena, asters and purple milkweed.
For more information, visit the website
A 655-acre native prairie, purchased from Vaughn Lumpee in 1987. Mr. Lumpee ran a cattle operation on this area and he had a great fondness for the cowboy lifestyle. The unusual name for this area is traced to the traditional greeting that one cowboy would give to another when meeting out on the vast prairies, “Hi Lonesome”. These words hung above Mr. Lumpee’s cabin home.
Importance of Hi lonesome prairie conservation area
This area has been designated by Missouri Audubon as an Important Bird Area (IBA). IBAs are sites that have been identified by Audubon as the most crucial for bird populations, due to their abundance and/or diversity of birds present.
High-quality grasslands are an important habitat for many species. This area is a remnant of a once-vast prairie ecosystem that provides habitat for a diverse group of plants and animals. Because less than one-half of one percent of our original prairie remains, some of these species have become increasingly rare.
maintaining hi lonesome prairie conservation area
Area managers use prescribed fire, grazing, and other management practices to maintain healthy grasslands, simulate historic disturbances, and limit the negative impacts of invasive plants.
Seen here occasionally, although extremely uncommon, are prairie chickens. Other species of conservation concern that find a home in this area include Mead’s milkweed and upland sandpipers.