MDC celebrates National Hunting and Fishing Day with special river event at Columbia Bottom Sept. 23

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Saint Louis
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St. LOUIS, Mo.—If you’ve ever wanted to explore North America’s largest rivers up close and personal, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) is giving you the chance. 

National Hunting and Fishing Day is Sept. 23.  Missouri is a great place to hunt and fish, so there’s plenty to celebrate.  MDC is holding a special event to commemorate the occasion—A Day at the Confluence, on Saturday, Sept. 23 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at Columbia Bottom Conservation Area in Spanish Lake.

This free family event will take place at the Confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers.  These two rivers, the largest in North America, offer world-class fishing and hunting opportunities.  Visitors can join MDC and its conservation partners for a day of fun and educational activities to celebrate the outdoors that will include guided river boat rides to experience these majestic bodies of water first hand. 

Many other outdoor happenings will offer something for participants of all ages, including:

  • Archery shooting
  • Atlatl throwing
  • Shoot/Don’t Shoot walk through course
  • BB gun shooting
  • Fish ID and animal skull mazes
  • Fishing instruction courtesy of Boy Scouts of America
  • Special activities for young children

Most National Hunting and Fishing Day attractions will be centered at the visitor center near the area’s entrance. Shuttle buses will be on hand to take visitors to the Missouri River boat ramp for the boat tours and activities there, or they’ll have the option to drive themselves.  Guests will also be free to explore the sprawling 4,318-acre conservation area on their own, with its mosaic of habitats that include prairie, bottomland woods, wetlands and cropland and the area’s visitor center. 

Food trucks will offer food for purchase during the event, including Doughboys Pizza, Crooked Boot Cajun/Creole, Gioia’s Deli, and St. Louis French Quarter food trucks.

Partners joining MDC at A Day at the Confluence include National Wild Turkey Federation, Boy Scouts of America, Mississippi Valley Duck Hunters Association, Frederick Douglass Wildlife & Conservation Club, and Ducks Unlimited.

The event is free and open to the general public; no reservations are required.  To reach Columbia Bottom Conservation Area, take the I-270 Riverview Drive exit and go three miles north.  For more information, call 314-877-6014.

The roots of National Hunting and Fishing Day go back to the turn of the 20th century, when hunters and anglers became the most vocal supporters of conservation and scientific wildlife management. They were the first to call public attention to the fact that rapid development and unregulated hunting were threatening wildlife and natural habitats.

In 1972, Congress unanimously authorized a day to commemorate conservation successes past and future, and to honor those sportsmen who began the modern conservation movement.  National Hunting and Fishing Day was created and designated as the fourth Saturday of every September.

National Hunting and Fishing Day remains an ideal opportunity to celebrate our country’s outdoor heritage and introduce children to the wonders of nature.