In May 2009, the Jasper County Conservation Board began laying the groundwork for what is expected to become the crowning jewel of the county conservation system. The facility, a longtime dream of numerous Conservation Board members dating back 25 years, would serve as a hub for the county conservation department and create a destination point for visitors, students, local groups and civic organizations.
Jasper County Conservation Board members and staff conducted thorough research before coming forward with a plan. Board members hired consultant Jim Pease to help determine the needs and goals for this project and then investigated several sites around the county for the location of Nature Center. Finally, it was determined that the nature center’s location should be at the old county care facility park, located east of the Iowa Speedway on the north side of Liberty Avenue. The property, just off of Interstate 80 and centrally located within the county, holds many natural amenities that have been deemed necessities for this project, including native timber, a pond, unplowed pasture/possible native prairie area, and a spot for an additional pond. In addition, the land is consistent with Jasper County Conservation Board values: take neglected land, and restore its natural conservation value. The 40 acres parcel of land is being generously donated to the Conservation Board by the Jasper County Board of Supervisors.