On March 1, 1972, Richard Nixon signed a bill making the Buffalo River the first National River in the United States. Now almost 50 years later, the Ozark Society is planning 5 major events in support of the 50th anniversary. Details will be posted on the Ozark Society website later.

BNR50 Hike Series: A series of hikes on the 134 miles of trails within the Buffalo National River (BNR) will be offered to the public beginning in fall of 2021 and extending throughout 2022. The Highlands Chapter of the Ozark Society (OSHC) will organize the hikes as part of its annually scheduled hiking season with a special focus on hiking within the BNP during this anniversary period. If you are willing to lead a hike, contact coordinator Brian Thompson at thompsonadd@gmail.com.

Buffalo River Float, Grinder’s Ferry (Hwy 65, River Mile 95.2) to White River (River Mile 153.0), June 13-18, 2022: This 58-mile event is intended to involve more people than the usual semi-annual OS float for members only, with invitations to news media as well as friends, neighbors and celebrities that might not ordinarily float the river. We will travel in small groups (<15) with experienced leaders, and possible access to shorter sections for day trippers. Stewart Noland is coordinating trip leaders and logistics.

The Buffalo River Documentary: This film is based on OS archival material and interviews with regional environmental leaders, is scheduled for its premiere showing in March, 2022 in Bentonville, hometown of Neil Compton. See the Ozark Society Foundation link on the OS webpage for details as showings are announced.

Ozark Society coalition partners from the Buffalo River Watershed Alliance, Arkansas Canoe Club, and the National Parks Conservation Association is sponsoring a two-day Buffalo River Celebration, May 9-10, 2022 for members of the Joint Agriculture Committee of the Arkansas Legislature – an influential player in the protection of the river. There will only be a short float down the Buffalo from Tyler Bend to Gilbert, but with considerable other goings on. If you would be willing to host a member of the legislature down the river in your canoe on the 10th, you can contact me at ospres@ozarksociety.net.

OS Sponsored Float, April 5, 2022: Float from Tyler Bend to Gilbert for U. S. senators & congressmen, representatives and senators in the AR legislature, county judges, mayors, and others. This event is in its planning infancy, with coordinators Paul Means, Stewart Noland, and David Peterson.