Nebraska Game and Parks is putting a plan together to revitalize the Fort Atkinson State Historical Park.
Established in 1819 and recreated in the 1980s, Fort Atkinson was the first U.S. Army post west of the Missouri River.
Game and Parks Commission officials say they have an idea of what needs to be done to draw in tourists, but Bob Hanover, assistant parks division administrator, says they want to hear from the public.
“Fort Atkinson is an important park in our system. It’s an important historical site,” Hanover tells Nebraska Radio Network. “We really want to share with the public what we want to do there, our commitment to that park, and to let them know that Game and Parks Commission is very serious about honoring the history there.”
Hanover says working groups will look at educational programming, special events, maintenance, and fundraising. The Commission has been working with the City of Fort Calhoun, the Friends of Fort Atkinson group, and the Washington County Historical Society on the plan.
“We think we have some of the answer, but not all of it,” Hanover says. “We know we need to do more. We know we need to do a better job, and this plan is to help us do that.”
A public informational meeting is scheduled for May 11 at 7 p.m. in the library of Fort Calhoun High School, 5876 County Road P43. The meeting will consist of a presentation of the plan’s goals and objectives, followed by input from the public regarding the plan.
For more information, to comment, or to request a copy of the plan, contact Craig Wacker at firstname.lastname@example.org or 402-471-5424.