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River Jam returns to the water and expands for its 19th year

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River Jam is getting its original name back as it returns for its 19th year to the water in 2016 with a familiar name on June 11 at the Finley River Park in Ozark for 2016.

Jim Turner Access at the Finley River Park in Ozark will be the point of the action.

Jim Turner Access at the Finley River Park in Ozark will be the point of the action.

Formerly called the “Dam Jam,” it was held in downtown Springfield for several years, the annual event is in its 19th year.River Jam, which was for several years known as “Dam Jam,” is an annual event and fundraiser brought to the community by the James River Basin Partnership, a local water quality not-for-profit organization (501.c.3).

The event celebrates local water and water quality education through hands-on interactive activities, live music, a crawdad boil, beer & food vendors, in partnership with water loving business vendors and organizational booths.

To help celebrate our rivers, River Jam is expanding its range of activities available for the Ozarks to enjoy. To accommodate this addition, River Jam hours will be expanded and will take place from 2-10 p.m.

Treat yourself and a friend to a boat ride up the Finley River with Bass Pro Shops, or check out Bass Pro’s many community offerings, including the Ascend Kayak Pool. Sign up for some casting instruction and conservation tips. Musical performances will entertain throughout the day and evening, while Springfield Brewing Company, Wil Fisher, and Ozark’s Coca-Cola/Dr. Pepper offer refreshments. And, don’t worry, we have your food covered for the day too with lots of options! We will have delicious food vendors and our first ever “Crawdad Market.” Enjoy boiled crawdads from local restaurants with unique recipes.

The James River Basin Partnership is eager to tie the excitement of the day, and River Jam, back to the organization’s daily mission of water quality within the James River watershed.

Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for children 7-15. Children six and under are free.  For information and updates regarding sponsors, activities, and music visit JamesRiverBasin.com.

George Freeman is a veteran journalist and photographer. An award-winning writer, editor and columnist in Springfield, Mo., with more than 50 years experience. His preference is for positive and uplifting stories about people, places, traditions and trends that make the Ozarks one of the most livable regions anywhere. A member of the Garden Writers Association of America, he is a past-president of the Society of Professional Journalists of Southwest Missouri, the Kansas and Ohio AP societies; a board member of Friends of the Garden and a member of the Rotary Club of Springfield. In 1976, he traveled to India as a member of a Rotary Foundation Group Study Exchange Team.

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