MRCN is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that supports two movements:
1. Clean water. MRCN develops educational programs, fundraisers, cleanups, river festivals, and other community-centered programs to ensure that our watersheds are safe for human and non-human use.
2. Local/regional economic development. MRCN supports local food producers, the Katy Trail Merchants, regional non-profit organizations, and other associations that directly improve the economy while indirectly improving our environment.
MRCN envisions a sustainable tourism corridor that supports this mid-Missouri legacy through outdoor recreation, local business, local food, and history.
Ways to Share the Vision
Promoting Local Food with AmeriCorps
MRCN recruits skilled AmeriCorps members to direct volunteers, write grants, develop environmental education lessons, and build public support for local food.
We then match each AmeriCorps member with a nonprofit in mid-Missouri, such as:
- Columbia Center for Urban Agriculture
- Southern Boone Learning Gardens
- Kirksville Green Thumb
- Slow Food Katy Trail
- Healthy Dent County
- Kansas City Community Gardens
- EarthDance Farms
Meet our current AmeriCorps partners or find out how to get your organization involved in the Local Food movement by contacting MRCN.
Promoting Regional Cuisines
To promote local economics and regional cuisines in mid-Missouri, MRCN helped organize four nonprofits:
Each organization supports local food, recreation, and sustainable heritage tourism in their areas. Known as regional cuisine associations, they span multiple counties across the state.
View the map to find which regional association is promoting local food and events your area.
Promoting Local Food with Festivals
A Taste of Local Missouri
To celebrate the cultural, environmental, and economic benefits of local food, MRCN worked with the Missouri River Bluffs Association to create six food festivals across mid-Missouri.
Approximately 800 people made it to the festivals to enjoy local food, dance to live music, and meet the people behind their meals.
The Food Festivals Continue!
The MO Deep Roots website provides free recipes, cooking videos, and stories from the vendors of the food festivals. You can also visit our Food Festival photo gallery and the 2013 schedule for more details on the original six events.
Promoting the Katy Trail
Kickin’ it on the Katy
To promote local businesses on the Katy State Park Trail, MRCN helped to develop a nonprofit known as the Katy Trail Merchants and Communities, or KTMC.
KTMC supports events that improve river/trail recreation and local businesses, including:
Promoting our Historic Heritage
Living our history
MRCN partnered with AmeriCorps, historic educators, and others to promote the Lewis and Clark bicentennial celebration in 2004.
MRCN also helped develop 49 information boards along the Katy Trail and Bicentennial Driving Byways. These signs continue to provide historic information for visitors today.
View the Bicentennial Byways map to discover the Lewis & Clark’s historic trail.
Check out Columbia’s Heritage Festival to learn more about the heritage of Missouri.