The Outdoor Alliance of Story County (OASC) was established as a 501(c)3 nonprofit in 2013 at the request of Mike Cox, Director, of Story County Conservation, with the support of the Story County Conservation Board, and the county supervisors. All were in agreement that additional resources supporting outdoor recreation, education, and conservation in Story County were needed beyond what the supervisors were able to provide.
Since then, the Outdoor Alliance has partnered with many other non-profit groups, businesses, governmental agencies, and informal groups for specific projects that also enhance outdoor recreation, education, and conservation.
In 2022, the Outdoor Alliance formalized partnering with Prairie Rivers of Iowa (PRI) on an ongoing basis.
PRI: Why is it important for the Outdoor Alliance of Story County to have a formalized partnership with Prairie Rivers of Iowa?
OASC: Both Prairie Rivers of Iowa and the Outdoor Alliance work with Story County Conservation’s water monitoring project. This is a multi-year effort to ascertain the challenges affecting the surface water and watersheds we depend on in Story County for our water supply. The water monitoring will then guide any needed remediation efforts for water that are safe for drinking and recreation. The Outdoor Alliance has also partnered with Prairie Rivers of Iowa, Story County Conservation, the City of Ames, and the Skunk River Paddlers in waterway cleanups on Ioway Creek.
PRI: What is the first or most important thing that comes to mind that OASC has done to inspire Story County citizens to get out and benefit from your organization’s investments in Story County recreation and conservation?
OASC: The Outdoor Alliance has assisted in raising funds for several new public land acquisitions in Story County. Besides providing more public land for recreation, these acquisitions have added-on to existing parks, help protect the water we depend on, and can mitigate flood damage. Land acquisitions are forever community assets. Land acquisitions are, however, expensive; groups like the Outdoor Alliance help make these acquisitions possible. If a community is going to thrive, it needs to be a place people want to live, work and enjoy the outdoors. It takes public investments, including from non-profit groups like the Outdoor Alliance.