Business honored for supporting O.K. Kids Days, wetland development, park cabins

On Feb. 18, the Kansas Wildscape Foundation recognized Bass Pro Shops commitment to the Outdoor Kansas for Kids (O.K. Kids) program, as well as their role in helping Kansas Wildscape being named the 2006 National Foundation of the Year by the National Association of State Park Directors (NASPD). The recognition was made at Bass Pro's new Olathe store during a Friends and Family Night.

Through the years, the support of Bass Pro Shops and many other sponsors has enabled Kansas Wildscape to help restore 2,800 acres of wetland near Milford Reservoir, establish O.K. Kids, and build modern cabins in Kansas state parks. These projects are why Kansas Wildscape was selected from foundations across the country and chosen by the NASPD to be honored as the 2006 Foundation of the Year.

"One of the programs Wildscape is most proud of is Outdoor Kansas for Kids (O.K. Kids)," said Mike Vineyard, a member of the Wildscape board of directors. "Bass Pro Shops became the founding sponsor of Kansas Wildscape’s O.K. Kids program eight years ago. Since then, the program has reached more than 65,000 Kansas kids and their families."

O.K. Kids day is an event in which outdoor activities such as fishing derbies, zoo presentations, mini triathlons, and birding festivals are available to the kids free of charge. These events are hosted across the state by state parks and city park and recreation departments that organize and lead the activities. The program was implemented to encourage kids to get up and be active while enjoying the outdoors. Events are held in spring and summer from April through September.