Making Magnificent Missouri

The area that encompasses the Missouri River Valley Corridor is ecologically diverse, historically rich, and in the backyard of an urban area with 3 million residents. It is a resource that, if appreciated and conserved, will provide continued recreation, lifestyle, and economic benefits for generations to come. Building on the investment and land conservation efforts already achieved by the Katy Land Trust, Magnificent Missouri is focused on conserving and increasing appreciation of the Katy Trail and the last 100 miles of the Missouri River Valley — as a premier regional asset — through education, events and collaborative projects.

The Missouri River Valley

Lewis and Clark traveled through the Missouri River Valley helping to forge the Gateway to the West. A stone’s throw from metropolitan St. Louis, the area is notable for its productive farmland, hilltop vineyards, and historic small towns. Today the valley is home to the nation’s longest hiking and biking route, the Katy Trail. Just a short bike ride away from our major urban centers, the Missouri River Valley has enormous potential to boost the region’s economy, while maintaining its own natural character. Join Magnificent Missouri as we work to protect the valley’s beauty and create new opportunities for the next generation of Missourians.

Rivertowns: 100 Miles, 200 Years, Countless Stories

From the contributions of German immigrants in the Civil War to the fledgling wine industry to the long-lasting implications of the area’s industrial efforts during World War II, the Missouri River Valley is steeped in history. Join Magnificent Missouri as we continue that legacy, investing in new programs and partnerships that continue to add historical significance to this special region. Rivertowns: 100 Miles, 200 Years, Countless Stories is a Nine Network special that taps into the social, natural and cultural changes in Missouri River communities over more than two centuries. Inspired by the book Growing Up with the River, Nine Generations on the Missouri, the film visits historical sites, the people and the beauty of the Missouri River Valley. Watch the full film here.

Peers Store

Located at 16011 Concord Hill Rd, Marthasville, MO 63357, Peers Store underwent a full refurbishing made possible by Connie and Dan Burkhardt of the Katy Land Trust. Open on weekends from 12 pm to 4 pm, April through October, visitors can enjoy live local music on the porch and stunning local art on display. Weary travelers can find beverages and delicious snacks — something for everyone. Founded in 1896, Peers Store was named in the National Register of Historic Places in 2017 and continues to hold a special place in the history of the Missouri River valley. Check out our events page for happenings at Peers Store.

Treloar Mercantile Building

After sitting vacant for more than 70 years, an investment on behalf of the Katy Land Trust gave life back to another historic building, the Treloar Mercantile. The building was purchased and rehabilitated to hold special events promoting commerce and conservation along the Katy Trail. Preserving buildings like the Treloar Mercantile Building is essential to maintaining the historical character of towns throughout our magnificent state. Check out our events page for happenings at the Treloar Mercantile Building.

The Katy Trail turns 30!

In the early 1980s, Edward D. (Ted) Jones of Williamsburg, Missouri, experienced a bike ride on a “rails-to-trails” project in Wisconsin. Inspired, Ted thought that Missouri and Missourians would greatly benefit from a similar project. What is now the Katy Trail was, at that time, the abandoned KATY railroad, complete with rails and ties. Ted and his wife Pat worked with local, state, and national organizations to begin the creation of the Katy Trail. The first segment of the trail opened at Rocheport in the spring of 1990, making 2020 the 30th anniversary of the opening of the Katy Trail! The 225-mile Katy Trail State Park gives all of us the opportunity to enjoy the natural scenic beauty of the Missouri countryside — along the longest rails-to-trails project in the United States.