Finley Farms raises Riverside Bridge at park in Ozark, Mo.

Published: Mar. 30, 2021 at 12:30 PM CDT|Updated: Mar. 30, 2021 at 4:54 PM CDT
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OZARK, Mo. (KY3) - After years of work to preserve the historic Riverside Bridge, Finley Farms in Ozark raised it to its new location.

Finley Farms worked for years to preserve the historic Ozark Mill, but right next to it, sits the historic Riverside Bridge, which is more than 100 years old.

It all started with a grassroots effort by Ozark community members, including Kris Dyer and assistance from the city of Ozark, and even Senator Roy Blunt and Congressman Billy Long. With the vision of Bass Pro’s Johnny Morris and his daughter Megan Stack, the Riverside Bridge will soon be a foot bridge and a venue for private events. It will connect to the Ozark Mill and the wedding chapel at Finley Farms.

It will also eventually be a part of a trail system. The spot where the bridge is positioned is the former location of the Chadwick Flyer Railroad spur. Ozark Greenways is working to connect trails in Springfield and Ozark with the future Chadwick Flyer Trail. You will travel more than nine miles between the two communities and cross the historic Riverside Bridge. Kris Dyer started the grassroots effort to save the Riverside bridge more than 10 years ago, and she was here to see the truss put into place.

“It’s a dream come true,” said Dyer. “It really is, because this was something that we would only dream about. We did everything we could to try to save this bridge for all those years, went to county meetings MoDOT meetings, worked with historic preservation teams.”

Crews are assembling the bridge. And the timeline on when it will be complete is unknown.

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