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Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park Designated as a State Geological Site - April 11, 2024

by Jeffrey Forbes, FOPP president

It’s been an exciting spring at Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park. On Thursday, April 11th, nearly forty people gathered at the visitor’s center amidst strong thunderstorms and an approaching late season cold front to celebrate the park’s designation as a Geological Site of distinction by the State of Florida. Designated State Geological Sites are areas the Florida Geological Survey has determined to be significant to scientific study and the public's understanding of Florida's geological history.

Paynes Prairie sits on top of the Ocala Limestone, a significant geological formation that plays a crucial role in Florida’s hydrogeology. Some of significant geological features that led to the designation include sinkholes, springs, disappearing streams and large, shallow basins created by sinkhole activity called poljes.

Florida State Park Director, Chuck Hatcher, attended the event and addressed the gathering saying, “Today’s designation reaffirms what we already knew – that these diverse and unique landscapes should be treasured, preserved and appreciated. I’m thankful to the Florida Geological Survey for its work on this designation, which serves as a great educational component alongside the park’s extraordinary recreational opportunities.”

Florida’s State Geologist and Director of the Florida Geological Survey, Guy “Harley” Means presented the designation to Park Manager, Kevin Patton and added “State Geological Sites are special places where visitors can learn about Florida’s fascinating geology and hydrology. They also provide opportunities to learn about our geologic past so that we can make informed decisions about our future.”




Contact Us

Visitors Center - 352-466-4100
Ranger Station - 352-466-3397

Friends of Paynes Prairie
100 Savannah Boulevard
Micanopy, FL 32667

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