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Parties, Habitat Destruction Force DNR to Close Wildlife Area

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JOHNSON COUNTY, Iowa — The Iowa Department of Natural Resources has closed an eastern Iowa campground after they say it was overrun by partiers.

It’s the Hawkeye Wildlife Management Area in Johnson County, just north of Iowa City.

The DNR says it has had enough after ten years of destruction to the wildlife habitat. They say trash can be found everywhere, as well as tire tracks from off-roading, and fires left unattended. The area has also been a popular place for underage drinking and illegal drug use.

Shawn Meier, southeast Iowa district law enforcement supervisor for the Iowa DNR, says “We don’t want to see it shut down for good, but what’s happening here is not camping, it’s a party.”

A public meeting will be set soon to discuss what’s next for the area.