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10/9/2017 12:21:00 PM
Preserving state parks a priority for Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch
Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch spoke with Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial Chief of Interpretation Mike Capps, left, and Lincoln State Park naturalist Michael Crews on Friday near the land where the 16th President's home was built. Staff photo by Allen Laman
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Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch spoke with Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial Chief of Interpretation Mike Capps, left, and Lincoln State Park naturalist Michael Crews on Friday near the land where the 16th President's home was built. Staff photo by Allen Laman

Allen Laman, Herald

LINCOLN CITY — Lincoln State Park and the Lincoln Boyhood National Memorial hosted a special visitor Friday when Indiana Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch surveyed the grounds accompanied by park and grounds staff.

As part of her job, Crouch oversees a number of state departments and groups, one of them being the Indiana Office of Tourism Development. She said she will eventually stop at every Indiana state park because seeing them all firsthand is important to her.

“First of all, this is Indiana,” Crouch said. “Our state parks are preserving Indiana and preserving our history. Each park has its own unique character, personality and its own history associated with it. Our state parks are Indiana and we want to be sure they are preserved and visited and that people recognize and appreciate them. What better way to appreciate them than to come myself?”

She added: “(State parks) are such an important part of tourism and that generates revenue not just for the State of Indiana but for our local communities. It puts dollars here back into the area.”

The Lincoln City park and memorial include the history of Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States.

According to the National Park Service’s website, Lincoln grew up on the southern Indiana soil where the replica boyhood home now sits. Lincoln’s character and moral traits were formed and nurtured there, according to the website. Crouch joked that even though Illinois claims him, Lincoln was raised a Hoosier.

Throughout the tour of the properties — which included both driving and walking — park staff chronicled Lincoln’s life inside and outside of Indiana and highlighted parts of the 1,747-acre park.

At a stop at the Lincoln Amphitheatre, Marc Steczyk, who has been director of the amphitheater since 2015, told the lieutenant governor that he would love for the facility to be the official amphitheater of Indiana, something the two will discuss in the future.

Crouch was born and raised in Evansville and previously served as Indiana’s state auditor, a state representative for House District 78, and auditor of Vanderburgh County.

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