Work to clean up Cooper's Landing in preparation for re-opening following historic floods continued Sunday despite forecasts that the Missouri River, rising again after heavy rains across north Missouri and nearby regions, will once again inundate the popular Boone County riverside venue.
A large dumpster filled with debris is outside, sloppy mud covers every part of the property that hasn't been hosed off and Smith Hatchery Road remains closed just south of Cooper's. The river road from the Easley area is also closed. Cooper's Landing can be reached via Smith Hatchery Road from the north but that route will close again soon as the river rises.
The Missouri River is forecast to rise five feet by Tuesday before receding again.
Perry Hodgden was hosing mud out of the store and kitchen areas while Rodney Brown removed debris. Brown said he moved into an apartment on the property 10 months ago that is flooded when the river reaches 25.4 feet on the Boonville gauge, four feet above flood level.
This year's flooding, which has come in two rounds, the second higher than the first, has become one of the longest-duration floods in recorded history of the river.
"I have been flooded out eight times and not even been here a year," Brown said.
On the ground floor, where the water was about 3 and a half feet deep, the mud was four to six inches deep after the waters receded, Brown said.
"It will be less than a foot deep in here if it goes to where they said the gauge is going," Brown said.
Plans to re-open Cooper's Landing Sunday with a blues jam are looking more unlikely as the river rises, owner Richard King said. King completed his purchase of the venue in May, just before floodwaters rose high enough to close it.
With drywall stripped off walls and soaked wall studs, King is considering his options, he wrote in a text message.
"I prefer to think in the long term in regards to dealing with floods," King said.
When the flooding will end for weary residents along the Missouri River is uncertain. The National Weather Service forecast Sunday that it will be at least early July in Boonville and Glasgow and “until further notice” in Jefferson City.
The only bright spot is that after a soggy weekend, sunny skies are forecast to return to the region by Tuesday with only a slight chance of rain for the rest of the week.
The heavy rains are causing road closures across northern Missouri, with 360 state highways closed at water crossings or in flood plains throughout the state, the Missouri Department of Transportation was reporting on its website Sunday morning.
The river will crest Tuesday in Glasgow and Boonville and Wednesday in Jefferson City, the National Weather Service stated. The levels will be below the highest water seen this year but will be enough to fill again the areas opened by levee breaches throughout the flood plain.
Roads that have not re-opened after being closed for river flooding will remain closed until the new crest passes and many routes that closed when levees broke or were over-topped will may close again.
The river was above flood stage in Central Missouri from March 14 until April 7 and rose above flood stage again on May 1. The river has been within one or two feet of flood stage at Glasgow, Boonville and Jefferson City ever since.
The 2:30 p.m. Sunday reading at Glasgow was 30.65 feet, up 2.3 feet since Friday and forecast to crest at 35.7 feet Tuesday morning, 10.7 feet above flood stage. That is about 3 feet above the crest in this year’s first round of flooding in March and April but below the 37.35 feet recorded May 29 and the third highest river crest on record.
At Boonville, the 2:30 p.m. level was 27.07 feet, up 2.4 feet since Friday and forecast to crest at 31.9 feet by Tuesday afternoon, 10.9 feet above flood stage. That is also about 2 feet above the crest in the March-April flooding. The highest level this year, 33.73 feet on May 31, is the second highest flood crest recorded at Boonville.
For Jefferson City, the 2:30 p.m. reading was 26.89 feet, up 2.4 feet since Friday and expected to crest Wednesday at 31.5 feet, 8.5 feet above flood stage. That is 3 feet higher than the April 1 crest, during the first floods of the year. The river reached 33.44 on the Jefferson City gauge on June 5, the fourth highest crest on record at that location.