New Company to Manage Echo Bluff Lodge Concessions

EMINENCE, MO, JAN. 11, 2023 – ExplorUS, formally Ortega National Parks, a hospitality management company operating in parks across the country, will manage the lodging, dining, retail and banquet facilities at the Echo Bluff State Park beginning this year.

Echo Bluff started out as a summer youth camp called Camp Zoe over 85 years ago and is now a year-round outdoor destination where visitors create memories as they experience all the Ozarks have to offer. The impressive lodge is just 5 years old and features hotel rooms and cabins, meeting space, a dining room and retail area.

The new concession company, ExplorUS, is thrilled to add Echo Bluff to its portfolio and has committed to adding new activities and events, such as girls’ getaways, stargazing, arts and craft shows and more. 

“We can’t wait to start working at Echo Bluff,” said Frank Pikus, CEO of ExplorUS.  “Our team is excited to start developing new programs that will interest Missouri patrons as well as draw new travelers to the area.  We are especially happy that many of the previous employees have chosen to stay with us which should assist with a smooth transition for those folks that frequent the hotel and restaurant on an annual basis.”

“We’d like to thank Guest Services for their time working at Echo Bluff,” said David Kelly, director of the Division of Missouri State Parks. ““We are excited to work with ExplorUS and look forward to the new opportunities they will offer our guests,”

ExplorUS is dedicated to preserving and protecting the unique environments and precious resources of the sites where it operates, allowing guests and future generations to experience the beauty, serenity, and splendor of local, state, and national parks. It provides concession services at 50 locations nationwide including four other Missouri State Parks: Lake of the Ozarks, Montauk, Sam A. Baker and Lake Wappapello. You can find out more about ExplorUS at

Rooms and cabins are available for rent year-round. More information can be found at or by calling 855-999-6980

For more information on state parks and historic sites, visit Missouri State Parks is a division of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

Loretta Bittle –[email protected]
Amy Trimble – [email protected]