Effigy Mounds Quarter Launch Ceremony Highlights

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Richard Masters
Richard Masters, Artistic Infusion Program artist and fourth generation Iowan, waves to the crowd as he is recognized for his design of the Effigy Mounds National Monument quarter. U.S. Mint photo by Sharon McPike.

On Tuesday, Feb. 7, United States Mint quarters celebrating Iowa’s Effigy Mounds National Monument were formerly introduced to the public.

Chairman Edmore Green, Superintendent Jim Nepstad, and United States Mint Plant Superintendent Marc Landry
Chairman Edmore Green, Superintendent Jim Nepstad, and United States Mint Plant Superintendent Marc Landry take part in the ceremonial coin pour during the launch of the Effigy Mounds National Monument quarter in Waukon, IA, Feb 7, 2017. U.S. Mint photo by Jill Westeyn.

Around 1,700 people went to the launch ceremony hosted by officials from the U.S. Mint and National Park Service.

"The Effigy Mounds quarter design embodies the spirit of this sacred landscape," said Marc Landry, Superintendent of the United States Mint at Philadelphia. "This new coin honors a special place where ancient people changed the landscape of their world in the most extraordinary way."

Attendees included more than 1,250 schoolchildren who received an Effigy Mounds quarter for free.

Crowd Shot
A crowd of about 1,700 people witnesses the ceremonial. U.S. Mint photo by Jill Westeyn.

Children hold their new quarter
Children hold their new quarter. U.S. Mint photo by Jill Westeyn

Children hold their new quarter
Children hold their new quarter. U.S. Mint photo by Jill Westeyn

The event featured members of local Native American tribes and a Junior Ranger high school student that earned her first badge from Effigy Mounds and has visited over 260 national parks.

Junior Ranger Aida Frey and Superintendent Jim Nepstad
High school student and Junior Ranger Aida Frey receives a new quarter from Superintendent Jim Nepstad. Frey has visited over 260 national parks. U.S. Mint photo by Sharon McPike.
Honor Guard
The Andrew Blackhawk American Legion Post No. 129 presents the colors during the launch ceremony. U.S. Mint photo by Jill Westeyn.

The video message from native Iowan astronaut Peggy Whitson from the International Space Station was a hit; the crowd was entertained by 4th grade students singing the Nifty Fifty States song; representatives from the national Iowa Congressional delegation delivered remarks; and fourth-generation Iowan Richard Masters, who designed the new quarter, received special recognition. Masters, an artist in the U.S. Mint’s Artistic Infusion Program, has designed coins and medals for the United States Mint for more than 10 years.

InternationalSpaceStation
Dr. Peggy Whitson, native Iowan and NASA astronaut, delivers a video message from the International Space Station played during the ceremonial launch. Screen shot courtesy of NASA.
Master of Ceremonies
Jerry Gallagher, local news anchor and reporter, served as Master of Ceremonies during the launch ceremony. U.S. Mint photo by Sharon McPike.
Richard Masters
Richard Masters, Artistic Infusion Program artist and fourth generation Iowan, waves to the crowd as he is recognized for his design of the Effigy Mounds National Monument quarter. U.S. Mint photo by Sharon McPike.

Kerndt Brothers Saving Bank in Waukon sponsored a coin exchange that followed the ceremony. The local bank exchanged about $23,000 in D-mint mark quarters.

Coin Exchange
Rolls of Effigy Mounds quarters are exchanged after the launch ceremony. U.S. Mint photo by Sharon McPike.

Another highlight for 75 collectors and local enthusiasts was a coin forum held on the evening before the ceremony.

Effigy Mounds quarters started entering circulation on Monday, Feb. 6. On the same day, the U.S. Mint released Fort Moultrie quarters in rolls and bags. Available options include coins struck at the San Francisco, Denver and Philadelphia Mints at prices that range from $18.95 to $46.95.

The U.S. Mint’s America the Beautiful Quarters® Program was introduced in 2010 and will commemorate 56 national parks and other sites through 2021. The Effigy Mounds quarter is the 36th released and the first of the five for 2017.

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