Federal Officials Launch New Del. Quarter Honoring State's Natur - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Federal Officials Launch New Del. Quarter Honoring State's Nature

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Young student holds freshly minted quarter bearing design honoring Delaware's Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge. (Photo: WBOC) Young student holds freshly minted quarter bearing design honoring Delaware's Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge. (Photo: WBOC)
New quarter bearing design honoring Delaware's Bombay Hook Wildlife Refuge in Smyrna. (Photo: WBOC) New quarter bearing design honoring Delaware's Bombay Hook Wildlife Refuge in Smyrna. (Photo: WBOC)
A father takes photos of his two daughters holding their first brand new quarter honoring Delaware's Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge in Smyrna. (Photo: WBOC) A father takes photos of his two daughters holding their first brand new quarter honoring Delaware's Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge in Smyrna. (Photo: WBOC)
Delaware Sen. Chris Coons gives remarks at ceremony launching Delaware's new minted quarter bearing design that honors the state's Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge in Smyrna. (Photo: WBOC) Delaware Sen. Chris Coons gives remarks at ceremony launching Delaware's new minted quarter bearing design that honors the state's Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge in Smyrna. (Photo: WBOC)

SMYRNA, Del. -- History was made at the Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge in Smyrna Friday as federal officials unveiled a new Delaware quarter.

Executives from the United States Mint and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service launched a new quarter design honoring Bombay Hook.

It was an exciting day for Delawareans, coin collectors and nature enthusiasts as many collected $10 rolls of freshly minted quarters bearing a design symbolizing Delaware's natural beauty. 

"I got four rolls," said bird watcher and photographer Dan Laughman of Magnolia. "And I greatly appreciate the Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge. It's a fabulous place for birders."

On the quarter is a great blue heron in the foreground and a great egret in the background, just two types of frequent visitors at Bombay Hook.

"I'm a frequent visitor," said Heidi Deming of Smyrna. "I live 10 minutes down the road and I just really enjoy the refuge and it's very exciting to have a quarter launched."

Ten minutes down the street shrinks in comparison to the 1,100-mile, 15-hour drive it took conservationist Barry Smith and his native Delawarean wife to attend the launch.

"I got two rolls of quarters to take back to Florida about environmental conservation. It's been a great event and I'm happy to be here," said Smith.

Manager for the sanctuary Oscar Reed says he hopes the quarter piques people's interest to visit Delaware.

"They'll see the quarter and say, 'Hey come to Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge.' It's a unique opportunity for folks to come out and visit," said Reed. 

For Bombay Hook's Project Leader Al Rizzo, a deeper and more personal tie connects him to the coin.

"That's why it's so special to me because this is home to me. My only regret is that is my mom and dad couldn't be here," said Rizzo.

And for the parents witnessing their children receive their first piece of history, it's a moment now etched in their own.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says national wildlife refuges drive the economy supporting thousands of jobs in tourism recreation and hospitality. Every dollar spent at a wildlife refuge goes right back into local communities.

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