The water district that services the small town of Edgar Springs has the best tasting drinking water in Missouri for 2023.

Public Water District Number One in Phelps County took home the honor this year. Howard Baker is the Executive Director of the Missouri Rural Water Association.

“Everybody that wants to enter sends a water sample to our office,” Baker said. “We rotate every year a group of five or six people that actually go through the initial first taste test, and they look at it, they look to see how clear it is, and how it tastes and how it smells – kind of the three big things.”

The criteria is used to narrow the competitors down to five finalists, then down to the eventual winner. Next, the water district for Edgar Springs will compete for the title of best drinking water in the U-S, with judging to be held in Washington D-C later this year.

“One of the things that we started doing this year is, these winners will have a sign — a road sign — that we’re making for them,” Baker said. “They can put (it) up (at) the city limits or city hall, that states that they have the best tasting water in Missouri for this year.”

Up next, Phelps County P-W-D 1 will compete in Washington D.C. for the nation’s best drinking water.

“It’s all-expense paid trip to go to D.C.,” Baker said. “We pay for their flights, their rooms, their meals while they’re there. And we encourage them to bring two individuals – like the (water district) operator or the mayor – somebody from the town to represent them up there at the National (contest).”

Baker said Missouri water districts has won the Bronze twice before in the competition for the nation’s best drinking water.

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