Our Land, Our Water, Our Future

The key to success in life is planning.  Knowing what is on the horizon allows us to predict what the next few weeks, months or even years will look like.  But in the world of land conservation, we are often surprised by what walks in the door or calls on the phone.  Fortunately, these “surprises” are usually wonderful, in the form of magnificent parcels of land or unexpected opportunities with conservation partners. True, my nature prefers to know exactly what is going to happen next but I’ve learned to be less rigid and go with the flow.

Sometimes the unexpected comes in the form of something that really changes your world.  That change for HeadWaters comes in the form of Camp Michi-Lu-Ca, a new land acquisition by the J. A. Woollam Foundation. This former camp is in the process of being restored back to a more natural setting. Through a partnership between the J.A. Woollam Foundation and HeadWaters Land Conservancy we invite you to join us at what will become our next nature preserve and community conservation area. This magnificent property is located in Fairview, Michigan and is the site of this year’s Annual Appreciation Picnic. During the August 1st gathering, we will be unveiling our very ambitious plans for the future and hope to be joined by Dr. John Woollam so that you can hear his story of how all of this came to be.

We are very anxious to share our plans with each and every contributor, volunteer, conservation easement donor and partner.  Because of your support throughout the years, because of your diligence and faith, and because of your deep love for the land of northeast Michigan, HeadWaters Land Conservancy now has the opportunity to transform into an organization with endless opportunities and possibilities.  There is no better way to express our gratitude to you than to simply say “Thank You” and promise that we will continue to give you our very best.

Laura Justin

Executive Director

HeadWaters Land Conservancy

Bringing the Outdoors In: Wildlife Exhibit

 

BRINGING THE OUTDOORS IN: WILDLIFE EXHIBIT

Do you or someone you know have a wildlife artifact that they would like to donate to HeadWaters Land Conservancy? HWLC is curating a wildlife exhibit that showcases the wildlife that call northern Michigan home. We enjoy taking these artifacts to a variety of different places to teach people about the different animals that live in northeast Michigan.

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Protecting the Great Au Sable River

Introducing our 81st Conservation Easement

Conservation easements are one of the most powerful, effective tools available for the permanent conservation of private lands in the United States. The use of conservation easements has successfully protected millions of acres of wildlife habitat and open space, keeping land in private hands and offering significant public benefits. Together land trusts in Michigan have protected nearly 600,000 acres and counting. HeadWaters Land Conservancy is proud to offer landowners the expertise and tools needed to protect significant land throughout northeast Michigan. With each and every acre we protect we are strengthening the collective efforts of land conservancies throughout the state, while protecting the “Up North” we all enjoy. Continue reading

Centennial Farm Protected from Future Development

By Cheryl Holladay

Steve Gardner, a fifth-generation farmer in Markey Township, celebrated the preservation of 240 acres of his almost 500-acre farm in Markey Township Sept. 12 in a Centennial Farm and conservation easement dedication, led by the HeadWaters Land Conservancy.

Gardner was joined by HeadWaters’ Executive Director Laura Justin and Development, Communication and Outreach Coordinator Paul Kogelschatz, as well as AmeriCorps Land Stewardship Coordinator Libby Benjamin, representatives from the Higgins Lake Foundation and Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy and friends from the area.

The farm has been owned by the Gardner family for more than 100 years. Gardner said he had attended a farm conference on how to save family farms and later contacted Justin to tell her about his goals. Continue reading