If you shop at Amazon and opt to use AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to LRWP if that is the charitable organization of your choice. Please visit smile.amazon.com for details and take this easy step to bring more funds to LRWP. Every item available for purchase on Amazon is also available on smile.amazon.com at the same price.
Earth Day Fort Wayne 2017 at Eagle Marsh will again feature a rain barrel painting contest--and your school, grade, class, or Scout group can enter! The barrels will be auctioned off at the event (April 30) to benefit LRWP. Reserve your barrel by January 16. For more information and to apply, click here.
A 38-acre parcel recently added to Eagle Marsh will be named in honor of the James Barrett family, long-time benefactors of LRWP. The James Barrett Family site of Eagle Marsh, at the northeast corner of Smith and Engle Roads, is a mitigation property replacing 12 acres at Eagle Marsh covered over during recent federal construction. When James Barrett III passed away in 2011, his estate (which included inheritances from James Barrett I and II) made a considerable bequest to our organization.
Eagle Marsh, already the largest inland urban wetland restoration in the U.S., is 756 acres with the addition of the new site. Nine acres there consist of natural wooded wetlands where many kinds of ducks, great egrets and sandhill cranes have been seen. In the past year a federal program cleared invasive plants in this area and restored the other 29 acres to open marsh and wet prairie by seeding them with native grasses, sedges, and wildflowers.
James Barrett III was one of the founders of both LRWP and Acres Land Trust and, with wife Patricia, provided support to LRWP from its early years until his death. A lawyer and champion of the environment, he drafted the Indiana Nature Preserves Act under which more than 200 Indiana natural areas have been dedicated.
More than 100 people joined LRWP, Ducks Unlimited and state and federal dignitaries to celebrate the opening of the new Gateway to Eagle Marsh entrance area and Continental Divide Trail on October 8. The new Eagle Marsh sign made of Indiana limestone was unveiled and several brief presentations made. During one by John Goss, Asian Carp Director of the federal construction project to prevent problematic aquatic species from crossing between the Great Lakes and Mississippi River watersheds at Eagle Marsh, one of the preserve's resident bald eagles made an appearance overhead.
At 10:30AM, the new 5K Continental Divide trail was opened for about 80 people to join an inaugural hike with Betsy Yankowiak, LRWP’s Director of Preserves and Programs. Much of the trail is on top the Graham-McCulloch Ditch berm enlarged during last year’s construction, allowing visitors to view almost the entire preserve from above. This construction slightly moved the continental divide.
A number of other trails that had been closed due to the construction were also reopened at the event. Hikes on the Continental Divide trail (Trail 5) and Eagle Marsh Trail 8 are part of the Allen County Trailblazers program.