The Land Conservancy of West Michigan closed the deal on the purchase of a 14-acre property on the Lake Michigan shoreline in Muskegon County.
The property is the organization’s newest public nature preserve. To celebrate, the Land Conservancy is hosting a guided hike of the property on New Year’s Day.
Named Flower Creek Dunes Nature Preserve, the property is located one-quarter mile north of Meinert Park, near Montague in Muskegon County. It features nearly 1,000 feet of scenic Lake Michigan shoreline and is designated by the Department of Environmental Quality as critical dune habitat. The property has a high conservation value because of the increasing scarcity of unspoiled Lake Michigan frontage and because it adds to continuing preservation efforts in the area including Meinert Park and a nearby privately owned conservation easement, both projects that were led by the Land Conservancy.
Flower Creek Dunes Nature Preserve is owned and managed by the Land Conservancy. The property will be open to the public to enjoy low-impact activities such as hiking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, bird watching, and photography.
The total cost of the Flower Creek Dunes project was $1.75 million and was made possible by a number of generous donors. Funding for the remainder of the purchase price was provided by two significant anonymous donors, the J.A. Woollam Foundation, a bequest from Elizabeth (Libby) Getz, and nearly 100 Land Conservancy members.
The Land Conservancy will be hosting a guided hike of the new Flower Creek Dunes Nature Preserve on Jan. 1, 2013. Event details are as follows:
Date/time: Tuesday, January 1 – 1:00-2:00 p.m.
Description: Land Conservancy staff will meet the hike participants at the north end of the Meinert County Park lot (which will be made available by the Muskegon County Parks). The group will walk out to the lakeshore to access Flower Creek Dunes and then participants will be able to pick their own adventure, either staying on the lakeshore for the entirety of the hike, or for a more strenuous option they’ll be able to hike to the top of the dune on the property to look out over Lake Michigan on the first day of 2013.
Directions: From US-31, take the Fruitvale exit #131 and head 0.5 mile west to the four-way stop at Old US-31. Head north 1 mile to Meinert Park Road. The road dead ends at Meinert Park, about 5.5 miles down.
Note: The public restrooms will not be available at Meinert Park.