August 5, 2016 LGLC Event Raises Funds, Launches Land Protection Initiatives
For Immediate Release: August 5, 2016
Bolton Landing, NY – The Lake George Land Conservancy (LGLC) raised more than $190,000 to launch several land protection initiatives on Friday, August 5, 2016, at its 17th Land and Water Conservation Celebration.
To date, the annual event, which is the LGLC’s primary benefit dinner and auction, has generated over a million dollars towards the LGLC’s programs that protect the land that protects the lake. These funds have allowed the LGLC to purchase lands vital to protecting water quality.
Over 200 people joined together for the LGLC’s 17th annual Celebration to exceed their goal for specific projects and make a lasting, substantial impact on Lake George.
Three significant land conservation initiatives were launched that evening: Indian Brook/Northwest Bay Initiative, Bridge the Nose Initiative, and McAvinney Project.
The Indian Brook/Northwest Bay Initiative focuses on protecting the land that protects the water quality of Indian Brook, one of the top ten tributaries of Lake George. Studies indicate that the tree canopy and streamside habitat of Indian Brook are currently substantially impacted. The Lake George Land Conservancy identified three projects that will protect the most important features of Indian Brook, two of which are already in progress.
The acquisition of the 129-acre SUNY Albany property, the former site of the University of Albany telescope and observatory, includes the protection of 100 acres of wetlands, the confluence of the two main branches of Indian Brook, and 2,200 feet of stream corridor. SUNY Albany will use the proceeds from the sale of this property to fund student scholarships for environmental-related academic programs. The LGLC closed on this property in January of 2016.
The Isabel La Roche Godwin Preserve is a 114-acre parcel that protects 1,000 feet of stream corridor as well as several acres of vernal pools, and creates a wonderful connection between the DEC Pole Hill Pond property and LGLC’s Amy’s Park. This land was acquired in June of 2016, and is currently open to hikers.
Funds raised at the Gala will be used to pay for a third project – the establishment of two donated conservation easements that will protect riparian areas along Indian Brook. The LGLC will cover all expenses associated with the easements, including stewardship costs, legal fees, appraisals, and other transaction costs. A capital campaign will be started to cover the remaining costs of the other projects and related transaction costs.
Bridge the Nose
The Bridge the Nose Initiative focuses on linking the South Mountain ridge trail that will run from Mount Defiance down to the LGLC’s Last Great Shoreline and Gull Bay Preserves, in the northeastern region of Lake George. Additionally, this initiative will add two new properties to these existing preserves, capping a ten year effort of protecting over 2,000 acres in the area in an effort to protect the water quality of Sucker Brook, one of the top ten tributaries of Lake George.
Funds raised at the Celebration will be used to pay for the acquisition of the Bain property, a 55-acre wetland that is currently under immediate threat from logging. The land contains a unique white cedar swamp, and its conservation will provide expanded public recreational and wildlife viewing opportunities.
Two other projects are in progress. The protection of the “Dodge” property, a 25-acre parcel in Putnam adjacent to DEC’s Flat Rock property, could serve as a vital access link between the South Mountain ridge trail, the DEC land, and proposed trails that will connect to existing LGLC preserves.
The LGLC is also working to protect a 72-acre parcel almost entirely comprised of wetlands, with unique habitat. Sucker Brook flows through the property and directly into Lake George. This property is also connected to existing LGLC property and would further enhance recreational and educational opportunities in the region.
This project provides a unique partnership opportunity between the LGLC and the Lake George Association (LGA) to protect the lake. The LGLC will acquire two undeveloped lots in a Lake George subdivision that has adversely affected the natural flow of stormwater into the lake. The LGA will then restore the land to create a natural floodplain to slow down the flow of stormwater and reduce its impact on the surrounding properties. This joint project will take pressure off of the lake from the negative effect of fast-flowing stormwater and allow the land to go back to its natural function of protecting the lake.
Other projects funded during the Celebration include the LGLC’s annual Hike-A-Thon, and the extension of the dock at the Last Great Shoreline Preserve in Putnam.