What We've Been Up to...

McHenry County Conservation Foundation Purchases 160 acre Camp Lakota
A Rare Land Protection Opportunity 
The McHenry County Conservation Foundation—with the help of Illinois Audubon Society, Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation, and individual donors—purchased one of the last remaining, high-quality natural areas not under permanent protection in McHenry County.  Thanks to donor support, a 160-acre parcel in Hartland Township formally known as Camp Lakota, has been permanently protected for the benefit of all McHenry County residents. The property is adjacent the Conservation District’s Brookdale Conservation Area, a 1,620 acre complex of wetlands, prairie, and woodlands. A significant stand of remnant oak trees exist on the property and the juxtaposition of woodland and wetlands make this property ideal for supporting breeding populations of amphibians. The land also serves as an important recharge area for the county’s groundwater resources.

Ensuring the Vitality of our Wetlands
Over the past two years, Foundation support has made it possible for District staff to manage more than 60 acres of the Elizabeth Lake site. This work includes removing buckthorn and hiring a contractor with access to the appropriate equipment to apply herbicide to purple loosestrife and Phragmites. The Distict was also able to purchase a necessary mulching attachment for one of their tractors and use it to cut invasive brush, which opens up the area and gives native plants the opportunity to reestablish themselves.  
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Empowering Youth Through Programming
Youth and Family Center of McHenry approached McHenry County Conservation Foundation this summer with a funding request to cover the cost of transporting people to a District-hosted program in Cary. With the cost of bus rental covered, forty children and adults from Youth and Family Services braved the 110-degree heat to make it out to The Hollows on July 1 for a family-oriented canoeing and fishing program on Lake Atwood. 
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Foundation Awarded Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation Grant

Thanks to the generosity of so many people, the matching grant portion of the challenge has been completed! We deeply appreciate the support and there are still plenty of opportunities to volunteer! Help us reach 400 volunteers hours and earn an additional $4,000!
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