Natural Areas Stewardship Thanksgiving: Thank you!

With Thanksgiving tomorrow, I want to take a few minutes to share my thanks.

I’d first like to say thank you to the many people who had a vision for preserving land and natural features many years ago, and put in the work to make it happen. The township parks that are a great place to learn and grow would not be what they are without their dedication and hard work. As I’ve learned about the natural areas in our parks, I’ve been impressed with the commitment to setting aside land to preserve the rural character and high quality natural features in our township. Thanks also to the residents of the township for supporting this vision. Some of those people who were instrumental in land preservation are seen in this video about the history of the history of the Paint Creek Trail, but I’m sure there are many more people joined in the effort.

Second, I’d like to thank the people who volunteered with natural areas stewardship this past year. It was exciting to see a variety of people come out to help tend native plant gardens, clear trails, and remove invasive woody  plants. Your work keeps our natural areas beautiful!

SEMSCC crew, Bear Creek Nature Park, July 2014.
Southeast Michigan Student Conservation Crew, Bear Creek Nature Park, July 2014.
Volunteers at the workday on Saturday: Jim,  Debbie, and Mary. Way to go team!
Volunteers at the workday at Blue Heron Environmental Area: Jim, Debbie, and Mary. Way to go team!
Our crew worked hard and got a lot done on Saturday, July 12.
The crew worked hard and got a lot done on Saturday, July 12.
Join us for lots of fun at the next volunteer workday!
Debbie, Matt, Alex, and Jonah destroyed some buckthorn at our first volunteer workday at Lost Lake Nature Park, June 2014.

Finally, I’d like to thank all of you for reading this blog! I love this opportunity to share my observations and work throughout the township parks. The blog has been viewed over 1600 times since it was launched in late June. I’m honored that you take time to read the blog. If you ever have any questions or would like me to cover a topic please let me know.

Thanks!

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About Ben VanderWeide

I am the Natural Areas Stewardship Manager for Oakland Township Parks and Recreation in southeast Michigan. I have a doctorate in biology (focused on plant ecology) and I am passionate about protecting and managing natural areas.

3 thoughts on “Natural Areas Stewardship Thanksgiving: Thank you!

  1. Dr. Ben,

    We would like to thank you for your leadership in helping Oakland Township preserve the beauty that it has so all future generations can enjoy it too. Your knowledge and expertise is exactly what we needed and we thank you for creating this website. Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving.

    Dick Michalski

  2. The video is an outstanding record of “How we got to where we are”. Citizens should watch the video and recognize the talent, skill and dedication of those who helped make it happen. Hopefully the present leaders in our Township continue to create a legacy that future generations will cherish as much as we cherish Peggy, Alice, Mark, and George.

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