Winter on Cottonwood Lake. Photo: Dave Heath

Cottonwood Lake preservation group surpasses $50,000 fundraising goal

In 28 days, 393 donors have contributed to the fund

Submitted

An effort to protect a recreational area near Nelson has surpassed its $50,000 crowdfunding goal in less than a month

The fundraising campaign, supported by 393 donors so far, is being led by the newly formed Cottonwood Lake Preservation Society. Their goal is to save two large parcels of private land surrounding Cottonwood Lake and the Apex cross-country ski area from logging.

“The community support for this campaign has been rapid and very strong,” said Andrew McBurney, spokesperson for the society.

“Meeting our $50,000 crowdfunding goal so quickly sends a clear message: the community deeply cares about Cottonwood Lake and the Apex area. We hope to multiply the GoFundMe fund by matching it with grants and government partnerships over the next month.”

Benefit concerts for the society are being planned at the Spirit Bar (Jan. 26) and Bloom Nightclub (Feb. 7). The society is also organizing letter-writing events at the Nelson Public Library (Jan. 19 and Feb. 9).

“The ultimate goal is to get the land into public hands,” said McBurney.

In the meantime, the Cottonwood Lake Preservation Society has submitted an expression of interest for the Canada Nature Fund and is pursuing other grant opportunities. The society plans to make an appeal for support at the next Regional District of Central Kootenay board meeting with the aim of preserving the land as a regional park.

“The highly visible Cottonwood-Apex area contains a sensitive wetland ecosystem that feeds two watersheds and local water licences, an important wildlife corridor for grizzly bears and other large mammals,” according to a news release from the society.

“It’s also a popular and well-planned recreational area including a mountain biking and cross-country ski trail network, fishing, hiking, and skating.”

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