(Chelsea Update would like to thank Gregg V. Burg, board chairman of the Waterloo Natural History Association for the information in this story.)
There was a terrific turnout for the Yellow Door fundraiser for the Waterloo Natural History Association boardwalk replacement project on March 2 at the Chelsea Alehouse.
About $3,700 was raised for the project that’s expected to cost about $5,000.
“We succeeded in raising almost $3,700 during the two-hour event,” said Gregg Burg, board chairman of the Waterloo Natural History Association, adding “I was overwhelmed by the community support.”
At this time, WNHA has raised about $7,000 for the boardwalk replacement project and Gary Jones, the Waterloo Recreation Area park manager, and I have also applied for a Partnership Match Program grant with the DNR to match the $7,000.”
Burg said the group will know whether the grant funding was approved in late April.
He said WNHA will be purchasing the materials for the boardwalk, probably through the Chelsea Lumber Company “as they really want to support this project.”
The WNHA will then donate the materials and park staff will do the work.
“The original plan was to just replace the portions of the boardwalks that were in the most need of replacement, but if we can get this grant then we feel that we could replace all of all the boardwalks on the trails around the Eddy Discovery Center.”
The Bog Trail and the Lowland Woods Trail are the only trails that have boardwalks on them.
Work on the boardwalks is expected to begin in early June — after the school groups have finished their field trips to the Eddy Discovery Center for the school year.
WNHA has been around since 1981, Burg said, “and we are one of the oldest, if not the oldest, friends group in the state supporting a Michigan State Park facility.”
The small group was thrilled by the support of the Chelsea community.
“Though a lot of people come and walk the trails, and attend the programs we sponsor at the Discovery Center, there are still a lot of people who don’t know about the Discovery Center and many have been living in this area all of their lives,” he said.