Protect Mossy Point & Make Kenneglenn Whole
The Kenneglenn Scenic & Nature Preserve in Wales is one of our most important properties. Its deep gorge on Hunters Creek is an iconic natural wonder. Mossy Point is its other half—an expansive forest on the other side of Hunters Creek that was sold off long before the community protected Kenneglenn.
After waiting for many years, the Land Conservancy now has the rare opportunity to buy this adjacent land and make Kenneglenn whole! The Land Conservancy has received a $100,000 challenge gift from the Gallogly Family Foundation toward the purchase and protection of Mossy Point (learn more about that gift here). Right now, we need community members to match the challenge gift and donate enough to save Mossy Point by the end of the year. Each dollar you donate now will be doubled until the challenge gift has been matched. WATCH: Spectrum News report on Mossy Point.
If you wish to save Mossy Point, DONATE HERE. There are naming opportunities:
- One donor of $350,000 will be able to name the preserve
- Donors of $200,000 will have a trail named in their honor
- One donor of $150,000 will have a ‘nature megaphone’ named in their honor (see photo below courtesy of the Little Traverse Conservancy in Michigan)
- Donors of $30,000 will have a bench named in their honor
- Donors of $10,000 or more will have their name listed on a plaque permanently placed at the preserve
- Donors of more than $2,000 will be recognized in the East Aurora Advertiser
In the early 1920s, Buffalo’s Charles and Florence Kennedy purchased a massive property in Wales. Hunters Creek ran right through the middle of the land, carving small waterfalls and a deep gorge. They spent countless days with their five children hiking the creek, searching for crayfish, and having adventures in the forest.
Charles and Florence’s children eventually grew up and had children of their own. These grandchildren moved all over the country. As the years passed, the family had less time to visit and maintain the land, and they had to let it go.
Over the decades, many people in the community came to cherish this land. When it went up for sale, the community came together to purchase 131 acres of the Kennedys’ property, all on the west side of Hunters Creek. This 131 acres became the Kenneglenn Scenic and Nature Preserve that we protect today. But the Kennedys’ land on the other side of the creek was sold to a different landowner, separating it from the nature preserve.
Hundreds of people of all ages now visit Kenneglenn each year. Geology hikes through Hunters Creek and its gorge, bird hikes in the forest, and garlic mustard pulls are well-loved traditions.
We often walk to the top of the gorge at Kenneglenn and gaze at the forest on the other side of the creek. Its massive oaks, rolling hills, and misty valleys are enchanting. Beautiful hemlocks give the land color even during the snowiest winters. The deep woods are ideal for nesting barred owls and warblers.
In October 2017, the Land Conservancy signed a contract giving us two years to purchase 222 acres of this forest across Hunters Creek, which will nearly triple the size of Kenneglenn. We will have to raise at least $1.6 million to buy the land, create a new trail system, and steward the property in perpetuity. This is the beginning of that journey.
We have heard stories of a glen with massive oaks; hikes through the woods that would last all day; children camping all weekend in the shelter of the glades.
Mossy Point lies on the other side of the creek, a place legendary for its beauty and tranquility. Ancient beds of ferns and thick wildflowers cover the forest floor and the clear waters of Hunters Creek splash over small shale ledges into cool pools below.
Now we have the chance to protect this land and open it to the community. New walking trails can connect the forests on both sides of the creek. A new entrance will make the preserve easier to access even when we aren’t hosting a hike.
Protecting the missing piece of Kenneglenn will have an impact beyond our community. With the adjacent Hunters Creek County Park, we will form a 1,100-acre protected area. This will be one of the largest patches of protected forests in the entire Niagara River watershed. As an intact headwater forest, this land will provide clean water and prevent flooding for the hundreds of thousands of families living downstream. This affects everyone in the Great Lakes.
We have until December 31, 2019 to raise at least $1.6 million to make this dream a reality. If you are interested in being a part of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, please contact us.
You can also make a donation on our online giving page today. You can also donate by sending a check to the Western New York Land Conservancy, P.O. Box 471, East Aurora, NY 14052.