Hunterdon Land Trust celebrates 25 years of preservation

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Thanks to the Hunterdon Land Trust, Hunterdon County has successfully resisted the pressure to transform into a suburban wasteland.

The nonprofit, which celebrates its 25th year in 2021, has preserved more than 10,280 acres in Hunterdon County. It’s 16 square miles, a little smaller than all of Union Township.

“But we are by no means resting on our laurels,” said Patricia Ruby, executive director of Hunterdon Land Trust. “While we have accomplished a lot, there is still a lot of work to be done.”

The organization has 21 ongoing preservation projects in several townships, including Readington, Kingwood, Bethlehem, Franklin, Raritan, Lambertville and Holland.

Most recently, he helped facilitate the preservation of 28.7 acres of open space on the Fitzgerald land and 106 acres of farmland and open space on the Saums property, both in Readington; the 135-acre Silva Farm in Holland Township; and 104 acres of open space at the Maritan property in Kingwood.

In addition, Hunterdon Land Trust is working on the future restoration of Dvoor Farm, which serves as its headquarters on Route 12.

Plans call for the rehabilitation of barns to be used for children’s camps, company retreats, weddings and other celebrations of life, and educational programs; improving infrastructure to provide improved public toilets, circulation and parking; and the restoration of natural resources for the benefit of grasslands and pollinator wetlands, streams and stormwater management.

The Hunterdon Land Trust is headquartered at Dvoor Farm on the Route 12 roundabout in Raritan Township.

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“As Hunterdon Land Trust celebrates our anniversary, no project has been more vital to connecting the past, present and future of all we serve than the transformation of Dvoor Farm,” said Ruby. “This effort will ensure that the farm remains a place where families and friends come together to remember the past and forge new memories; enabling more people to enjoy a range of educational and recreational opportunities that honor the agricultural, cultural and natural heritage of Hunterdon County, while stimulating the local economy.

Hunterdon Land Trust partners with city, county and state governments and other not-for-profit organizations. She works diligently with landowners who wish to permanently protect the ecological, agricultural, landscape, historical or recreational qualities of their territory.

The organization also strives to help landowners identify the best options to meet their conservation goals and financial needs, helping them every step of the way in the preservation process.

Although the official anniversary is in October, the organization will celebrate by hosting several events before and after this month.

Later this year, the Hunterdon Land Trust will be hosting a barn and house tour at Dvoor Farm. It will also host several virtual programs, including a virtual 25th anniversary celebration and fundraiser on September 19.

For more information on all these events, visit www.hunterdonlandtrust.org.

Email: mdeak@mycentraljersey.com

Mike Deak is a reporter for mycentraljersey.com. To get unlimited access to his Somerset and Hunterdon Counties articles, please subscribe or activate your digital account today.

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