1. Chuck & Jill Haubrich
Chuck and Jill Haubrich donated a conservation easement in December, 2000, on their 88 acres in Rochester. With the easement, 50 acres of mature forest, 31 acres planted with 22,000 trees and shrubs, and six acres of high quality sedge meadow wetlands are permanently protected from development. The parcel is located in a several hundred acre primary environmental corridor. In 2004 a forest management plan was written and the land entered in the Wisconsin Managed Forest Law.
2. Schmitz Family Farm
Mary Urhausen donated a conservation easement in November, 2006, permanently protecting the 19 acre Schmitz family farm, the last remaining homesteaded farm in Racine on the shores of lake Michigan. Dr. Urhausen and her aunt are preserving not only critical shoreline, but open space and history as the original house, built in 1864, and barn, built in 1862, remain in use on the property and are also protected by the easement.
3. Knuth Family Farm
In December 2007 the Knuth family, under the leadership of sisters Gloria Weiss and Marilyn Duda, selected a conservation easement as the tool to protect their 11.9 acre family farm from development.
4. Steven Ryder
As a second step in protecting the Knuth farm, the Knuth family sold 31 acres to Dr. Steven Ryder with the condition that the land be permanently protected from development with a conservation easement. In November, 2006, Dr. Ryder complied by donating an easement on his new parcel which abuts the Renak-Polak Woods, a state-designated natural area. Dr. Ryder’s land will serve as a buffer, protecting a portion of this critical environmental corridor. Land stewardship is about connections with soil, vegetation, and wildlife.
5. Barbara and Royse Myers
In June, 2007, the Myers donated a conservation easement on their 232 acres, which are bounded by Hwys 31 and 32 and Four and Five Mile Roads in Caledonia. Included are a rare, remnant, old-growth beech and maple forest and a 35 acre lake. Wildlife, particularly deer, are also plentiful. The Myers property is adjacent to the Tabor Woods Environmental Corridor. The property was once an abandoned quarry. To create this wildlife paradise, Royse and Barbara spent over 20 years acquiring adjoining lots, clearing out rubbish, and planting thousands of trees.
6. Brightonwoods Orchard
In July, 2007, Bill and Judy Stone, along with Judy’s sister, Paula Puntenney, signed a conservation easement on their 114 acre Brightonwoods Orchard. The easement ensures the land will remain either in agriculture or allowed to revert to natural land In addition, the Stones donated an easement on their adjoining 5 acre homestead. The two easement areas abut the Bong Recreation Area. Judith and Paula grew up on the property, where, along with Bill, they now operate Brightonwoods Orchard. They raise apples, including over 100 rare heirloom varieties.
7. Warren Close
In December, 2007, Warren Close donated a conservation easement to ensure his 20.5 acre parcel, located in an environmental corridor in Salem, will always remain a sanctuary for wildlife. Made up of mature woods and a small prairie and pond, an unusually large number of species thrive on the site. Warren especially enjoys noting the wide variety of ducks frequenting the half acre pond. Over the years he has observed all the ducks native to Wisconsin.
8. Mary Wackerhagen
In December, 2009, Mary Wackerhagen donated a conservation easement on her 0.7 acre lot located on Lake Michigan in Wind Point. The easement prohibits buildings of any type and provides a small, but valuable refuge for wildlife.