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Merrill Linn Conservancy (MLC) representatives and Turtle Creek Park Association (TCPA) board members gathered at the Dale’s Ridge trailhead for the official presentation of TCPA’s donation check in late January. From left, Jeff Trop, MLC president; Chad North, MLC Capital Campaign-Endowment Fund chair; TCPA board members Brianna Apfelbaum Kula and Char Gray; Brianna’s daughter Clare Kula; Geoff Goodenow, MLC coordinator and Adrienne Gemberling, MLC vice president.

LEWISBURG — The Merrill Linn Conservancy received a donation of $9,257 from the Turtle Creek Park Association at a presentation held at the Dale’s Ridge trailhead in late January. The check was presented to the conservancy as one of the final steps in the dissolution of the park association.

The Turtle Creek Park Association (TCPA) was formed in 2016 to support the much-loved Turtle Creek dog park, which first opened in 2008 at Furnace and Supplee Mill roads in East Buffalo Township, Union County. In 2018, the owner of the 78-acre site, Hallowing Run Youth Organization, sold the property to Lewisburg Alliance Church. With the subsequent closure of the dog park, the Turtle Creek Park Association’s mission ended.

When a nonprofit, such as the park association, is dissolved, state law requires that its assets be dispersed to another charitable organization or a government agency.

“Our board agreed that the Merrill Linn Conservancy, which shares many of our ideals, should receive the funds,” said Char Gray, a Turtle Creek Park Association board member.

TCPA board member and attorney Brianna Apfelbaum Kula, whose father, the late Michael Apfelbaum, conceived the idea for the dog park, said, “Turtle Creek Park is near and dear to my family and it means a great deal to have the funds raised by passionate community volunteers go to similar efforts stewarded by the Merrill Linn Conservancy. A huge thank you to each and every one of you who work to take care of, preserve, and make available these greenspaces for all to enjoy.”

Commenting on the donation, conservancy president Jeff Trop said, “Supporters of the Turtle Creek Park Association and the Merrill Linn Conservancy are connected by an appreciation of nature and thoughtful land stewardship. The association’s generous donation will foster the conservancy’s dual mission of educating the public and protecting local ecosystems. In particular, this donation will support the conservancy’s Linking Landscapes initiative, which maintains corridors of natural habitat that facilitate movement of plants and animals across the local landscape.”

The Merrill Linn Conservancy is a nonprofit volunteer organization that works to preserve and protect significant ecological sites in Union, upper Northumberland, and contiguous counties and to educate the public on conservation issues critical to the health of our environment. To learn more about the conservancy and its activities, visit www.linnconservancy.org or call 570-524-8666.

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