All posts by Bruce Kingsbury

Hill strengthens ACRES Land Trust’s growing preserves

Acres-21In support of ACRES Land Trust’s success toward doubling its pace of land acquisition, the membership-based nonprofit has hired Evan Hill to fill a new position as Land Management Specialist. Hill, a Purdue University Wildlife graduate, strengthens ACRES’ promise to protect land for future generations by caring for its growing acreage of land.


“I help preserve land by ensuring its overall health,” said Hill, a Noble County native. Hill’s work is motivated by “meeting land donors on their properties, seeing how much joy they get out of being there, knowing it’s protected, in good hands.”

As part of ACRES’ land management team, Hill will mark boundaries, fight invasive species, maintain more than 70 miles of trails and manage summer land management interns and contractors.

ACRES’ newly created position is a result of recent phenomenal growth, largely attributed to the organization’s use of Indiana’s Bicentennial Nature Trust. The $30 million matching fund, launched in 2012, offered groups like ACRES up to half the appraised value of property to preserve land in celebration of Indiana’s Bicentennial.

“Our success in acquiring land requires that we increase our management efforts,” said Jason Kissel, executive director of the member-based nonprofit. “Protecting land forever starts on the day we acquire a property, and it is each day after when the promise for future generations is realized.”

Hill brings both education and experience to ACRES. While an undergraduate at Purdue, he spent two summers as an ACRES land management intern in a program funded by the Olive B. Cole Foundation to aid in talent retention in northeast Indiana.

Upon graduation, Hill left the area to serve the Division of Wildlife in Colorado, as a short-term habitat technician. He returned to Indiana and has performed contractual land management work for ACRES, supervising the summer land management program.

“Evan helps ensure the properties are protected, well maintained, and increasing in overall health,” said Kissel. “Forever is not just the future; Evan helps ACRES ensure protection of its properties for future generations – daily.”

Together with its members, ACRES preserves 5,985 acres of significant natural area in northeast Indiana, northwest Ohio and southern Michigan for future generations. Explore more than 70 miles of trails for hiking, photography, birding, wellness, family and school visits, and adventure. Connect with ACRES Land Trust at 260-637-2273, or on Facebook at ACRES.LT.

Getting the Next Generation Involved

Earth Charter Indiana is looking for Fort Wayne community members, especially youths ages 8-18, who are interested in working with us later this year on youth-led local initiatives for a healthier climate and environment. Their goal is to achieve city-wide action to cut fossil fuel emissions, reduce waste, and preserve natural resources by capturing the voices of concerned youths and supporting the missions of existing environmental organizations. The sustainability initiatives they pursue will be inspired by the work of youth in Oregon and the Indianapolis area, who have appealed to their city councils and governments about making sustainability a part of the city code, but they will also be uniquely designed for the needs of the Fort Wayne community and the interests of the youth who lead those efforts. The local contact for that effort is Tessa Horan, intern for Earth Charter Indiana. For more information, please reach out to her at Thanks.

River Camp 2016: Extended Deadline!

The deadline for this year’s River Camp has been extended from June 11th to June 20th!

Register your children today by calling 427-6000 or online at

River Camp is made possible by multiple partnerships between the Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department and local organizations, all focused on helping kids 8-12 years of age gain a better understanding on our local waterways.

Camp will be held at Shoaff Park Riverlodge July 5th – 8th from 9 am to 3 pm. For more information and a full list of partners, please click this link to the flyer: River Camp flyer.