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Mississippi Valley Conservancy acquires 1,600 acres in Crawford County, plans Earth Day Clean Up in La Crosse

The non-profit land trust is celebrating 25 years of protecting land with a huge acquisition, thanks to their largest donation ever.

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(UPDATE: THE 4/22/22 CLEAN UP HAS BEEN POSTPONED DUE TO WEATHER)

The Mississippi Valley Conservancy is celebrating their 25th Anniversary this year protecting land in the La Crosse and surrounding areas. They’re a non-profit land trust permanently protecting land in the Wisconsin counties of Buffalo, Crawford, Grant, Jackson, La Crosse, Monroe, Richland, Trempealeau, and Vernon. Some land is private and some is public.

Last week, MVC celebrated a new acquisition of 1,600 acres of public land on the lower Kickapoo River in Crawford County. Sarah Bratnober, Communications Director for Mississippi Valley Conservancy, told Z93 this new land is part farmland and part wild.

The Department of Natural Resources, the Nature Conservancy of Wisconsin, and Mississippi Valley Conservancy have had their eyes on this amazing land for some time. “We’ve literally been talking about it and looking at it for decades, but the big challenge was always how would we pay for that,” Bratnober explained.

An anonymous supporter, passionate about land and water conservation in this part of Wisconsin, donated $3 million to cover the majority of the acquisition. The anonymous gift is the largest MVC has ever received.

Bratnober added the new land is “connected to other protected lands. That is the best thing for the environment, and for wildlife, is to have these corridors of protected land and so we have many acres protected up and down the Kickapoo River and this is the last missing link that connects a whole lot of beautiful wild lands.”

Find more info on the Plum Creek Conservation Area, their latest acquisition, here.

Today, on Earth Day, MVC is seeking help to pick up trash and clear invasive brush at the La Crosse River Conservancy along S Kinney Coulee Road in Onalaska. Volunteers are asked to meet in front of the preserve kiosk and take a very short walk to the work area, which is located in between Stoney Creek Hotel and Kwik Trip #350. Tonight’s clean up is scheduled from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m..

Bratnober said the La Crosse River Conservancy is a beautiful area with great trails but since it’s right next to a gas station and a shopping mall, one area tends to collect a lot of litter. “There’s been some junk that collects and periodically we just get out and clean it up.”

Learn more about the Earth Day Clean Up here.

Feature image of Plum Creek Conservation Area by: Samuel Li

Tracy has worked at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 2004. She is half of the Z93 Morning Buzz with Brittany and Ballzer and coordinates Z93's charity, Zcare. She writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse and announces for the Mississippi Valley Mayhem Roller Derby team.

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