Two local conservation organizations have decided to do something unusual—cohost an online fundraiser and share the proceeds. Little River Wetlands Project and LC Nature Park, both located on the southwest side of Fort Wayne, were planning in-person fundraisers, but the COVID-19 pandemic made those plans unworkable.

“The missions of our two organizations complement each other,” said Little River Wetlands Project Executive Director Amy Silva. “We wanted to support LC Nature Park, which is just getting started, while bringing in some much-needed donations for our own work. Like many other nonprofits, our major fundraising events had to be cancelled. So we pivoted, deciding to try a creative new approach with our online adventure store. It will be our only fundraiser this year.”

The “Choose Your Adventure” online store features outdoor experiences hosted by experienced guides, including kayak birdwatching, a riverboat ride, a geology-based hike of the Little River Valley at LC Nature Park, and a family tour of the Black Pine Animal Sanctuary in Albion. In addition, browsers can shop for unique artwork, nature-focused books and merchandise.

The online store is located at chooseyourownadventure.online, and it opened on September 15. Unlike an auction fundraiser, shoppers will be able to purchase items outright, with no waiting. All proceeds will be shared between the two nonprofit organizations. The online market will continue to be open through December 31, 2020, or while adventures last!

“As a relatively new nonprofit, we’re just starting to develop our fundraising strategy,” said George Manning, LC Nature Park Director. “We are looking forward to partnering with LRWP on this online fundraiser.”

A nonprofit land trust, Little River Wetlands Project restores and protects wetlands in the watershed of the Little River, a tributary of the Wabash River. LRWP’s project area encompasses more than 140,000 acres in Allen and Huntington Counties, Indiana. The organization manages several preserves, including Eagle Marsh, the ‘largest inland urban wetland restoration in the U.S.’, reaching over 12,000+ individuals of all abilities and needs with our accessible trails, and wetland education programming.

LC Nature Park has a three-fold mission of experience, education, and conservation. By restoring and highlighting Indiana’s natural beauty, it strives to enable visitors to experience the wonders of our native flora and fauna. With majestic bison and elk, and nearly 200 acres of grassland, wetland, and a forested sand dune, as well as a dedicated and highly motivated staff, LC Nature Park brings nature and students of all ages together.

The Waynedale News Staff
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