Franklin Land Trust - Conserving Farms, Fields & Forests Since 1987 Donate

Save North Pond

Join the fight to save the pristine shores of North Pond in Southwick! We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to protect the only remaining undeveloped land on North Pond.

GOOD NEWS! We are almost there! 

To date, we have raised $3.2 million dollars for North Pond!

To help us complete the project, the Amelia Peabody Charitable Fund has offered us a $200,000 CHALLENGE GRANT.
The Fund will match your donations dollar for dollar, if we can raise $200,000 from the community before December 15, 2017
.

In addition, the Westfield River Watershed Association has donated a $10,000 Challenge Gift to inspire donors to make a gift NOW towards this amazing project.

These challenges mean that you have the opportunity to DOUBLE YOUR IMPACT by making a gift to Save North Pond today!

We are so close – WE CAN’T GIVE UP NOW!

We need to protect the last undeveloped shoreline on North Pond!
Only YOU can stop dozens of new houses and waterfront docks from being built on this land. 

Your help today means that the woodlands and beachfront will be conserved and allowed to remain wild and open for future generations.

YOU CAN MAKE THAT HAPPEN!

There are many environmental reasons to conserve this land as well.

The land is located over an aquifer that filters clean drinking water to the thousands of residents in Southwick, Westfield and West Springfield. Ground wells for all three communities are located within this aquifer.

Without your help, this parcel of land will be developed into dozens of homes, forever altering the character of North Pond, disrupting sensitive habitats, and threatening water quality.

Your help protects the drinking water for thousands of people and preserves a future well site that will ensure clean water for future generations!

The land is also directly adjacent to the 267 acre Southwick Wildlife Management Area, and an additional 251 acres of conserved grasslands in Connecticut, which makes this area one of the largest areas of permanently protected grasslands in New England. Several threatened species of birds rely on these grasslands, such as the kestrel, woodcock, bobolink, grasshopper sparrow, vesper sparrow, and the upland sand piper.

Your help expands the grasslands, providing important habitat for threatened bird species!

In addition, there is a pitch pine forest on the North Pond land, which is a rare ecosystem in Massachusetts. Having the forested land, the grassland, the wetland and the water habitat all together and unbroken by development, allows for biodiversity and for a more resilient habitat for a changing climate.

Your help ensures that the wildlife on North Pond have the best chance of survival in the face of climate change!

When conserved, all of the land will be open to the public. The western portion of the land will be owned by the Town of Southwick and the eastern portion of the land will be owned by the Massachusetts Department of Fish and Game.

Your help means that the land will once again be open for hiking, fishing, picnicking and swimming. PLEASE HELP!

Please donate using the form below.

Or mail your check to:

Save North Pond
c/o Franklin Land Trust
P.O. Box 450
Shelburne Falls, MA 01370


 

Why Conserve It?

  • The character of North Pond will forever be changed if this land is turned into house lots. Instead of beautiful woods, there would be more houses, docks, and boats crowding this small pond.
  • The property is over an aquifer that provides clean drinking water to thousands of people. Developing it will threaten nearby wells and North Pond with polluted runoff.
  • The property provides important habitat to birds, animals, and plants. It is adjacent to 300 acres of conserved land, providing a home to threatened species like the Grasshopper Sparrow, Vesper Sparrow, and the Upland Sand Piper.
  • The western portion of the land will be owned by the town of Southwick and provide many opportunities for hiking, swimming, and fishing. The eastern half will be owned by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and be managed for grassland bird habitat.

A Unique Opportunity

The North Pond property includes the only remaining undeveloped frontage on North Pond, and is a popular place for boaters and fisherman. The parcel contains 2,900 feet of pristine shoreline. Development of this land would forever change the character of North Pond.

With nearly 150 acres of land, this parcel will provide many miles of hiking and biking trails, as well as prime hunting and fishing opportunities.

The land is also a key link in a corridor of conserved lands, providing important habitat for wildlife. This property would add to the 267-acre Southwick Wildlife Management Area, and an additional 251 acres of conserved grasslands in Connecticut which makes this area one of the largest areas of permanently protected grasslands in the region. Several threatened species of birds rely on these grasslands, such as the kestrel, woodcock, bobolink, grasshopper sparrow, vesper sparrow, and the upland sand piper. The pitch pine forest on the North Pond land is a rare ecosystem in Massachusetts, and has been identified by the Nature Conservancy as being resilient habitat for a changing climate.

Conserving this land will provide permanent public access to the shoreline for swimming and fishing, with many miles of trails for people to enjoy.

“Together we can save this land and preserve the beautiful character of North Pond for everyone to enjoy.” John Whalley

Preliminary buildout plan if we DON'T Save North Pond

How Can I Help?

  • We need to work together to reach our total goal of $5 million to purchase the land from the current owner. Though most of these funds will come from grants, we need your help to raise $1 million locally. Every dollar will help make a difference! You can give online at franklinlandtrust.org or at the Save North Pond office at 491 College Highway (next to the Dunkin Donuts - Open Tuesday - Thursday, 12pm-2pm) Email questions:savenorthpond@franklinlandtrust.org
  • Spread the word.We need everyone’s help! Share this website and ask your friends and neighbors to get involved.
  • Become a Business Sponsor.
  • Thank our current Business Sponsors by visiting their businesses!
  • Learn more about the Congamond Lakes at www.congamond.org
  • Watch video history of the Congamond Lakes
  • Visit our Facebook page facebook.com/savenorthpond for up-to-date information
  • Read our FAQ's and ask questions

 

Please donate today!!

You may make your tax-deductible donation online, in person at our campaign office (at 491 College Highway next to the Dunkin Donuts) or by mail.
Make checks payable to the Franklin Land Trust*, P.O Box 450, Shelburne Falls, MA 01370.  Please note "Save North Pond" in the memo line.


*What is the Franklin Land Trust and why are we involved? Franklin Land Trust (FLT) is a 501(c)3, non-profit land conservation organization that has been working with landowners and communities for the past 30 years to permanently conserve significant natural, cultural, and working lands. FLT has expertise and many years of experience in complicated real estate transactions. We often serve as matchmakers and intermediaries between landowners, funders, and state agencies. Since the organization was founded in 1987, we have conserved over 30,000 acres of land. Though we focus primarily on Franklin county, we respond to requests for help throughout western Massachusetts.

For the North Pond project, FLT is coordinating the fundraising effort to purchase the 144 acres for $5 million. Once we reach our goal, the land will be permanently conserved and open to the public for hiking, swimming, fishing, and hunting.

Contact us by mail: Franklin Land Trust, 5 Mechanic Street, P.O Box 450, Shelburne Falls, MA 01370 Or telephone: 413-625-9151 

What happens to my donations?

Contributions to this project will be a tax-deductible charitable gift. Donations will be held in a separate account for the sole purpose of purchasing and protecting this land.

What happens to my donation if the project falls through?

If your donation is under $250

If you donate $250 or under, you will receive a charitable donation letter from the Franklin Land Trust after we process your gift. However, donations under $250 will not be refundable. If we don’t reach our goal or the project falls through, funds will remain in a fund designated for future land preservation projects in Southwick.

If your donation is over $250

If your donation is over $250, you can choose whether you would like it to be refundable minus a 3% bookkeeping fee if the project fails. If you would like your donation to be refundable, we can not issue a charitable donation letter until the project is complete, hopefully in June 2017.

If you donate over $250, you must choose one of the following options:

  • Please keep my donation and use it for the North Pond conservation project or future land preservation projects in Southwick, and issue me a charitable donation letter now.
  • Please hold my donation, issue me a refund (minus a 3% bookkeeping fee) if the project falls through, and issue me a charitable donation letter when the project closes.

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