Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Darke County Park District Opens Eidson Woods Preserve

Darke County Park District opened its newest park, Eidson Woods Preserve, on Saturday, April 16th. Despite the cold, windy and rainy day there was a great turnout for the ribbon cutting ceremony. The day began at 8am with a bird hike sponsored by the Darke County Birders Club. At 10am, the Darke County Parks’ Junior Naturalists worked to remove invasive plant species, pick up roadway trash and beautify this new park. At 1pm a ribbon cutting ceremony was held in memory of Sallie Eidson Cotes, whose hope it was to preserve this diverse piece of property for decades to come. In attendance at the grand opening was Honorable Judge Julie Monnin, Municipal Court Judge, Honorable Judge Jason Aslinger, Probate Court Judge, State Representative, Jim Buchy, Darke County Park Board Commissioner, Daniel C. Schipfer and family members of Sallie Eidson Cotes, David Cotes and daughter Cindie Lanham. Park District Director Roger M. Van Frank stated, “ This is truly another example of how the Darke County Community continues to lead in the preservation of lands important to the natural and cultural history of Darke County.”

Consisting of 55 acres of maturing woodland and 15 acres of intermediate succession savannah, Eidson Woods offers an excellent range of habitats and species of interest. There are several tree species with significant age, including several ancient American Sycamores and White Oaks. The forest floor is awash with native woodland wildflowers and woodland frogs can be heard in the spring. Kraut creek, a pristine tributary of state designated Scenic River Greenville Creek runs along the Western edge of the woods. Within the forest is a button-bush swamp, commonly associated with high quality wetlands. This is a truly unique park that provides a feast for the senses in all seasons and should be visited often. The park is easily accessible from Ohio Route 502 West and Palestine-Union City Road. Call the Nature Center for directions or more information on the newest addition at 937-548-0165.

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