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Preserving Southwest Florida’s ‘paradise’

By Staff | Sep 9, 2015

Lee County has an abundance of preservation and conservation properties.

Funded and maintained primarily through the voter-approved 20/20 program, the native lands held for future generations – scrub, prairie, pine flatwoods, wetlands – offer residents and visitors a look at the ecosystems that make southwest Florida unique.

This month, Lee County Parks & Recreation will take part in a national endeavor designed to call attention to these special parklands and so is seeking volunteers to participate in National Public Lands Day programs to be held Saturday, Sept. 26.

Lee County Conservation 20/20 Lands and County Preserves will be among the more than 2,000 public sites nationwide participating in this effort, a prepared statement from the county department states.

Those properties include the Caloosahatchee Creeks Preserve East at 10130 Bayshore Road, North Fort Myers; the Matanzas Pass Preserve at 199 Bay Road, Fort Myers Beach; and the Wild Turkey Strand Preserve at 11901 Rod & Gun Club Road, Fort Myers.

“Volunteers will be placed in groups for activities such as collecting invasive plants, maintaining trails, removing trash and helping with planting,” according to Lee County Parks & Recreation officials.

The goal of National Public Lands Day “is to improve public lands for outdoor recreation, with volunteers assisting in hands-on work.”

The program began in 1994 with three sites . It now includes every state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico.

County officials are asking volunteers to pre-register, if possible.

That can be done by calling Vicki Little at 239-533-7424 or emailing her at vlittle@leegov.com.

If working in the great outdoors isn’t reward enough, the first 50 volunteers will get a T-shirt and all volunteers will get community pool passes.

If you have some time, it’s a good program in which to take part.

– Reporter editorial