Photo: Bill Hecht

Finger Lakes Forever Capital Campaign

Welcome to “Finger Lakes Forever,” the capital campaign to complete the top conservation projects that the Finger Lakes Land Trust is pursuing now… to protect forever! 

Among our many efforts across the region, the projects on this page are the current focus of fundraising, along with building our Stewardship Fund so that we can fulfill the promise of permanent protection. With your gift today, you can help us reach our $20 million goal and protect more land and water permanently:

Donate Online >

Please type FOREVER in the comments field on the donation form

You can also call (607) 275-9487 or email forever@fllt.org

VIDEOS

“FINGER LAKES FOREVER”

Please watch the campaign movie to get inspired! You will hear Executive Director Andy Zepp and fellow conservationists from across the region discuss themes central to the campaign, including: water quality and toxic algae, climate change, trails and public access, farmlands and rural character, and tourism and local economies.

“VOICES IN FAVOR OF FOREVER”

Should we protect the most inspiring and sensitive places in the Finger Lakes region… for another year? Another generation? Another century?  Watch as 10 people share their voices in favor of conserving land and water FOREVER.

CAMPAIGN INTERVIEWS

Also see our videos page for short movies of individual members who spoke at the Spring 2022 campaign event, including: Lynden Archer, Patience Brewster, Mark Chao, Betsy Darlington, Pam Helming, Anna Kelles, David Muir, Niraj Lama, Rebecca Schneider, Henry Scholl, and Wendell Weeks. Thank you, speakers!

PROJECTS

 

Photo: Bill Hecht

Bell Station

Together we raised the $500,000 needed to complete the purchase of Bell Station this spring! Thanks to your help, we will acquire this spectacular 470-acre property in Lansing that features wooded hillsides, extensive fields, and several small streams with cascading waterfalls. The effort will forever conserve over 3,400 feet of pristine Cayuga Lake shoreline and create a public recreation area, while an upland portion will be considered for solar energy production. The project is the result of a collaboration between the Finger Lakes Land Trust, Governor Kathy Hochul, DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos, NYSEG President Carl Taylor, Senator Pamela Helming, Assemblymember Anna Kelles, and other public officials and community members who were committed to seeing the property conserved.

See the story with maps and photos >

Watch the Bell Station video >

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Photo: Jeff Katris

Cayuga Cliffs

The Finger Lakes Land Trust is protecting 243 acres of meadows, woodlands, gorges, and waterfalls in the Cayuga Lake watershed just north of Ithaca. Approximately 200 acres will be acquired and opened as a new nature preserve – free and open to everyone – while the remaining acreage will be secured with a conservation easement. This project will conserve over 4,000 feet of shoreline directly across from Taughannock Falls State Park. The upland portions of the site stabilize soils, prevent erosion and nutrient loading into the lake, and provide wildlife habitat for myriad species. The National Audubon Society designates the shoreline as an Important Bird Area, and the property contains substantial portions of two county-designated Unique Natural Areas.

See the story with maps and photos >

Watch the Cayuga Cliffs video >

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Photo: Bill Hecht

Canandaigua Vista

The Finger Lakes Land Trust recently conserved over 90 acres and a tributary to the lake with plans to create a new preserve – open to the public – only minutes from downtown Canandaigua. Now, we are restoring wildlife habitat on the property, including meadows for grassland birds and other species. The Land Trust will also work with partners and volunteers to create safe public access and a trail system that will feature scenic views of Canandaigua Lake. When these improvements are complete, the beautiful property will be open for low-impact recreation such as hiking, wildlife watching, and cross-country skiing.

See the story with maps and photos >

Watch the Canandaigua Vista video >

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Photo: Matt Champlin

Skaneateles Lake – Staghorn Cliffs

The Land Trust recently purchased 90 acres with 900 feet of shoreline along the Staghorn Cliffs.  The new property is immediately adjacent to the Land Trust’s Cora Kampfe Dickinson Conservation Area and together the two properties protect 2,200 feet of contiguous shoreline.  Wetland restoration efforts are underway that will enhance habitat and reduce runoff to the lake.

See the new Staghorn Cliffs story >

Also see the Staghorn Cliffs on Go Finger Lakes >

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Photo: Tom Reimers

Skaneateles Lake – Critical Conservation Link

The Land Trust purchased four contiguous parcels totaling 75 acres near the south end of Skaneateles Lake off Vincent Hill and Spafford Landing roads. These hillside parcels feature approximately 71 acres of soils classified as severely erodible as well as 1,800 feet of stream frontage. This critical conservation project will connect our Hinchcliff Family Preserve to our High Vista Nature Preserve, provide new opportunities for outdoor recreation, create habitat connectivity, and help protect water quality.

See the story with maps and photos >

Watch the Skaneteles Highlands video >

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Photo: Bill Hecht

Otisco Lakeshore

Through an innovative partnership with Onondaga County and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, the Finger Lakes Land Trust saved 2,300 feet of shoreline at the southern end of Otisco Lake. Now, the partnership is planning active restoration efforts, including planting over 600 native trees and shrubs that will filter runoff into the lake. When restoration is complete, the shoreline property will be open for public recreation including hiking, wildlife watching, and fishing. Onondaga County will own and manage the site as a public conservation area, and the Land Trust will hold and monitor a conservation easement.

See the story with maps and photos >

Watch the Otisco Lakeshore Conservation Project video >

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Photo: Bill Hecht

Owasco Lakeshore

The Land Trust just opened a new nature preserve featuring 1,100 feet of pristine shoreline as well as upland forests and meadows with sweeping views of Owasco Lake. The site, which features a mile-long trail, is the third location with publicly accessible shoreline on the lake.

See the Owasco Lakeshore Protection Project with maps and photos >

Watch the Owasco Lakeshore video >

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Photo: Stefanie Delaney

Chemung River Corridor

The Land Trust has been working to acquire key parcels along the Chemung River between Elmira and Corning that will secure outstanding wildlife habitat, expand opportunities for outdoor recreation, and maintain water quality.  Recent successes include protecting 200 acres in Big Flats and more that 100 acres of the Palisades.

See the Big Flats story >

See the Palisades story >

See our Steege Hill Nature Preserve >

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Photo: Scott Levine

Summerland Farm Preserve & Emerald Necklace

The Land Trust is opening a new nature preserve spanning approximately 140 acres in the Emerald Necklace.  The property hosts mature hardwood forests, a stretch of the Finger Lakes Trail, and scenic hilltop meadows with 30-mile views.

See the Summerland Farm Preserve >

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Photo: Andy Zepp

Keuka Lake Watershed

The Land Trust recently protected a rugged gorge with wooded uplands in the Keuka Lake watershed and opened it as our Botsford Nature Preserve. The project secures one of the region’s most pristine natural areas and helps to maintain Keuka Lake’s water quality. The Land Trust is pursuing the protection of additional lands nearby.

See the Big Gully story >

 

Also See

Photo: Matt Champlin

WATER QUALITY HUB

Please explore our Water Quality Hub.  The 11 Finger Lakes are the lifeblood of our region.  They provide drinking water for one million residents while attracting tourists from around the world.  The lakes have long been known for clean waters, but nutrient-laden runoff – exacerbated by a warming climate – has resulted in declining water quality.  The Finger Lakes Land Trust protects water quality by permanently conserving thousands of acres and cooperating with partners to restore natural systems that safeguard our watersheds.  See our 5-Point Water Quality Initiative and our Regional Conservation Agenda.

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Photo: Jeff Katris

Toxic Algae Site

Please see our special web pages at toxicalgae.org – an educational resource created by the Finger Lakes Land Trust to inform our communities about an intensifying menace to water quality, public health, tourism, and local economies across the region.  In recent years, all 11 Finger Lakes have been struck by outbreaks of cyanobacteria, commonly called toxic algae or harmful algal blooms (HABs).  We share toxic algae facts, resources, and actions to take.  We also report on how FLLT is working to secure our waters by collaborating with our partners.

ACT NOW

Give Online >

Please type FOREVER in the comments field on the donation form

You can also call (607) 275-9487 or email forever@fllt.org