The community is invited to join Clark County Public Works, Parks and Lands at 5 p.m. on Oct. 19 to celebrate the opening of the new Gordy Jolma Family Natural Area. The new 118-acre natural area is adjacent to the Salmon-Morgan Creeks Natural Area and supports open space, regional water quality and salmon recovery goals. The property will also increase recreational opportunities in the area.
The Oct. 19 event will include a brief presentation, ribbon cutting, and interpretive nature walk. Attendees are reminded to dress for the weather. Parking is available at the former Cedars Golf Course clubhouse at 15001 Northeast 181st Street in Brush Prairie. The ceremony will take place across 181st Street along a paved path.
Gordy Jolma, the owner of the Cedars Golf Course, approached Parks and Lands in 2019 about selling the property. The property is identified as a high-value conservation area in the Natural Areas Acquisition Plan and the property acquisition was approved as part of the 2022-2027 Parks, Recreation and Open Space Plan. After gathering input from the community, the Clark County Council approved the purchase of the property on Aug. 16 using Legacy Lands and Clean Water Funds. The sale of the property was officially finalized this week. The final purchase includes 133.5 max acre feet of water rights along Salmon Creek, property along the Chelatchie Prairie Railroad, and naming rights for the Gordy Jolma family.
The Oct. 19 event marks the opening of the property to the public. Clark County park rules apply at natural areas, including hours of 7 a.m. to dusk (a half hour after sunset). Signage will be installed and mowing will keep trails visible. Visitors are asked to stay on trails and paved paths. Golf carts and motorized vehicles are not permitted.
The Legacy Lands program conserves open space, farmland and timber land. Since the property was purchased with Conservation Futures funding, the site will transition from a golf course to a greenway. A master planning process, for trails and other low-impact facilities, could occur in the next 20 years.
Interpreters will be provided at the Oct. 19 event upon request by emailing email@example.com or calling 564.397.1679.
To receive information about road and park projects, closures, opportunities for community input, and more, residents can follow Public Works on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and view information on Nextdoor.
Kaley McLachlan-Burton, Community Engagement and Inclusion manager, Public Works, firstname.lastname@example.org, 360.946.7584