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Grant from OSI Enables Creation of Vermont’s Newest Community Forest

Photo Credit: Tom Kidder

Dec. 12, 2018 (Newbury, VT) – Iconic forestland in northern Vermont has been permanently conserved as a community forest, thanks to a grant from the Open Space Institute (OSI) to Vermont Land Trust. The project conserves habitat, while providing forest-based recreational and economic opportunities for this community about 40 miles east of Montpelier, Vermont. 

The new, 636-acre “Tucker Mountain Town Forest” includes Newbury’s highest-elevation point. Featuring panoramic views, abundant wildflowers, productive forests, and excellent nesting habitat for birds, the land is also a favorite recreational area for hikers, cross-country skiers, snowmobilers, mountain bikers, and others.

The Tucker Mountain Town Forest was supported though OSI’s Community Forest Fund, which enables the creation and expansion of community forests in Northern New England. In the Community Forest model, local citizens participate in the planning and management of forests, ensuring that everyone benefits from the land’s many economic, social, and ecological values.

Photo Credit: Tom Kidder

“OSI’s Community Forest Fund invested in the protection of Tucker Mountain because the project creates an enduring and vibrant community asset,” said Jennifer Melville, OSI’s vice president for conservation grants. “We congratulate Newbury and the Vermont Land Trust, whose partnership will benefit so many local residents, today and into the future.”

Tucker Mountain Town Forest includes the 1,742-foot summit of Woodchuck Mountain and most of Tucker Mountain, 1,690 feet in elevation.

In addition to OSI and the Town of Newbury, the project was funded with competitive grants from the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board, the Upper Connecticut River Mitigation and Enhancement Fund of the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, the Vermont Land Trust Forest Fund, Davis Conservation Foundation, and Fields Pond Foundation.

Beyond these organizations, more than 115 donors from the Upper Valley and beyond provided nearly $100,000 in contributions to complete the purchase and endow a fund dedicated to stewardship. 

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