Portage Park District permanently conserves 89 acres in Portage County

10 foot falls in Hiram

Portage Park District has conserved over 89 acres in Kent and Streetsboro, bringing the park district’s total conserved acreage to over 2,100. The newly conserved land consists of four unique properties adjacent to existing park properties and includes high-quality wetlands, forests and open space. Creating larger tracts of contiguous natural areas provides increased quality of wildlife habitat and improved water quality protection.

As with many park and conservation projects, it takes the efforts of Portage Park District, partners and funders to bring a project to life. In many instances, these projects are facilitated by landowners who are willing to sell their property below market value (bargain sale).

Trail Lake Addition/Tinker’s Creek Greenway Phase II

The 60-acre Kreierhoff property is located to the northeast of the Portage Parks’ Trail Lake Park property (Tinker’s Creek Greenway Phase I acquired in 2018) and consists of mostly open agricultural land with some forest. Sitting adjacent to Herrick Fen State Nature Preserve, the Kreierhoff parcel provides an opportunity for future trail connection and is a vital buffer to both Herrick Fen and Trail Lake Park. The land will be restored to natural meadow and forest habitat.

$582,380 in grant funding was provided by the Clean Ohio Greenspace Fund and partially matched with an in-kind donation of value from the Kreierhoff family (Will, Adam, and Trevor) through bargain sale. 

“After years of farming and a career in the heavy construction industry, it feels good to leave something for our community as a whole; A place that will help protect our water, plants, and animals who live there. Selling to the park was a much-needed life goal that I feel lucky to have achieved.” Trevor Kreierhoff.

“I’ve loved that farm my whole life. It was like living at Disneyland to grow up there. I never wanted to sell. It was God’s grace that if it had to be sold it went to the park system where it will be protected forevermore – the trees and the land. Now everyone has the chance to appreciate what is there like we did.” William H. Kreierhoff

Another property acquired in the Tinkers Creek Greenway Phase II plan is the 16.5-acre Brotje wetland property on Ravenna Road in Franklin Township, south of Trail Lake Park. Thanks to $60,680 from the Clean Ohio Greenspace Fund, along with Brad and Sandy Brotje’s generous bargain sale, the Portage Park District can protect the water quality of Tinkers Creek and provide great habitat for waterfowl.    

Towner’s Woods Addition

The 12.7-acre property adjacent to Towner’s Woods and the PORTAGE Hike and Bike Trail provides conserved habitat including high-quality wetlands and forest. In partnership with The West Creek Conservancy, the property was purchased from Bill and Margot Milcetich using Clean Ohio Greenspace funding with Portage Park District providing the local cash match. The Milcetich’s are conservation-minded and happy to protect this property with the Portage Parks. The potential use of this property includes a short trail and rest area for the PORTAGE Hike and Bike Trail.

Headwaters Trail

The 1-acre parcel, donated by the Elma Pochedly Family (Sandy Graham, Vicki Hollendoner, Patty Falls), borders the south side of the Headwaters Trail in Hiram, which is part of the statewide Buckeye Trail. This property is an excellent addition to the Headwaters Trail which includes the ‘10’-foot falls’ rock outcroppings and stream as well as a stone bench to enjoy the beauty of the area.

Portage Park District conserves important natural areas and creates parks and trails for public use and enjoyment.  For more information, visit www.portageparkdistrict.org or call (330) 297-7728. The Portage Park District’s mission is to conserve Portage County’s natural heritage and provide opportunities for its appreciation and enjoyment.

Map of Kreierhoff and Brotje parcels

Brotje and Kreierhoff parcels 

Map of Milcetich property addition

Milcetich parcel

Pochedly property

Kreierhoff property

Kreierhoff property

10 foot falls in Hiram

10' foot falls near Headwaters Trail in Hiram