On Wednesday, the Tennessee Parks & Greenways Foundation (TennGreen) and the non-profit corporation “Friends of Indian Lake Peninsula” (FOFILP) announced that they have formed an alliance to protect and conserve the only remaining open space on the Indian Lake Peninsula in Hendersonville, Tennessee.
The 38-acre, forested hill that FOFILP is attempting to purchase comprises the upper half of a historic 73-acre property that is known to many in the community as the “Batey Farm.” The City of Hendersonville purchased the lower, 35-acre section of the property on May 30th, and together, the two parcels eventually will become a 73-acre park. FOFILP has raised most of the $1 million purchase price for the hill and will close the deal on July 2, 2018 if the final funds can be raised.
Once FOFILP buys the property, TennGreen and FOFILP expect their alliance to result in a conservation easement eventually being placed on the hill to protect it from further development. The timing and scope of the easement will be worked out in the future. In the meantime, FOFILP will host community meetings with Hendersonville residents to gather ideas and apply for grants to make minimal improvements to turn the hill into a passive park. Ultimately, FOFILP will donate the hill to the City of Hendersonville.
“We are excited and proud to collaborate with the Friends of Indian Lake Peninsula,” said Steve Law, Executive Director of TennGreen. “We applaud their extraordinary commitment to conserve this community forest for the benefit of all Hendersonville residents.”
Ken Verble, Chairman of the Board of FOFILP, added, “We are excited to add TennGreen’s contribution to the work we have done and to the relationship we have built with the City of Hendersonville to leave a legacy for future generations. The support from this community and the speed that we have displayed in getting this far is unprecedented. We know that working with TennGreen will help us achieve our goals.”
FOFILP’s effort to buy the hill has become a movement and has captured the imagination of many people in Hendersonville as evidenced by the sheer size of the donor group: over 750 households have contributed so far with about half of those for $200 each or less. The movement has touched the hearts of many, from donors in 11 other states to local school-age and pre-school children doing chores to earn money to take to Capstar Bank in Hendersonville to make their donations in person.
FOFILP and TennGreen are asking for the continued support of the community as they work to reach their $1 million goal.