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Dane project closer to completion

December 30, 2009
CENTER HARBOR — The purchase of the Dane Forest property is scheduled for closing with around 96 percent of the funds raised.

The property known as the Dane Forest, a 245-acre parcel located near Center Harbor Neck, Anthon, High Haith, and Bean Roads, has been earmarked as a key wildlife habitat by several conservation groups.

The Lakes Region Conservation Trust and the Squam Lakes Conservation Society have collaborated and received support from the town of Center Harbor to purchase the parcel from the Dane Family.

Money is now being raised to cover the purchase of the property, surveying costs, trailhead parking, trail management, and other expenses resulting in a total campaign goal of $830,000.

The Center Harbor Conservation Commission voted in favor of contributing $200,000 in conservation funds toward the purchase.

A Dec. 18 deadline was set for the land buyers to decide if the purchase would go through with the purchase and set a closing date.

Don Berry, president of the Lakes Region Conservation Trust, said all parties did agree to purchase the land. A closing date has been set for early March.

Berry said 96 percent of the funds needed have been raised with around $20,000 more left to be raised.

"There's really been just continuing good support," Berry said. "I think we all feel great that we're down to $20,000."

Around 150 families have contributed to the fundraising efforts.

"It's a nice real large number of people who have wanted to support the effort," Berry said.

The last event for the project was a dinner at The North End a few weeks after the last site walk of the property in November.

No other events have been scheduled for the near future, though Berry said an event might be scheduled for skiing or snowshoeing.

"One of the things people have been looking for too is opportunities for using the property in winter," Berry said.

The committee will be meeting in January and property use may be a topic of discussion.

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