Recently, however, hikers along the main paved Upstream Sucker Creek Trail may have noticed a new sign that has been put up, touting “A Treasure of Great Sucker Creek Gifts for All”.
Sponsored by Kay N. Larson, the sign is a companion to the one that was installed in memory of her husband, C. Leroy Larson, a few years ago. This panel, titled “Life on the Edge”, was added after her husband passed away in 2012.
This sign, “Life on the Edge”, was donated to Upstream Sucker Creek by the C. Leroy Larson family after the death of a local nature lover in 2012. (Vicki Gerdes / Tribune)
“My husband was a huge lover of nature,” Larson explained on a recent visit to Greater Sucker Creek, when she and her children, Brooks Larson and Alexa Larson-Thorisch, premiered to see the new sign. time.
“He was a great bird watcher, and he could name all the different kinds of trees as well,” Brooks Larson added.
Greater Sucker Creek Founder Sally Hausken, who was also present for the unveiling of the sign, said the underlying intention was to draw attention to the need for biodiversity, clean water and carbon sequestration in the fight against the adverse effects of climate change.
One section, titled “Gifts to Planet Earth,” states that for its size, Greater Sucker Creek is, arguably, “one of the most far-sighted landscape parks in the United States,” with the three preventative measures mentioned above. above used in its borders.
Let’s take a closer look at the recently added 3 x 4 foot sign to the main trailhead at Upstream Sucker Creek in Detroit Lakes. The sign, created by Brushmarks, was donated by local resident Kay N. Larson as an accompaniment to a sign that was installed there in memory of her husband, C. Leroy Larson, after his death in 2012. ( Photo submitted)
Spanning just 117 acres – encompassing both the original Sucker Creek Preserve and upstream from Sucker Creek – the reserve offers many gifts, including health, exercise, recreation, peace, spirituality and education.
Other parts of the sign point to the need to “embrace a new normal” to tackle climate change, and one part, contributed by Donna Dustin, asks the question, “Can one person make a difference?
In it, Dustin explains how Hausken “took action” when a large piece of land along Sucker Creek was set aside for development.
“Sally brought together various entities, including the City of Detroit Lakes, the MNR, the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Trust for Public Land and the landowner, to apply for and receive an MNR grant for natural and scenic areas,” said writes Dustin. . This grant paid half the cost of purchasing the 61-acre parcel of land (for the original Sucker Creek Preserve). She then led a fundraising campaign to raise the remaining $ 92,000 needed to purchase field.
This map shows the layout of Greater Sucker Creek, a 117-acre nature preserve owned and maintained by the City of Detroit Lakes. The reserve includes the original 61-acre Sucker Creek Preserve, as well as the adjacent Sucker Creek upstream. (Image courtesy of the City of Detroit Lakes)
Rather than relax once the park was acquired, Sally remained active in shaping the park. In 2004, she applied for an MNR recreation grant on behalf of the city and received $ 60,000 in matching funds.oward restoration of the reserve She also added 3 acres of land across Sucker Creek to the park. She didn’t do all of this alone, but thanks to Sally’s skill in bringing others together and working them towards a common goal, Sucker Creek Preserve will always be a place for young and old to enjoy and learn. “
And Hausken is not finished yet. The longtime local resident says Greater Sucker Creek is seeking a state grant to restore 5.6 acres of the park to its original prairie.
Even if they ultimately don’t get the grant, Hausken said, “We’ll find a way to do it.”