Foundation

The Forest Preserve Friends Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation organized for charitable and educational purposes. The Foundation supports the facilities, programs, services, goals and mission of the Champaign County Forest Preserve District. In turn, it generates grant support and collaborative relationships with other agencies.

Your contributions to the Foundation support the projects and activities at the Champaign County Forest Preserve District. Whether helping to acquire land, maintain natural and recreational areas, provide educational experiences, or preserve the County's natural and cultural resources, your gift will touch the lives of generations to come.

 

Bridging the Generations

The Forest Preserve Friends Foundation is asking for your assistance to protect and preserve the Lake of the Woods Covered Bridge. This historic landmark of our community has served patrons at Lake of the Woods Forest Preserve for nearly sixty years and has not received any significant restoration in the last twenty-five years.  After all that time the bridge is in desperate need of a new roof.

The bridge was constructed in the early 1960s and is dedicated to Harold Moon, the former Superintendent of Lake of the Woods. It was designed by Dr. German Gurfinkel, a Professor Emeritus at the University of Illinois, to provide a safe way for visitors to cross the Sangamon River. To this day the Lake of the Woods Covered Bridge serves as a popular destination for visitors and as one of the most photographed locations in Champaign County.

The Lake of the Woods Covered Bridge offers a safe haven for the bat population at Lake of the Woods Forest Preserve. Lake of the Woods is home to six different bat species that help maintain a balanced native ecosystem and control the local insect population. With a new roof, the Covered Bridge will continue to serve our community and our local habitats for another sixty years.

The Forest Preserve Friends Foundation needs your help to raise $55,000 for a new roof. This new roof will be sustainable and more durable than the one installed sixty years ago, all while maintaining the historic look of the bridge. Your donations to support the Covered Bridge will ensure this historic icon of Champaign County will be with us for generations to come.

Donors who donate $500 or more to the restoration of the Lake of the Woods Covered Bridge will receive an 8x10 print from local artist Marla Beyer 

 

Donate Today!

 

KRT Charging Station

In an effort to increase the accessibility of the Kickapoo Rail Trail, the Forest Preserve Friends Foundation is seeking donations to install a solar powered wheelchair charging station between St. Joseph and Urbana. The Kickapoo Rail Trail has served as a valuable resource for those in wheelchairs during the pandemic. Access to free accessible outdoor recreation is an effective way of combating the stress of social isolation and gives people with mobility limitations a safe and enjoyable venue to connect with their community. The KRT receives significant usage for community members in wheelchairs. However, large sections of the KRT run through rural areas with no access to electricity for those in motorized wheelchairs. This leaves large sections of the KRT functionally inaccessible to a segment of the population.

Your donations, in support of a solar charging station for motorized wheelchairs, will increase the overall distance of usable trail for people with mobility limitations. The Forest Preserve Friends Foundation needs to raise $15,000 to help expand access to outdoor recreation for ALL members of our community. If you would like to support this project you may donate at ccfpr.org to the KRT Accessibility Fund.

Donate Today!

Estate Giving

Are you looking for ways to support the Champaign County Forest Preserve District along with its facilities, programs, goals, and missions during your lifetime or as a lasting legacy? Then consider the Forest Preserve Friends Foundation as a means of satisfying this lifetime charitable objective or as a legacy under your estate plan.

Lifetime gifts to the Forest Preserve Friends Foundation can be made in a variety of forms including cash, appreciated securities, and real estate. These types of gifts can provide you with financial benefit in the form of income tax deductions and reduction of capital gains tax all while benefiting the Champaign County Forest Preserve District.

Legacy gifts of cash, securities, and real estate can also be made to the Champaign County Forest Preserve Friends Foundation by naming the Foundation as a beneficiary under a Will or Trust. This allows you to continue your current lifestyle through the use of these assets during your lifetime together with the flexibility to change your plans as necessary due to life changes, all while ultimately benefiting the Champaign County Forest Preserve District after your death. Estate tax benefits may also be obtained by such legacy gifts.

 A lifetime and legacy gift might also include establishing a Charitable Remainder Trust.  Such a trust can provide regular payments for yourself, your spouse, or a loved one for life and benefit the Champaign County Forest Preserve Friends Foundation as the beneficiary of the Trust after death. Charitable Remainder Trusts can provide income tax deductions, can eliminate capital gains tax on lifetime gifts, and provide estate tax savings at death.

Other simple forms of assets and means to consider in leaving a legacy to the Forest Preserve Friends Foundation might include naming the Foundation as beneficiary of retirement plan assets, life insurance, bank accounts, or investment accounts. Naming the Foundation as direct beneficiary of retirement plan assets provides a way of transferring assets to the Foundation on a tax-free basis.

 If you are interested in discussing these ideas with us, please contact foundation@ccfpd.org or your personal legal or financial advisor.

Board Members

  • Will Timmons, Chairman
  • Joe Lamb, Vice President 
  • Meredith Mills, Treasurer
  • Bob Espeseth, Secretary
  • Rod Beyers
  • Peg Busch
  • Matt Hausman
  • Roger Laramee
  • Sarah Livesay
  • Dan Noel
  • Rachel Smith-Bolton
  • Jennifer Vallowe
  • Mary Ellen Wuellner
  • Lorrie Pearson, Executive Director CCFPD

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