Claytor Nature Study Center, Bedford County

For all those 3- to 5-year-old adventurers with cabin fever, the Claytor Nature Study Center has a cure: a four-day “Animals in Winter” hike series that will get them exploring the forest throughout the month of February, searching for traces of wildlife and learning about animals’ winter survival strategies. The center, nestled at the foot […]

VOF protected 15,928 acres of open space in 2018

The Virginia Outdoors Foundation (VOF) recorded 70 open-space easements in 41 counties and cities in 2018. The 15,928 acres of newly protected land includes VOF’s first easements in the cities of Alexandria and Richmond. Ten of the projects require permanent public access to the land. These projects received about $1.3 million in funding from the […]

The Clifton Institute, Fauquier County

A ring of children crowd around a kneeling camp counselor, who holds a dragonfly just inches from their faces. “How can you tell this guy is a predator?” the counselor asks. “Big eyes!” one child volunteers. “Spiky legs to hold prey!” another says. This is a typical scene at the Clifton Institute, an environmental education […]

Rockingham farmers help protect headwaters of “showcase” Smith Creek watershed

Bartholomew and Christina Johnson of Rockingham have made a significant contribution to water quality protection in the Smith Creek Watershed by donating an open-space easement on their farm to VOF. The 48 acres near Keezletown contain a large portion of the headwaters of Smith Creek. The easement requires existing stream buffers to be permanently maintained […]

VOF’s first easement in Alexandria ensures public access to historic property

The Murray-Dick-Fawcett House in Old Town Alexandria is now permanently protected for the public by historic preservation and open-space easements held by the Virginia Board of Historic Resources and the Virginia Outdoors Foundation (VOF). The easements were acquired thanks to $1.25 million in grants from the Virginia Land Conservation Foundation and VOF’s Preservation Trust Fund. […]

VOF partners with Shenandoah nonprofit to conserve Valley’s Germanic heritage

Virginia’s Germanic heritage story starts with a title dispute. Anxious to settle the Shenandoah Valley, the Colonial Government at Williamsburg began selling off pieces of land west of the Blue Ridge in the 1730s. However, there was a catch: this land had already been claimed from across the Atlantic by the British Lord Thomas Fairfax. He would file suit, but lost his […]

VOF allocates $548,000 for public access projects

The Virginia Outdoors Foundation is directing $548,000 from its Open-Space Lands Preservation Trust Fund (PTF) to facilitate the acquisition of four open-space easements that will increase public access to natural areas. The projects are located in the cities of Richmond and Suffolk and the counties of Gloucester and Culpeper. Open-space easements are voluntary agreements between […]