County Executive Falk Announces Purchase of Land for Festge Park
July 22, 2003
Sharyn Wisniewski (608) 267-8823
Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk today announced that the County has negotiated the purchase of approximately 32 acres of land in the Town of Berry, together with .4 acres in the Town of Cross Plains, all owned by the Estate of Lillian R. Festge.
Together, these parcels complete the acquisition goals at Festge County Park along the eastern and southern boundaries.
“This purchase represents a long-standing partnership between the Festge Family and Dane County,” said Falk. “It started with the original donation from the family back in 1964, and includes subsequent purchases.”
Falk said, “I am pleased that we were able to protect this land from development pressures and to provide increased opportunities for people to enjoy the park.”
The property is gently rolling and contains a tributary to Black Earth Creek. It consists of a small parcel surrounded by Festge Park, adjacent to the scenic overlook of the valley that encompasses Cross Plains, Black Earth and Mazomanie, and a larger parcel that frames the park on the east.
The acquisition enhances the recreational and ecological integrity of the park and plays an important role in preserving the undeveloped entry to Festge Park and scenic views along USH 14.
The Dane County Board approved the $277,000 purchase from the Dane County Conservation Fund in Resolution No. 67, 2003-2004, at the July 10, 2003 meeting.
Festge Park is currently 131 acres in size and provides a commanding view of the Black Earth Creek Valley. It has a mature stand of hickory, oak, and cedar woods, which includes exceptional burr oaks along the edges.
Recreational facilities include three shelter houses, picnic areas, play equipment, nature trails, a softball field and group camp areas. Additionally, Salmo Pond and land adjacent to Black Earth Creek are extensions of Festge Park. The entrance to the park is located on Scherbel Road one and one-half miles west of the Village of Cross Plains on USH 14.
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