Home Membership/Donate Partner With Us Become a Member The Conservation Circle COL Endowment Business Members Honoraria & Memorials Preserving Land Preserving Land Why Preserve Land? How To Protect Your Land Partnership with The Pokagon Fund Glossary of Terms Protected Properties Map Our Preserves Grand Beach Marsh Jens Jensen Preserve Louis J. Sima Great Lakes Marsh Robinson Woods Burns Prairie Critter Haven Dayton Wet Prairie Eleanor O'Connor Wilson Woods Flynn Woods The Woods Turtle Creek Preserve The Merritt Family Preserve Chris Thompson Memorial Preserve Edward and Elizabeth Leonard Wildlife Preserve Ongoing Projects Chris Thompson Memorial Preserve Galien River Marsh Invasive Species Flynn Woods Recreational Improvements Visit Our Preserves Louis J. Sima Great Lakes Marsh Robinson Woods Grand Beach Marsh Jens Jensen Preserve Flynn Woods Turtle Creek Preserve The Merritt Family Preserve Chris Thompson Memorial Preserve Other COL Preserves... Stewardship Stewardship Caring for the Land Become a Land Steward Ongoing Projects Galien River Marsh Invasive Species News & Events Latest News and Photos News Media Clips Photo Galleries COL Video Library Publications Current Newsletter Archived Newsletters 2018 Annual Report 2017 Annual Report 2016 Annual Report Upcoming Events Events Calendar 10th Annual Barn Benefit About About About Chikaming Open Lands Milestones Current Audited Financial Statement Board of Directors Current COL Board of Directors Staff Current COL Staff Blog Contact

About Chikaming Open Lands

Chikaming Open Lands (COL) is a non-profit conservation organization working with landowners in the Galien River watershed and southwest Berrien County to preserve open space and the diverse, natural character of the area. The Galien watershed is nestled in the southwest corner of Michigan, home to lakes, dunes, white sandy beaches, quiet woodlands and farms. Today, COL holds 30 conservation easements and owns thirteen nature preserves totaling 1,804 acres.

COL was founded in 1999 when several concerned community members saw how drastically the area was changing, from natural and rural to more and more housing developments. They decided to take a stand and become more involved in community planning efforts by forming a land trust.

For the first six years COL was an all-volunteer organization governed by a Board of Directors. Today, COL has more than 500 supporting member households, whose contributions cover the majority of our operating expenses as well as a professional staff that oversees the day-to-day operations.

Chikaming Open Lands is incorporated as a non-profit organization in the State of Michigan, and has been granted tax-exempt, 501(c)(3), status by the Internal Revenue Service. As a sponsoring member of the Land Trust Alliance in Washington, DC, our organization meets or exceeds the standards and practices established for land trusts across the country.

Below is a map showing the properties Chikaming Open Lands protects. You can see a larger version of the map here.