FOREST CITY, Maine — The Woodie Wheaton Land Trust celebrated the grand opening of its new conservation center on Sunday, Aug. 23.
Nearly 70 supporters from Maine and New Brunswick attended the dedication of the Woodie Wheaton Land Trust Center in memory of area fishing guide and lodge owner Woodie Wheaton, according to a press release from Paul First, the trust’s executive director.
Wheaton’s 93-year-old widow, Ruth Wheaton, cut the grand opening ribbon.
“Woodie would really have appreciated this [event and this building],” she said. “I asked him to go to church with me one day. He said, ‘I am going to the woods. That is my church.’”
Brothers Dale and Arthur Wheaton also expressed appreciation for their mother’s contribution of the land on which the center is built and thanked the many individuals, foundations and businesses who contributed to the project.
The center provides office and meeting facilities for the land trust and serves as a base for educational outreach. It is available for use by community groups in Maine and neighboring New Brunswick.
The trust aims to preserve the natural heritage of the Chiputneticook chain of lakes, helping to connect conservation and community, according to the release.
Hundreds of volunteers and supporters across New England and New Brunswick made construction of the Woodie Wheaton Land Trust Center possible. The trust is working to raise the final funds needed, which have been financed with a bridge loan. Contributions can be made to the WWLT c/o Treasurer, P.O. Box 2, Orient 04471.