Friends of the Maple River wetlands tour Sept. 19 in Hubbardston

By Elisabeth Waldon • Last Updated 10:00 am on Thursday, September 13, 2012

HUBBARDSTON — The Friends of the Maple River bi-monthly meeting on Sept. 19 will be a wetlands development field tour on a farm in southeast Montcalm County.

Donald Cooper, who will soon retire as Montcalm County drain commissioner, has a farm at 11260 South Crystal Road in the Hubbardston area. He has developed and/or restored three separate wetland units on his farm and wants to share his ideas and thoughts on how a landowner can restore or develop wetlands, and the importance of wetlands in good land management.

The field tour is slated to start at 6 p.m. Cooper’s farm is located on South Crystal Road approximately one eighth of a mile south of East Bogart Road. To reach the farm, take South Crystal Road by turning south off of Highway M-57 (three miles west of Carson City) and driving south on South Crystal Road 3 3/8 mile to Cooper’s farm. To reach the farm from Highway M-21, turn north onto  Hayes Road in the village of Muir, then drive 7 miles north to McKenna Road, turn right onto McKenna Road and drive 1/2 mile east to Vernier Road, turn left onto Vernier Road, drive 1.7 miles north on Vernier Road to East Bogart Road, turn right onto East Bogart Road and drive 1/2 mile to South Crystal road, then right (south) onto South Crystal Road and drive south approximately 300 feet to the Cooper residence.

On the east side of South Crystal Road, across the road from the entrance to the farm residence, is a farm lane. Take the farm lane east to the wetlands site. There will be a Friends of the Maple River directional sign at the farm lane entrance.

On another note, the Friends of the Maple River will host its annual Float the Maple River trip on Sept. 22. The float trip will be on the section of the river that runs through the Maple River State Game area that straddles U.S. Highway 127.

The trip is scheduled for the morning. Details about the trip will be posted online at and on the organization’s Facebook page “Friends of the Maple River.”

The Friends of the Maple River cooperative program with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources to monitor for invasive plant species on the Maple River State Game Area is at a stage where they need volunteers to assist with the project. For details and information, call Friends of the Maple River President Jon Morrison at (989) 224-1106 on evenings or weekends.

The Friends of the Maple River organization is based in St. Johns.

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