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Tarpon Springs, April 2, 2024 – WK Preservation Group (WKPG) and Pinellas County have signed an agreement to jointly fund acquisition of the 14-acre West Klosterman Preserve from Pinellas County Schools.

The signing by County Administrator Barry Burton on April 2 is the final step in the joint funding process that began last year and which was unanimously approved in August 2023 by the Board of County Commissioners. The county agreed to commit $1.5 million in Penny for Pinellas funds toward the $3 million asking price for the Preserve. WK Preservation Group has a deadline of Sept. 15, 2024, to raise its share. With donations and pledges, the amount left to raise is now $885,000.

“We’ve got a big gap to close, but we’ve done so much, generated strong support, and provided a focus for community involvement in preservation causes. We’ll get there” said WKPG President Tex Carter.

“We are proud to support the park and preserve areas in Pinellas County, so that all of our residents may have easier access to natural spaces and wildlife. The West Klosterman Preserve signifies Pinellas County’s ongoing commitment to protecting our green spaces for the residents of today and tomorrow,” said Kathleen Peters, 2024 county commission chair.

The grassroots nonprofit has been trying to save the environmentally valuable West Klosterman Preserve from destruction since 2020. After two unsuccessful attempts at securing legislative funding in 2022, WKPG volunteers have been actively raising funds through appearances at community events, creating business sponsorships, and conducting tours of the preserve in exchange for donations. Look for future information on upcoming events at www.wkpreserve.com/wkpg-events.

What’s next?

After completing the West Klosterman project, WKPG will turn its attention to saving other wild parcels in densely populated Pinellas County from development. 

The West Klosterman property, located on West Klosterman Road west of Carlton Road, is adjacent to the 76-acre Mariner’s Point Management Area (MPMA), which is already under county management. The county will manage the two properties as a larger preserve, effectively doubling upland habitat for rare and endangered species. It will also increase the area’s natural drainage system and prevent an estimated 600 extra daily car trips on narrow, dead-end Klosterman Road.

How to donate

WKPG has joined forces with Pinellas Community Foundation in seeking the large donations that are key to completing acquisition of the Preserve. To donate, pledge a closing donation, participate in an event or become a WKPG volunteer, visit www.wkpreserve.com or email the Board at info@wkpreserve.com.

WKP - Year 2023 in Review

  • You may have seen yourself in the end of year video above. We have grown, and people have come together to support the efforts to save the West Klosterman Preserve and to participate in events and activities in the Tampa Bay area where our voices and our actions support the environmental preservation for our plants, animals and the people that live around them. 2023 has been a good year.
  • A real show of support came from Pinellas County’s Board of Commissioners and County staff with their commitment to provide $1.5 million in funding to help save the West Klosterman Preserve. 
          TAMPA BAY TIMES: PINELLAS COUNTY PLEDGES 1.5M
  • The County and WKPG have agreed on the terms of their matching contributions, $1.5 million from
    each, to acquire the West Klosterman Preserve. We are in our final campaign to raise our share to
    match the County and every contribution, large or small, will make a difference.

                ABC Action News: COUNTY SETS FUNDRAISING DEADLINE

  • What still needs to be done? WKPG still has to raise our portion for the partnership and we are making great progress. At the end of 2023, we have raised over $590,000. A few more major donors, and a lot more support from all of us will make the final difference.
  • The following events are on the calendar, ranging from opportunities to tour the West Klosterman Preserve, to joining in Pinellas Trail Cleanups, to participation in neighborhood markets, and we will be lining up more opportunities in the community to help spread the word and meet our goals. Check back here for more events because we want to see you there!

READ MORE NEWS ABOUT THE WEST KLOSTERMAN PRESERVE PROJECT 

READ OUR LATEST NEWSLETTER 

Upcoming Events

Help support our fundraising efforts to Save the West Klosterman Preserve and other wilderness parcels in Pinellas County and beyond by attending one of our events. Stay tuned and check back often for upcoming events.

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Mission

To preserve the natural heritage of open space land by protecting its natural forest, plant life, and all native animals in their community. 

Vision

We envision accomplishing this through education and collaboration for the benefit of present and future generations.

Entrusted to Act

Seeking to Protect Pinellas County’s disappearing undeveloped sites.

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