January 2019
Dear Friends and Supporters,

All of us at the Land Trust are genuinely grateful for the dedication of so many across the coast who loyally support efforts to preserve the finest qualities of this spectacular barrier island. Those supporters enabled us to acquire multiple St. Simons properties in 2018, extend efforts in the long-time management of those properties, and increase education and outreach to the public regarding land conservation. We look forward to sharing more details about 2018 in our Year in Review that you will be receiving soon.

In the meantime, we have hit the ground running in 2019 with our annual Oyster Roast, and we are looking forward to partnering with the entire community in the months ahead. On behalf of the Land Trust board and staff, I send you the very best on this cold winter day and sincerest gratitude for your support.

David H. Pope
Executive Director
19th Annual Oyster Roast
A Special Thank You to our
Oyster Roast Volunteers of the Year!

Bob Thompson and Mark Messersmith with Creative Printing , a 1% for St. Simons partner, have volunteered for nearly 20 years at the Land Trust's annual Oyster Roast. Because of their tireless work at the Low Country Boil station, and all the other things they do to make the event a success, Bob and Mark were two of three volunteers of the year honored at the pre-event party on the Friday night prior to the Roast. The third honoree was Mike Malone of Malone Electric who for more than a decade has created the magical atmosphere with thousands of lights strung throughout Gascoigne Bluff Park.

The cumulative years of work from these three gentlemen adds up to more than four decades of dedication to the Land Trust and its signature event. We can't imagine an Oyster Roast without them. Thank you, Bob, Mark, and Mike!
THANK YOU to all 100+ volunteers who helped execute the most successful
Oyster Roast in the Land Trust's history!
They cooked and shucked.
They greeted and gathered.
They set up and broke down tables and chairs.
They decorated and strung miles of lights.
They chilled the wine and poured the drinks.
They cleaned, and hauled, and recycled.
did whatever was needed
to make the 19th annual event
enjoyable for more than 1,200 attendees.

We are grateful for the dedication
and support of so many!

Check out our Oyster Roast Thank You ad
in The Brunswick News!
And thank you to our PRESENTING SPONSOR:
Click HERE to read more about the success of our 19th Annual Oyster Roast!
Honey Creek Oysters
Another benefit of the Land Trust's Oyster Roast is that this year
the discarded shells form the event will be utilized at the
Honey Creek Episcopal Camp and Retreat Center
in their living shoreline project and in helping to rebuild the bluff
that was damaged by Hurricane Irma in September of 2017 (please see photo below).
Photo courtesy of Benjamin Galland
Nature's Helpers Assist with Recycling
Before those oyster shells are used in
rebuilding the bluff and living shoreline at Honey Creek,
they are being "cured," or cleaned, by surrounding wildlife.
Over the next few months, insects and raccoons will be nibbling on
any remaining bits of oyster meat
that might have been left in the shells after the Oyster Roast.
Once the cleaning process is finished,
the oyster shells will be bagged, recycled, and reused
to create a living shoreline for more of their kind.

Stay tuned for more updates and photos from this natural shoreline stabilization process!
Speaking of
Right Direction for Right Whales
Did you know that Cannon's Point Preserve is the home of shell middens dating back to 2500 BCE?

Middens are deposits of shell, bone, soil, and artifacts.
A majority of the shells in these
prehistoric "garbage dumps" are from oysters , indicating the mollusks must have been a major food source for the Native American population that inhabited the area.

Not only were oyster shells used for generations in tabby construction on Georgia's barrier islands, the discarded shells were instrumental in developing the right soil conditions for maritime forests and native plants like St. Simons' live oaks, as well as rare species such as climbing buckthorn and Florida wild privet.

Learn more about Cannon's Point Preserve's habitat, wildlife
and history HERE .
The US South Atlantic coast
began this right whale calving season with the hope that there would be
at least one successful, healthy calf.

We are so excited that the
FOURTH right whale calf
was spotted off Jekyll Island
on January 25th!

These calves will nurse for the
first 6-12 months of their lives.
At roughly one year of age, when they are back in the northeastern US waters, the calves will leave their mother's side and begin feeding on zooplankton and krill.

Within the last decade,
the highest number of calves
born in a season was 39 individuals.
Although the current right whale population has a long way to go,
the beginning of this calving season continues to give hope.

For more information, click HERE .
1% for St. Simons NEW Businesses
We are thrilled to announce three new 1% for St. Simons business partners,
East Beach Yoga , NANCY, and Planters Exchange.

Thank you for supporting our community through your participation in the 1% program!
And thank you to ALL the 1% for St. Simons business partners!
To learn more about this program and how you can participate, please click HERE .
Partner of the Year Award
Sincerest thanks to the Golden Isles CVB for awarding the 1% for St. Simons program the Partner of the Year award at this year's Hospitality Celebration.

We are truly honored and thankful!

Read more from The Brunswick News HERE .
Read more from Coastal Illustrated HERE .
And thank you to all our 1% for St. Simons media partners
who continue to feature us in their publications!
Land Trust Dictionary
Wendy Barnes Design
"Conservation Easement"

Per the Land Trust Alliance, this is "a voluntary legal agreement between a landowner and a land trust or government agency that permanently limits uses of the land in order to protect its conservation values."

All conservation easements must "provide public benefits, such as water quality, farm and ranch land preservation, scenic views, wildlife habitat, outdoor recreation, education, and historic preservation."

The St. Simons Land Trust
holds 337 acres in six different conservation easements.
In addition, some of the properties we own are protected by conservation easements held by others, such as the Nature Conservancy.

Read more about
conservation easements HERE .
We are always eager to partner with businesses that share the Land Trust's goal of creating a community culture of conservation.
One such partner is
Wendy Barnes Design,
whose mission is to
"inspire champions for our planet's vibrant wildlife through
colorful and sustainable-minded
gifts that give back."

Illustrator Wendy Barnes
has designed a Live Oak pattern
that will be used in creating
eco-friendly, handmade products.
And for every item sold
in these Live Oak patterns,
10% will go directly to SSLT !

Wendy's Live Oak will go live in the next few weeks, so stay tuned!

To check out Wendy Barnes Design and other conservation partners,
click HERE .
Support Our Supporters!
On Tuesday, February 12th,
J.McLaughlin on St. Simons will be hosting a celebration for the launch of their February catalog which was photographed on Sea Island.

Each year, the J.McLaughlin company hosts over 500 events, each benefiting charitable organizations and non-profits ranging from local to national.

At this event, 15% of ALL proceeds will benefit the St. Simons Land Trust .

Click HERE to learn more!
Save the Dates
February 7-10: Whiskey, Wine & Wildlife. Learn more and register HERE .

February 9 : Volunteer Orientation at 9am. Register HERE .

February 12 : J.McLaughlin Catalog Launch Event. Learn more and RSVP HERE .

March 2 : Coastal WildScapes Annual Fundraiser - Starlight and Spartina. Register HERE .

March 8-10: Little St. Simons Island and Benjamin Galland Photography Workshop. Register HERE .

March 16 : Live Oak Society Reception at The Cloister.

April 13-14 : One Hundred Miles Choosing to Lead Conference. Read more HERE .

January 18, 2020 : 20th Annual Oyster Roast