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Public open house June 16 to discuss state park interest in acquiring property near Sand Lake Estuary

May 19, 2014

Pacific City OR - The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department will host a public open house to answer questions and listen to community feedback related to the department's interest in acquiring property in Tillamook County for use as a future state park. The meeting will be held June 16, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Kiawanda Community Center, 34600 Cape Kiwanda Drive, Pacific City. Map: http://goo.gl/maps/qe1uR

The area is 357 acres on the southern side of the Sand Lake estuary known as the Beltz property. The acreage is divided by Sandlake Road into mostly pasture and forestland to the east, and wetlands, dunes, and beachfront on the west. State park management would likely focus on restoring and protecting natural water flow, plants and animals, and accommodating light trail recreation, mostly from nearby communities. Sand Lake is one of the least-developed estuaries on the coast.

Feedback collected at the meeting will be delivered to the Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission at its June 25 meeting. At its April meeting, the Commission expressed support for the idea of acquiring the property, a position that dates back more than 30 years, but it did not take any action to acquire the property. The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department does have an option to buy Beltz, subject to the Commission's approval.

The property is close to the existing Clay Myers State Natural Area on Whalen Island and a county park.

More information is online at http://www.oregon.gov/oprd/pages/commission-beltz.aspx