Photo of E Lazy S Ranch from The Herald Times
There’s a lot of fanfare around grant awards, but what happens after the ceremonial checks are presented and the reporters have published their articles? Our partners get down to business.
For 26 years, GOCO has improved Colorado’s great outdoors with the help of Colorado Lottery proceeds. We’ve put more than $1.2 billion in proceeds back into 5,200 projects to improve the lives of Coloradans across the state.
After projects are awarded funding, grant recipients have about two years to make their projects happen. In July, four projects closed, representing more than $675,000 in GOCO investments into local communities across the state. Scroll to see if one’s near you:
E Lazy S Ranch Conservation Legacy
$420,000 grant to Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust
The Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust received GOCO funds to acquire a conservation easement on the 562-acre E Lazy S Ranch. Nestled among three existing conserved ranches, the E Lazy S Ranch was one of the largest remaining, previously unprotected properties along the White River in an area known as Agency Park. Conservation of the ranch tied together a 4,492-acre block of conserved land in the heart of the valley and preserves the unique forest habitat specific to the Yampa and White River Basins—a forest type that is found in fewer than 25 places in the world. The diverse habitat on the property supports a variety of wildlife species including big game, several hundred bird species, small mammals, and amphibians. The White River is also home to the Colorado roundtail chub, a state fish species of special concern, and provides habitat for river otter, a species listed as threatened in Colorado. Read more about E Lazy S Ranch and its rich cultural history >>
Las Animas School Multi-Purpose Field and Outdoor Learning Environment
$198,693 grant to the City of Las Animas
With the help of GOCO funds, Las Animas School District partnered with Colorado Health Foundation to transform a once unusable sticker patch into a recreational hub for students and the community. The project includes a new multi-purpose field and an outdoor learning environment that features a wetland experiential area, storm water garden, and irrigation system. This space is open to the Las Animas community and utilized for school sports, recreation league activities, and community events. See the full list of GOCO-funded projects in Bent County >>
Floyd Hill Open Space Noxious Weed Mitigation & Trail Building
$21,000 grant to Mountain Area Land Trust
Mountain Area Land Trust, in partnership with Clear Creek County Open Space, received a GOCO grant to fund a Youth Corps project on the recently acquired Floyd Hill Open Space. For the first two weeks of the project, Mile High Youth Corps focused on noxious weed mitigation on 100 acres of open space meadow. During the third and final week of the project, crews constructed 4,600 linear feet of trail on the newly developed trail system. The new trail will provide access to a previously inaccessible public open space. Learn more about Colorado Youth Corps Association grants >>
John Griffin Regional Park Tamarisk and Russian Olive Abatement ‐ Phase III
$36,000 grant to the Cañon City Area Metro Recreation and Park District
The Cañon City Area Recreation and Park District used its Youth Corps grant to remove invasive tree species from a 10‐acre portion of John Griffin Regional Park. The highly popular Arkansas Riverwalk Trail system winds its way through two miles of the park, where the tamarisk and Russian olive trees have damaged the habitat of native wildlife and crowded out the native willow, cottonwood, and poplar trees. Building on invasive species removal projects from previous years, Mile High Youth Corps crew members have helped restore the park’s native ecosystems and have provided better public access along the Riverwalk Trail. Check out the Mile High Youth Corps’ Facebook page to learn more about their projects >>