Chesterton Tribune



New Carol Cook Wetland Overlook birding site in Jackson to open Friday

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The Carol Cook Wetland Overlook at 582 Burdick Road in Jackson Township will officially open during this year’s Dunes Birding Festival, with a dedication ceremony at 6:30 p.m. Friday, May 17, followed by a meeting of Boy Scout Troop 929 at 7 p.m.

Birders and the community at large alike are invited by the Porter County Chapter of the Izaak Walton League of America to attend the opening of the site, named for Carol Cook, a local artist and life-long Northwest Indiana conservationist.

The Ikes and Troop 929 have been worked toward this day for over a year: the Porter County Chapter’s mission is the conservation of wild spaces and Troop 929 accepted the challenge of building a boardwalk and overlook viewing platform. To give birders easy year-round access to the site--and magnificent views of waterfowl, waders, and shorebirds--the Ikes also built a small parking lot.

Meanwhile, the Ikes will work with the U. S. Fish & Wildlife Service to remove invasive phragmite this summer and continue to keep it as “native” as possible for the birds.

Discovery Trackers 4-H Club was involved as well in this project by raising funds and contributing an Osprey nesting tower to be erected this spring by Izaak Walton League member Jim Phares.

Phares is the wetland owner, scout father, and overlook neighbor, and has been restoring the wetland on his property for 25 years.

You can find the overlook site on Google Maps at ‘Carol Cook Wetland Overlook-IWLA PCC’ 582 Burdick Road, Westville, Ind.

The overlook is listed in the Indiana Audubon Birding Festival Guide and will be featured during the Dunes Birding Festival this week. During the festival, you can meet chapter members at their annual birdhouse building booth for families from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, May 19, at the Dunes State Park Nature Center.

Visitors to the overlook are encouraged to add their experiences to the site’s Facebook page.

For more information about IWLA-PCC, visit or FB @PCCIWLA



Posted 5/17/2018




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