You are ACRES. You make it possible to protect land.

You are the explorers seeking respite, adventure and everything in between on the trails. You are the members who take responsibility and come together to protect land. You are the volunteers who invest your time, energy and sweat into ACRES. You are the land donors who permanently protect the places that matter most to you.

These are a few of your stories.


Brett Bloom and Bonnie Fortune

“We hold the need to be in these places deep in our DNA. The search is for the connections that emanate from this place, that inspire love of place, give transcendental awe at the complexities of life,” said Brett. In 2015, Brett Bloom and his wife, Bonnie Fortune, began posting Instagram photos of their family’s ACRES hikes. Their fun, frequent images and notes reveal deep connections to place and deep thinking about land use. To better understand their perspectives, writer Teresa ... Read More


Dave Brumm

“When you’re retired, you’re supposed to have fun. Instead, I was sitting around the house, not knowing what to do.” Dave Brumm taught math, philosophy, computer science and social studies for South Side High School and he had the education to support it. Dave earned an undergraduate degree in psychology form the Air Force Academy (he served in active duty for five years), a second major in meteorology from San José State and a Masters in Education from Indiana-Purdue University Fort ... Read More


Velma Caprarotta

“I love the land and wanted to keep the Caprarotta family name on it, and I feel great about protecting it with ACRES members.” Velma Caprarotta has a long history with and a deep-seated love of the Elkhart County land she recently donated to ACRES Land Trust. Born in 1924, she grew up in the farmhouse just across the road from her recently protected property. Her late husband, Francis, and his family emigrated from Italy to Chicago in 1925 and purchased the land across the road, now know ... Read More


Joe and Nancy Conrad

Although Mother Nature feigns sleep at this time of year, undercover she is alive with activity. She beckons into her wondrous, quiet world those of us open to adventure. Fortified with a down jacket, warm gloves, sturdy hiking boots, and a strong walking stick, you are ready to enter a tranquil world of sight, sound, smell and touch unlike any other. Nancy: My first glimpse of the world came during an Indiana blizzard blowing a foot of fresh snow over the ground. I have felt at home in ... Read More


Heather DeLorenzo

“When you love a place, you take care of it.” My name is Heather DeLorenzo and my story with ACRES Land Trust began in 2014 when I first discovered the organization and became interested in supporting their mission. Since then, a few ACRES properties in Wabash County have become near-and-dear to my heart: Kokiwanee is where I go when I’m feeling adventurous and only want to drive twenty minutes. Hathaway Preserve at Ross Run is where I go when I want to hike in the midst of a geol ... Read More


Josie Fox

“ACRES caught my eye during trips to Indiana over 20 years ago, and this has evolved into a mentorship. ACRES’ programs are outstanding! Their pipeline of information to members is always high-quality. As a result of my ongoing interaction with ACRES staff, I feel confident asking how to carry out tasks on local, regional and state topics. ACRES oversees projects from start to finish, providing in-house and outside research and planning to create the big picture.”   [Editor's no ... Read More


Kristie Fuller

“My grandfather, whose parents lived near here, remembered as a boy, trees so big on this land that three to four men together couldn’t put their arms around them.” Kristie Fuller’s recently donated 56-acre Wells County farm and forest, named for her father, Francis Fuller, and her grandfather, Hurb Fuller, tells her family’s story on the land. Fuller’s tale is a firsthand account of a larger narrative of Hoosier land use history in the 200 years since European settlement. [cap ... Read More


Pam George

"The colors, sounds and scents of the wild are exhilarating. They instill in me a feeling of order, purpose and wonder. If I can instill that sense in others, it’s been a successful day!"     Pam George, an active lifelong educator, taught elementary students, supported teachers as a principal, teaches future teachers at IPFW, volunteers for several Allen County nature organizations, co-coordinates the master naturalist program through Allen County Parks and serves ... Read More


Dick Loney

“You know, I’ve been exploring with friends long enough that I’ve seen many places before they became nature preserves." To date, long-time ACRES member and volunteer Dick Loney has seen roughly 467 nature preserves in Indiana. He’s also spent plenty of time on home turf, helping tend ACRES preserves. What comes of a lifetime quest—an insatiable curiosity for seeing and protecting natural Indiana firsthand? Where does one begin? “It was the 1950s. We always explored as kids. Wo ... Read More


Mike Saylor & Dave Ray

“He left me for dead in the rain. On the Appalachian Trail. I’m not kidding. There’s a video.” That’s how Dave Ray introduces his hiking buddy, Mike Saylor. The two Ohio pastors recently visited ACRES’ office to check out Helen Swenson’s hand-drawn map of Wing Haven, to see the office, and to meet the staff who care for the land they love to hike. And talk about their hiking experiences. Dave and Mike explain that for them, ACRES preserves provide weekday sabbaticals, persona ... Read More