January 17, 2018 Blog, Your Stories No Comments

When Elizabeth and Mark Leppek sat down to make a list of their priorities for philanthropic giving, ACRES Land Trust immediately came to mind.

The Leppeks, of Fort Wayne, say that while they appreciate the benefit of manicured parks, they find something special about wild, natural places. They consider ACRES the “hometown hero” regional equivalent of America’s National Park System.

“It’s a local benefit!” Mark says.

For the Leppeks, budgeting their ACRES donation into monthly installments seemed logical, and auto-withdrawal means the pressure is off them to remember to give every month. Mark explains: “It’s a little bit easier to make a smaller monthly donation than come up with one big donation once a year.”

The Leppeks have been exploring ACRES’ spaces since they first received a Preserve Guide at the Fort Wayne Home and Garden Show about 10 years ago. That Guide serves as their hiking diary of sorts, where the Leppeks date their visits to each preserve. A decade later, there have been many visits.

Their favorite places to hike are Bicentennial Woods in Huntertown, with its towering old trees along Willow Creek, and Kokiwanee in Wabash County, with scenic bluffs along the Salamonie River.

The Leppeks often hike with their 15-year-old son and 12-year-old daughter. The family usually meets friends or relatives and makes an event of their visit. Mark says, “It’ll turn into an afternoon where we can walk around and appreciate nature and visit while we’re walking—it’s a time of togetherness, of catching up.”

If, like the Leppeks, you view ACRES as a “hometown hero” in protecting natural areas, please consider a recurring gift. Your gifts will be a dependable source of support that ACRES can count on throughout the year.

Lives today are busy. That’s why we’ve made it easy for you to make a gift to ACRES on your schedule, not ours. You can give monthly or annually, and can even set your ACRES membership to auto-renew! Using a credit card, you can keep your membership current with a one-time sign up — for years to come (as long as your credit card information is current).

To set up this option, you can visit acreslandtrust.org/autorenew. You also may choose to set up automatically recurring gifts like the Leppeks. Each year, ACRES will send confirmation of your auto-renewal sign-up and notify you prior to billing. Please visit acreslandtrust.org/recurring for more information and to set up your recurring gift to ACRES Land Trust.

Our mission is preserving natural areas—every day—forever. With your ongoing support, together, we protect the places you love.