St. Simons Land Trust. Preserving the Natural and Scenic Character of our Island -- Issue 12, February 2014
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St. Simons Land Trust. Preserving the Natural and Scenic Character of our Island
  Issue 12 February 2014  

Stephanie Knox Named Cannon's Point Preserve Manager


The St. Simons Land Trust welcomes Stephanie Knox as its first Cannon’s Point Preserve Manager. Stephanie earned her Bachelor’s of Science in Animal Biotechnology and Conservation from Delaware Valley College and most recently was the ecological management technician at Little St. Simons Island. She brings more than five years of experience in conservation and land management to the Land Trust and will oversee the ongoing operations of Cannon’s Point up to and after the opening scheduled for early spring.

"I'm very excited to join such a dedicated team at the St. Simons Land Trust," said Stephanie. "I look forward to continuing to work with numerous conservation partners, volunteers and others to protect and share the beautiful landscapes that we all love."

In the past few months, many exciting milestones have happened at Cannon’s Point marking our steady progress towards public opening. In December, the Land Trust hosted representatives from Georgia-Pacific Foundation and GP Cellulose Brunswick for a special dedication of the recently completed Education Pavilion.

This month, design and construction work has begun for the entrance kiosk and two observation towers at the north end and southern areas. All structures at Cannon’s Point have been designed to visually fit into the natural surroundings and to honor the Land Trust’s conservation priorities to have minimal impact on wildlife and natural areas. "The tower at the north end is 20 feet high and will be rectangular in shape to accommodate better viewing of the Altamaha Delta and the plantation ruins just below," said Stephanie.


At Cannon's Point: Sneak Peek Days for Members Only


Prior to opening to the public, the Land Trust will be hosting a soft opening for members only in early March. This will be a great opportunity for members to see Cannon’s Point Preserve, explore the completed trails and historic sites, and give us some feedback on the CPP experience. During the soft opening, the Preserve will be open Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and will be staffed by volunteers.

To check your membership status or to join in time to enjoy this special members-only opportunity, call Sarah Harris, 912-638-9109.


Renew Your Membership

Winged Wonders!


The Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) is the iconic symbol for the United States of America and we are fortunate enough to have this magnificent bird nesting in coastal Georgia during the winter months.

Bald Eagles are one of the largest birds of prey averaging 31” tall and 9.5 pounds. This species is here year round and breeding pairs are known to return to their same nest year after year to breed. In February, Bald Eagle chicks (eaglets) will hatch and steadily grow preparing to leave the nest in late March or April. Bald Eagle populations are doing better each year with lots of effort provided by many organizations, though they are still listed as threatened under Georgia’s Endangered Wildlife Act.

To learn more please visit Georgia DNRs Wildlife Resources website at



Member Spotlight: The Active and Involved Vrolijk Family


The Vrolijk family arrived to St. Simons Island four years ago and joined the St. Simons Land Trust’s Live Oak Society that same year. “When Nick’s work allowed us the opportunity to make a move, we chose St. Simons Island because it was on the coast and close to my own family in Albany, Georgia,” said Sarah Vrolijk.

Her husband Nick works in biopharmaceuticals and has a PhD in marine biochemistry. Their love for the coast



has always been a strong and central part of their lives.

The Vrolijks are also long-time supporters of The Nature Conservancy and felt that supporting the Land Trust was an obvious match. “After hearing about the effort to purchase and preserve Cannon’s Point, we were excited to join the Land Trust,” Sarah said. “The educational opportunities that [Cannon’s Point] will provide are very exciting.”

The Vrolijks have three children, Jake, Catherine and Anna, and on the weekends when they’re not traveling for soccer or dance, they’re out on the bike trails. “I think the opportunity for kids to safely explore the Island on bikes is one of its most unique attributes; there aren’t many communities where kids can take off on bikes alone anymore.”

A very active family, the Vrolijks also spend time paddle boarding through the marshes and discovering wildlife in their own backyard. Catherine and Anna are both budding photographers and say they love practicing their art out in the woods.

The Land Trust is grateful to have families like the Vrolijks supporting our mission and sharing their love for the Island and the outdoors with their children. We know in the future, Anna, Catherine and Jake will do the same for their children.



Make it Easy. Make it Monthly!


The Land Trust invites you to join a growing number of members choosing to make their annual membership contribution monthly, over 12 months, via credit card. Monthly giving provides consistent support of the Land Trust"s mission. Here's how it works:

You determine the amount of your monthly donation.

Your credit card is charged each month and you receive an email confirmation. In January, you receive an annual giving statement.

Your membership automatically renews each year!


Save the date!


The Land Trust’s annual Live Oak Society Reception will be held Saturday, April 26,
6 p.m. at The Cloister. Interested in joining the Live Oak Society? Click here.



SSLT Blog Launched


The Land Trust now has a blog! Log on and read fun and interesting posts by SSLT staff, Board members and guest bloggers. Visit our website or click:



St. Simons Land Trust    |    1624 Frederica Road, St. Simons Island, Georgia 31522    |    912.638.9109    |