The Mace Family Watchable Wildlife Area
The land, from the Mace family’s 165-acre property, is held in trust and will eventually be deeded to the ODFW and managed as the Mace Family Watchable Wildlife Area in conjunction with the Ken Denman Wildlife Management Area.
It has tremendous potential to be one of Southern Oregon’s greatest sites—benefiting the public for generations to come.
It will become a public place for visitors to enjoy the outdoors and interact with wildlife in a tribute to the Mace family and Bob’s vision.
The area will become a family-friendly day-use area with walking paths and easy-access viewing spots for picnickers, birders, anglers, outdoor-oriented consumers statewide and nationwide, and the general public to enjoy.
The building of modern restrooms and other facilities at the Watchable Wildlife Area will be funded from earnings on the trust, which is already funding other watchable wildlife projects and activities in the region.
The Mace Family Watchable Wildlife Area…
- Is a gift to the community—turning private land into a public area and increasing public access to the Rogue River.
- Involves the unique collaboration of private, public, agency, and diverse industry stakeholders.
- Paves the way for industries to initiate similar projects—exhibiting the highest and best use of the property and increasing its value.
- Enhances the economy of Jackson County and surrounding areas.
- In Oregon, outdoor recreation generates $12.8 billion in consumer spending, 141,000 in direct Oregon jobs, $40 billion in wages and salaries, and $955 million in state and local tax revenue (Outdoor Industry Organization, 2012).
- Accentuates Southern Oregon’s already strong identity—tying all of its attractions together.
- Is in the middle of a Conservation Opportunity Area—a landscape identified by ODFW where broad fish and wildlife conservation goals can best be met. These are the primary areas ODFW will promote as investment priorities for conservation of watchable wildlife species. voluntary conservation tools.
Local ponds provide a glimpse of the future for the Mace Family Watchable Wildlife Area.
Local examples of the recreational use of reclaimed aggregate mining sites are the five gravel pits that formed the Expo Ponds at the Jackson County Fairgrounds and Exposition Park in Central Point, Oregon. One of these former gravel pits, the Phyllis Mace Memorial Lake, located adjacent to Peninger Road and next to the Southern Oregon RV Park, has been a popular wildlife viewing and bird watching site since the 1970s. Recent renovations, in partnership with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Jackson County Parks, and others, include wheelchair-access ramps, viewing platforms, and a dock, as well as an asphalt pathway connecting it to other Expo Ponds.
The nearby Whetstone Creek and the Rogue River’s riparian area will be restored to create quality anchor habitats for the wildlife species Mace advocated for in his life. In fact, riparian restoration along the Rogue on the Mace Watchable Wildlife Area property has already begun.