Olsen Barn receives new foundation, other upgrades

Friends of the Olsen Barn, your passion for this unique property and your generosity is helping to restore and manage a beloved place that should be considered as a model for community conservation. From raising the money to purchase the 107-acre Chester Meadows property, to your tremendous show of support for barn repairs, it is simply incredible what donors and volunteers have done to help make this project possible.

When the Feather River Land Trust began raising funds to conserve the Olsen Barn and Meadow property there was an urgent timeline to raise the funds to complete the purchase. FRLT took the risk of buying the property without raising additional money to cover costs associated with the ongoing management of the property (usually additional funds are invested into a stewardship endowment).

In 2016, FRLT worked with the community to raise $100,000 for the “Raising the Barn” campaign. These funds have been put to good use in 2017. We have accomplished great things to keep this beloved barn standing for another 100 years! With your help, your local land trust is making great progress on this culturally and ecologically special place. Here’s a snapshot of what’s been accomplished in 2017.

A new foundation

The FRLT’s stewardship team partnered with Greg Lopez Construction of Lake Almanor to stabilize the 120-plus-year-old barn, including the removal and replacement of the east and western portions of the concrete foundation.

Custom flashing was installed to protect the large hewn sill from the elements and the north and south foundations have been removed. Concrete will be poured when the soil is dry in early summer.

Repairing the roof

Greg Lopez Construction brought in a large lift to make repairs to the roof on the south side of the barn. The crew also installed metal flashing on both the north and south sides of the roof.

While they had the lift on site, they removed and replaced the damaged siding on the southern gable end of the barn.

Events

FRLT hosted several community events in 2017, including bird walks, history talks, Grebe Festival events and a summertime float on the North Fork Feather River that was followed with live music by Rickety Bridge and a barbecue celebration at the barn.

In addition to making the barn more safe and stable, public access improvements to date include a small parking area and access point off of Highway 36, mowed parking and walking trails and a bench in recognition of Marti and Dan Sundeen.

Moving ahead in 2018

FRLT’s dedicated stewardship staff along with members of the Olsen Management Group is committed to monitor and care for the property forever.

FRLT hopes to have more community events in 2018 and they are developing policies and procedures for private events on the property.

The organization will be maintaining and planning new trails, developing and installing new interpretive signs and installing a water line to the barn for fire suppression purposes and for a drinking fountain for visitors and their pets.

Ongoing management of the Olsen Barn Meadow costs about $50,000 per year, which doesn’t include major infrastructure projects.

New benches are planned for a number of locations on the property. Should individuals in the community like a bench in honor of a loved one or as an expression of your own love of the Olsen Barn and Meadow Property, contact Karen Kleven at 283-5758 Ext. 103.

For additional information about the Olsen Barn Meadow or if you would like to make a financial donation to help support its management, contact Kleven at the number above or Nils Lunder, ext.107. Donors can also go to frlt.org or send donations to FRLT, P.O. Box 1826, Quincy, CA 95971.

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