Winter walk at the Kent Bog raises awareness

Sara Williams

Friends of the Kent Bog, an advocacy group dedicated to the preservation of the nature preserve off Meloy Road, gathered Saturday to experience the bog and to enroll more members in the informal group.

Currently, the group is dealing with issues endangering the Kent Bog, such as the plans to build a 288-unit apartment complex nearby, said Gordon Vars, facilitator of Friends of the Kent Bog. The complex would cover 15 acres across the street from the bog.

Vars said this is a problem because it’s hard to say what’s going to happen to Kent Bog after the complex is built and the people move in. Vars said the men, women, children, cats and dogs living so closely across the street “pose a serious environmental threat to the bog.”

“Once it’s gone, it’ll be gone forever,” Vars said. “It’s been here 12,000 years. How dare you?”

The main problem facing the bog is the trash, pollution and rainwater run off. EQK, LLC, Inc., is the developer of the complex, to be called Plum Creek Apartments.

“We’ve been fussing with the developers to do something with the rainwater so none of it gets in the bog,” Vars said.

Vars is now relatively happy with the arrangement made with the developers to make a retention pond to drain the rainwater away from Kent Bog, although he remains unsure of what influence the apartment complex will have.

“In the summertime, it’s like you’re in Jurassic Park,” said Charlotte McCurdy, a Northeast district preserve manager of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Natural Areas and Preserves.

Karl Liske, a member of Friends of the Kent Bog, said some people just aren’t aware of the bog.

“A lot of people didn’t know it existed until they wanted to put a shopping mall up across the street,” Liske said.

Contact public affairs reporter Sara Williams at [email protected].