Become a Member

Membership Campaign: April 1 – 30, 2014

For nearly 25 years, people like you have helped the McKenzie River Trust conserve over 4,000 acres of lands and waters that cradle us in western Oregon. Now we’re coming to you with a special request:

    Will you join us as a member to build the next 25 years of conservation success?

Your membership gift today will be matched dollar-for-dollar up to $5,000 by our friends at Mountain Rose Herbs. This offer is only available from April 1 – 30, so we’re asking you to GIVE NOW.

Membership FAQ

How do I become a member?

To become a member, simply make a donation through our secure online server at mckenzieriver.org. Or mail a check to: McKenzie River Trust, 1245 Pearl St, Eugene OR 97401. A gift of any size qualifies you as a member. Please give generously!

But I thought I was already a member….?

In fact, a membership program is a new thing for us. We have always valued our many supporters. You are the reason we can protect and care for land! But during our Living River Celebration last June, we realized how many people wanted a closer connection, a shared identity as members of MRT. So we are kicking off that program now.

Why should I become a member?

With your membership gift today, you will be part of a local organization that looks at conservation projects with the long term in mind. Without the support of people like you, we would not be here today.

Every week, we receive calls from landowners wanting to know how they can protect the land they cherish. Our mission is to help them achieve their vision for the future of these lands and to share the fruits of good land stewardship – clean water, nourishing foods, abundant fish and wildlife, memorable experiences in nature – with everyone.

By joining as a member of the McKenzie River Trust, you will help sustain those very values and our ability to protect them for our grandchildren’s grandchildren.

Why are you doing this now?

Over the years, many people have asked us how they can become members. And we’ve heard you loud and clear: you want a closer connection with the McKenzie River Trust and a way to identify other people who care about our clean water, fish, wildlife, and natural areas.

Today, we’re responding to your call. Our members, committed friends in our community who help protect and care for the special places that surround us, will be the core of what we do. Members will provide a stable base of support for us to get our boots on the ground, pursuing the next big land conservation opportunity. Within a few years, we hope to have 1,000 members.

What is the matching gift challenge?

Our friends at Mountain Rose Herbs are offering a matching gift challenge for all donations during the month of April. When you make a membership gift to the McKenzie River Trust from April 1st to 30th, your donation will be matched by Mountain Rose Herbs dollar-for-dollar up to $5,000. And if you give $100 or more you’ll receive our new MRT ceramic mug.

What are the benefits of a McKenzie River Trust membership?

You might be wondering: What do I get for my membership gift?

  • You will receive news about conservation on a regular basis by the means you choose: print newsletter, email, social media. You just let us know.
  • You’ll also get invitations to regular tours and events, including our annual Living River Celebration.
  • And you’ll be contributing to all of our projects, current and future.
  • As a member, you’ll also be able to spend time with other members, people like you who love western Oregon and its natural splendors.

What kinds of people are members?

Anglers, birders, bakers, painters, runners, walkers, bee-keepers, boaters, brewers – all are a part of our growing circle of friends who care for the lands and rivers of western Oregon.

So please join them today with your membership donation to the McKenzie River Trust. And invite your friends to do the same. And celebrate with us on Saturday, June 28, when the Living River Celebration returns to Green Island.

Thanks for your consideration.

Celebrate Someone You Love This Season

Volunteers on Green Island help protect newly planted native trees and shrubs. Photo by Brandi Ferguson.

Are you looking for a gift for someone who has everything?

This holiday season, you can make a tribute gift in honor of a friend or family member, or make a memorial gift in remembrance of a loved one.

A tribute gift is a special way to honor someone’s love for the lands and rivers that make western Oregon such a great place to work, live, and play.

What your gift will do

Your gift supports the protection and care of special places in these watersheds:
McKenzie, Siuslaw, Umpqua, Coast and Middle Forks of the Willamette, Upper Willamette River, and the coastal streams and lakes from Reedsport to Yachats, including the stunning Tenmile Creek drainage.

If you know someone who loves our rivers and lands, then make a tribute gift today.

Donate Now!

Restoration Progress on Green Island

Big Earth Works for Little Fish

Restoration on Green Island

Green Island low water crossing construction, photo by Chris vogel
The downstream run for a juvenile Chinook salmon can be a gauntlet. Flushed from mountain headwaters, they ride high winter flows with logs and stones, avoiding predators, looking for food, seeking to grow before heading out to the ocean. Floodplains and side channels can provide a bounty and a respite, but as waters drop young fish can also be cut off and isolated, trapped in pools and then puddles that warm and make them vulnerable to hungry birds, bull frogs and non-native bass.

This fall on Green Island we brought in the heavy equipment – dump trucks, backhoes, loaders, and even cranes – to provide safer passage for such small fry.

What you’ll see

The next time you cross the old McKenzie channel or “the neck” near the property’s center, you’ll see the results of three major earthworks that will make it easier for young salmon to get in and to get out of the site. The low water crossing, our road access across the historic McKenzie River channel onto the property, has been completely retrofitted with a concrete span engineered to withstand significant winter flooding. Crews have also been hard at work on a side channel of the Willamette River, placing massive logs and root-wads there, creating pools that are perfect for young salmon. And a culvert thirteen feet in diameter will help connect side channels of the mainstem Willamette to the historic McKenzie channel for longer seasonal stretches.

Why are we doing it?

These changes will provide more frequent floodplain connections, better passage for fish through the area, and better places for native fish and wildlife to thrive. The project brought more than $270,000 for local restoration contractors, including R.L. Reimers Company of Albany and the Corvallis-based River Design Group. Grants from the Bonneville Power Administration Willamette Biological Opinion Habitat Technical Team and Natural Resources Conservation Service are funding the work.

In the coming years, we expect to be carrying out similar work around the CARP ponds – the gravel mining site that we added to Green Island in 2010 – so look forward to more big equipment and earth moving on behalf of some tiny little fish.

1% for Watersheds Celebrates First Year

1% for Watersheds Celebration

Thursday December 5th from 5-8pm
At the Oakshire Public House, 221 Madison Street in Eugene

In 2013, Oakshire Brewing set aside 1% of revenue from sales of Watershed IPA in the southern Willamette Valley for the McKenzie River Trust’s work protecting watersheds in western Oregon. Join us at the Oakshire Public House to celebrate this partnership with Oregon Wood Fired Pizza, pints, and other people who care about the health of our rivers and lands.

More about the 1% for Watersheds program

“Our mission is to brew the highest quality beer while providing exceptional service to our customers. We cannot achieve either of these goals without the highest quality ingredients,” said Oakshire Founder Jeff Althouse. “We established a partnership with the McKenzie River Trust in 2011, and quickly realized we wanted to do more to protect our brewing source water.”

Clean water is essential to the brewing process and is a focus point of the Oakshire Brewing community. Eugene was chosen as Oakshire’s location in part due to the accessibility of clean, soft water from the McKenzie River.

“We’re very proud to have again earned Oakshire’s support,” said Joe Moll, Executive Director of the McKenzie River Trust. “The 1% for Watersheds program demonstrates their ongoing commitment to clean water and healthy watersheds, something that benefits our entire community.” Oakshire previously brewed three beers to benefit the McKenzie River Trust and commemorate EWEB’s 100th Anniversary.

McKenzie River Trust is committed to a future in which intact, functioning ecosystems provide clean water, abundant fish and wildlife, and productive natural landscapes throughout western Oregon.

Oakshire Brewing of Eugene, Oregon was founded in October 2006 and has become regionally and nationally recognized for consistently brewing fresh, unique and delicious beers. The name Oakshire represents their core values: Strength, Independence, and Community. Learn more about Oakshire Brewing, their craft beers, brewery events, tours and tastings at http://oakbrew.com.

Give Now

You love healthy natural lands. Now will you invest in their protection?

We share your passion.

Today, you have a special opportunity to support the McKenzie River Trust. People like you support our work – people who share your love for clean rivers, healthy forests and natural areas. And because of your donation, others will be able to experience the natural treasures we enjoy today, long after we are gone.

Please donate today to fuel that passion and protect and care for special lands.

Ten years ago MRT Board, staff and supporters brought such a desire to a big, complicated land transaction. The Green Island project was born, and MRT was transformed. This past summer we celebrated on siteperhaps you joined us?

As we shared the day with 800 others, we learned more about the experiences that drive all of us to support land and water conservation. We wrap those interests into every new project we pursue. And we’re thankful for the good fortune we’ve enjoyed.

But what if that were not the case?

What if land protection stopped, and there were fewer and fewer outlets for our love of nature? I suspect you’ve seen special places that were dear to you get paved over or crowded out.

A fear of such losses also drives our work. We never want to say, “What a shame…” about the places we enjoy today.

Your donation will keep that from happening. Please make a gift of $100 to protect and care for special lands this year.

Here’s how your gift will continue to make a difference.

In the last month we were able to increase the size of the Coyote Spencer Wetlands by 20%. We bought the extra ground from a neighbor who shares our love for the wetlands. We did so with grants and gifts from people like you. So when we head back out there next spring to tour the wildflowers and hear the birds, that much more of their home will be secure.

Your gifts help us sink roots deeper into a passion for local foods and clean water. Our partners at the Berggren Farm produced fresh vegetables and poultry for local markets and schools on land nourished by the McKenzie River. And within the Duncan Island protected area, Joy and David Pippenger of Whiskey Creek Organics filled a CSA and grocers’ shelves with organic fruits and vegetables. Right alongside a rich maze of Siuslaw River estuary channels that nurture young coho salmon, crabs, and shrimp.

If you join us at Green Island for the next Living River Celebration – mark your calendars for June 28, 2014! – you’ll do so over a new crossing that is better both for our access and for the native fish that thrive there. And you’ll see new connections between the old McKenzie and the new Willamette channels.

Gifts from people like you make that happen as well.

And in just another month or two, we expect to see a big announcement from the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Oregon Chub will be proposed for de-listing from the Endangered Species Act. This would be the first time ever that a listed freshwater fish has made such a recovery in the United States.

And when you make a donation to the McKenzie River Trust, you’ll have a hand in it. Places like McKenzie Oxbow and Big Island – places that were protected in years past thanks to the generosity of people just like you – have become havens for chub.

So you see, protected areas do make a difference.

And it’s your passion for making that difference that allows us to protect and care for special lands together.

As you celebrate your own passion for nature, please consider making a $100 donation to the McKenzie River Trust today. Thank you so much for that consideration.

Special note

Your tax-deductible gift will be put to work right away, so please send it by December 31.

Give now through our secure online server.

If you’d like to send a check, please make it out to McKenzie River Trust and send to:

McKenzie River Trust
1245 Pearl St
Eugene, OR 97401

Or phone in your gift to 541-345-2799.

McMenamins Friends and Family Night

McMenamins Friends & Family Night
Tuesday, September 24 from 5-11pm

McMenamins North Bank – 22 Club Road in Eugene
Live music by Neil Bjorklund and Friends at 8pm

Join us for dinner, brew, and live music at McMenamins North Bank, 22 Club Road in Eugene, on Tuesday, September 24th. 50% of all the night’s sales will be donated to the McKenzie River Trust! Bring your friends and family and join us for a wonderful evening along the Willamette River.

The McKenzie River Trust protects and cares for special lands and the rivers that flow through them in western Oregon. Working along the Willamette, the McKenzie, and throughout six other watersheds in our region, the McKenzie River Trust is committed to a future in which intact, functioning ecosystems provide clean water, abundant fish and wildlife, and productive natural landscapes throughout western Oregon. Click here to make a tax-deductible donation to the McKenzie River Trust.

Protect your habitat at home and along the rivers you love

Here’s a special offer you don’t want to miss.

Local design/remodeling company Neil Kelly is partnering with Clean Energy Works Oregon to offer FREE home energy audits and solar evaluations. And Neil Kelly will donate $100 to the McKenzie River Trust for everyone who signs up.

Here’s how it works:

1. Apply: Click here to fill out a brief form on the Clean Energy Works Oregon website, and get going right away.

2. Assess: A representative from Neil Kelly will contact you to schedule your free home energy assessment. Then MRT receives a donation of $100 for every assessment completed!

3. Transform: Neil Kelly will walk you through your options for saving money and making your home more comfortable with improved insulation, duct sealing, upgraded windows, solar energy and more. There is no obligation to buy.

So go ahead, give $100 without spending a penny!

Sign up for your FREE HOME ENERGY AUDIT now:
Visit http://my.cleanenergyworksoregon.org/apply/?referral_code=CNNLKMRT

Sign up for your FREE SOLAR EVALUATION now:
Visit http://www.neilkelly.com/
Enter code: McKenzieRiver

New boot scrubbing kiosk installed at the Coyote Spencer Wetlands

Ryan Ruggiero, Land Protection Manager for the McKenzie River Trust, and Kolton Baldree, the Walton Eagle Scout who build the new boot scrubbing kiosk at the Coyote Spencer Wetlands.

Eagle Scout completes volunteer service project on
Coyote Spencer Wetlands

Kolton and his dad and brother finalize the installation of the kiosk.


Kolton Baldree of Walton, a sophomore at Elmira High School, recently completed his community service project for his Eagle Scout ranking, the highest ranking attainable in the Boy Scouting program. Kolton constructed a boot scrubbing kiosk at the Coyote Spencer Wetlands (CSW), a botanically rich landscape acquired by the McKenzie River Trust in 2012. In order to help limit weeds on the property, the boot scrubber will enable site managers, conservation partners, and public tour participants to scrub weed seeds from their footwear as they walk onto the site.

A community member donated the materials for the project, and Kolton has been working on it for the past few months. On Wednesday, Kolton completed the installation of the interpretive sign that teaches people the value of cleaning their shoes and the importance of doing so on a property like the Coyote Spencer Wetlands.

The CSW contains over 300 species of plants, more than half of which are native and several of which are very rare, including suncups, federally-endangered Bradshaw’s lomatium, Hitchcock’s blue-eyed grass, and thin-leaved peavine. MRT is managing the property for these and other native plant species.

Historically, the property was grazed, and several pasture grasses, notably meadow foxtail, now dominate the meadow areas. MRT is working to reverse the dominance of introduced species through annual mowing and other measures. One factor that will continue to influence how healthy native plant communities are in the meadow areas is the introduction of weed seed. More weeds means less light, water, and soil nutrients will be available for native species.

The boot scrubbing kiosk will help reduce the weed seed being brought into the site over time, increasing the chances that the CSW will be a haven for native plant species and the wildlife species that depend on them.

On behalf of the McKenzie River Trust board, staff, partners and supporters – A huge thanks to Kolton for making this project happen, for contributing something of tremendous value to the property’s conservation value, and for building the Trust’s first-ever boot scrubbing kiosk!

If you’d like to see the new kiosk, join us on our upcoming Bird Tour of the Coyote Spencer Wetlands on Saturday, May 4th or Native Plant Tour on Saturday, May 11th.

Matching Gift Challenge Now Through April 30

Mountain Rose Herbs offers $5,000 Gift Challenge

Mountain Rose Herbs volunteering on Green Island. Photo by Brandi Ferguson.


We have exciting news to share: we’re kicking off a month-long Matching Gift Challenge offered by our friends at Mountain Rose Herbs.

There’s no better time to give. From April 1st through 30th, every dollar you donate to the McKenzie River Trust will be matched dollar for dollar up to $5,000 by Mountain Rose Herbs! Your donation today will help protect and care for our surrounding lands and rivers for future generations of Oregonians.

And we’ve got another very special offer this month: if you donate $100 or more, you’ll receive our new MRT Water Bottle. It’s clear so you can see the pristine McKenzie River water inside!

Double Your Impact Now!

Don’t miss out on this limited opportunity to have your gift DOUBLED by
Mountain Rose Herbs!

Click here to donate now!

Or mail a check to:
McKenzie River Trust
1245 Pearl St
Eugene, OR 97401

Thank you for your support of the McKenzie River Trust! You’re helping to protect and care for the lands that cradle our rivers and streams. What better way to show you love the special places that surround us.

Thankful for… you!

Giving Thanks

A few reasons why we are thankful this season…

Joe Moll, Executive Director
I’m thankful for waterfowl at sunrise, fresh blueberries for a mid-morning snack, an afternoon nap beneath gold quaking aspen, an evening hatch on the river, and an owl’s call at lights-out, each and every day.

Charlie Ward, Board President
I am most thankful this year and throughout my long association with MRT for the collaborative approach this organization takes to accomplish its work. People from varied backgrounds, income levels, and political views working together to move us to a more sustainable landscape. How refreshing on the heals of this election season!

Jodi Lemmer, Land Steward
My job involves land restoration, care, respect for, and continued maintenance, of our conserved lands. I’m thankful that every day I get to interact with these special lands and the very special people who share this stewardship ethic and help us carry out our mission.

Ryan Ruggiero, Land Protection Manager
Landowners who are dedicated to their land and its future compel me to bring my best effort to my work each day. I am continually inspired that they can look both backward and forward and consider the legacy they want to leave for both past and future generations. It is truly humbling to be a part of something with such endurance.

Chris Vogel, Green Island Project Manager
The Willamette Valley floodplain is always active. I am thankful to work in a setting where I regularly witness gravel bar formations, seasonal flooding, and migrations of fish and wildlife. Green Island looks different to me every time I set foot on the ground, and MRT continues to grow our support and partnerships. Together, we have great opportunities to strengthen the Green Island project.

Brandi Ferguson, Development Manager
From volunteers to local businesses, from fly fisherman to birders, colleagues and partners to our very committed supporters – when I come to work each day I am surrounded by a community of individuals who inspire me. People that are passionate about the same things I am, helping to preserve the remarkable landscapes and waterways that surround us. I was born here. I used to take living here for granted, but I have come to realize how fortunate I truly am.

Liz Lawrence, Director of Resources
As I bike to work each day beside the rushing waters of our valley’s namesake river, I’m often reminded that we live in one of the most amazing places on the planet. I’m grateful to all of you who join us on the ground to see firsthand how your donations help protect the lands and waters that nourish our communities.

Nicole Nielsen-Pincus, Willamette Program Manager
I am continually moved by the dedication and land ethic of the private landowners we get to work with at the McKenzie River Trust. I am so thankful for the trust and relationships we have formed with these unique people.

Dane Moeggenberg, Stewardship Technician
I am thankful that there is an organization devoted to the protection of lands and rivers in Western Oregon. I am thankful that I am physically able to perform my stewardship duties. I am thankful for the people that I work with, the knowledge I am gaining, and the network of support in the area.

Most of all, we are thankful for you!

Your support is critical to protect and care for special lands in our region.

If you are on our mailing list, you will soon receive a letter asking for your donation. Inside the envelope, you will also find a small token of our appreciation. To provide a head-start to our year-end fundraising campaign, you can GIVE NOW through our secure online server.

We are thankful to have supporters who are so committed to our local land conservation work. We couldn’t do it without you. Thank you!