Conservation Campaign Kicks Off in Machias to Preserve Land Along Two Rivers 

A major conservation effort is underway in Washington County to conserve two large pieces of property. The community members leading the way kicked off what they’re calling The Two Rivers Campaign in Machias on Thursday. “It’s a campaign to protect over 1,000 acres and 4 1/2 miles of river frontage here in the Machias Valley,” explained Tom Boutureira, the Executive Director of Downeast Coastal Conservancy.This includes land parcels along the Machias River and Middle River, which are connected by the Down East Sunrise Trail. That trail and those rivers are used for recreation, and these community members want to keep it that way and even encourage more people to enjoy it all.”One of the great fears that folks have is that somebody will come along and buy a big chunk of land and then put up no trespassing signs and this is not what it’s about. This is trespass. We want you to be there, we want you to use the property,” said Betsy Fitzgerald, Washington County Manager and a member of the Two Rivers Community Committee.In this campaign the Downeast Coastal Conservancy and the Two Rivers Community Committee have a goal of raising $1.9 million to acquire the properties and also manage them in perpetuity, according to Boutureira.They know that if they’re the stewards of the land, it will be accessible to anyone who wants to use it. “This is really an opportunity for educational and recreational programming right here in our Backyard,” said Boutureira.And they hope to make sure that space will continue to be used for those purposes for generations to come.If you’d like to learn more or donate to the campaign, visit