By Thomas Nelson, firstname.lastname@example.org
The estate of Robert James Waller has donated $25,000 to the Tosanak Cabin Fund Drive at the Tosanak Recreation Area.
Waller, author of the best-selling novel “The Bridges of Madison County,” was born and raised in Rockford.
In “Just Beyond the Firelight,” Waller chronicles his 1986 canoe trip down the Shell Rock River with a chapter entitled “Going Soft Upon the Land and Down the Rivers”, according to press release from Floyd County Conservation.
The cabin will be built on a ridge overlooking the Shell Rock River. The cabin, which will have log siding, is set to be built near a now defunct pool filled with sand near the river.
Joel Cannon, chairman of the Tosanak Cabin Fundraising Committee, said in press release, “We are very excited to receive this substantial gift for our Cabin Project.”
The $25,000 donation has been in the works for about a month, Cannon said.
“When the cabin fundraising started we sent the information down to his wife,” Cannon said.
Floyd County Conservation’s goal is to raise $120,000 to construct a modern cabin at the Tosanak Recreation Area.
Currently they are about 25 percent through the fundraising efforts, Cannon said.
“We welcome all donations large and small. This project will greatly enhance the Tosanak Recreation Area and will be a real plus for the Rudd, Rockford, Marble Rock area and all of Floyd County” Cannon further stated.
In the 17 counties of Northeast Iowa, only two have cabins from their county conservation boards. During the Tosanak Recreation Area open house Saturday, May 6, the new cabin was advertised to the public during a scavenger hunt.
“Waller and his wife have been big supporters of the Fossil & Prairie Conservation Foundation and the Floyd County Conservation Board for many years,” said Cannon. “We are very grateful and appreciative of their previous support as well as the generous current donation.”
The 1,100-square-foot cabin is set to have three bedrooms and two bathrooms, and will be handicapped-accessible.
“This was a very, very nice donation by the Waller Estate,” Cannon said. “We’re still taking donations from private individuals.”
This is a big step forward, Cannon said.
Anyone interested in donating to the Floyd County Conservation Board can contact the Floyd County Conservation Office at 641-756-3490.
Donations can be made payable to Fossil & Prairie Conservation Fund. Contributions can be sent to: Floyd County Conservation, Box 495 Rockford, Iowa 50468 and are Tax Deductible.