Who owns Woodland Lake Park?

The answer is, as of Aug. 6, the Town of Pinetop-Lakeside does. Signing the Quit Claim Deed received from the Albuquerque Land Office of the U.S. Forest Service, Mayor Stephanie Irwin affixed her signature to the document making it 100 percent official. Town Manager Keith Johnson opened escrow on the 107.88 acres, the developed footprint of the park, on April 3 after the town council unanimously approved the acceptance of the Donation Agreement between the town and the Peter and Nancy Salter Family Foundation, Inc. Due to COVID-19 the Salters were unable to be present at that meeting. Johnson said that a more formal recognition for the Salters, the Save Our Park group and the many other donors and partners who have worked tirelessly towards making the purchase of the park a reality will be forthcoming. Since 1987 it has been a goal of the town and Save Our Park to purchase Woodland Lake Park for the community. It has been called the Crown Jewel of Pinetop-Lakeside as it is a key recreation spot for locals and visitors. Johnson said that efforts to purchase the remainder of the park’s 400 plus acres will continue.

Barbara Bruce is a reporter for the White Mountain Independent, covering arts and entertainment on the Mountain and the Pinetop-Lakeside town government.

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