Land trusts provide benefits to everyone living in or visiting our local communities – from beautiful scenery and wildlife habitat to fresh water, flood mitigation, and recreational opportunities. The Mast General Store believes in the work of its local land trust partners and will donate 20% of the day’s sales on Saturday, June 3, in support of Congaree Land Trust, the conservancy serving Columbia.
“We began to see, as the owners of the Mast Store, how important the preservation of the wonderful scenery of our area was both to making it a special place to live and to bringing tourists who appreciated the natural wonders of the High Country,” shared John Cooper, chairman of the board of the Mast Store, when asked to comment on the store’s and his and Faye Cooper’s personal support of land trusts. “We didn’t know about ways to protect the beauty of the land and its environmental impact through conservation easements until we met Michael Leonard, a legend in North Carolina’s conservation efforts.”
Mast Store began hosting Land Trust Days in 2003 with donations of 20% of the day’s sales each year after, with the exception of 2020.
The Congaree Land Trust protects 88,000 acres of scenic lands, open spaces, farms, forests, and natural habitats across 14 counties in the Midlands of South Carolina. For 30 years, it has promoted voluntary conservation efforts that support the regional economy, promote healthy lifestyles, safeguard clean air and water sources, and improve the local quality of life.
“I am proud that we are continuing my parents’ tradition of supporting conservancies,” said Lisa Cooper, president of Mast Store and current board member of Blue Ridge Conservancy. “The work of these organizations is important for all of us today and in the future to make sure we have clean water, farmland, and to ensure biodiversity where we live.”
Stop by the Mast Store in Columbia on Saturday, June 3, to learn more about Congaree Land Trust and how land trusts work. Their website is CongareeLT.org.