Advocates trying to save Camano Island beach from developers —

Advocates trying to save Camano Island beach from developers

By Dan Cassuto
KING 5

CAMANO ISLAND, Wash. -- A group of nature lovers is scrambling to save a cove of beautiful beach and turn it into a free public park before private developers snatch it up.

The land is called Barnum Point, and it's been owned by the Barnum and Stay families since the turn of the last century. Both families are now selling their land -- 100 acres of unspoiled, beach-front property with woods, fields and bluffs.

"It's just time," said Carolin Barnum, who runs a small bed and breakfast on the bluff overlooking the beach. "I'm getting older. I can't keep running the Inn."

Problem is they can't just give it away because one stretch of land is owned by a bank and in financial receivership.

That's why the Whidbey Camano Land Trust is trying to raise $300,000 by September 7 so they can buy it before the bank puts it on the open market.

Carolin's portion, including her Inn, will be for sale next year and will likely face a similar set of circumstances, according to Tom Eisenberg, who's working with the trust to attract donors.

Eisenberg worries the bank could sell it to developers to build houses or condos if the nature group can't raise the money.

"I'm not much for fundraising. But I don't mind it here, because the property speaks for itself," said Eisenberg.

Copyright 2016 KING

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