SYRACUSE — The Wawasee Area Conservancy Foundation purchased what has been known as the Searfoss Family Homestead in February; it is now known as WACF Between-The-Lakes. And while plans for the property are “still in the planning stages,” the first step in reutilization of the property took place Wednesday afternoon.
Dan McCulloch, with Don and Sons Excavating, operated the excavator with its tyrannosaurus-type bucket, demolished the limestone-built home occupied for years by Robert and Lucille Searfoss and their family. In just over an hour, the home was reduced to rubble. A utility shed was also demolished.
The 2,194-square-foot home was built in 1952. A 1,372-square-foot detached garage will remain.
The approximately seven-acre property is located east of the Wawasee-to-Syracuse Lake main channel and across the road from the Channel Marker Restaurant on Pickwick Drive. It provides nearly 1,600 feet of water frontage adjoining Mud Lake wetlands, where WACF owns property on the north and east sides.
While plans for the property are still in the early stages, it is projected the property will include wetland and prairie restoration, shoreline enhancement, ecological demonstrations, canoe and kayak wetland adventures and community access to short trails.