JACKSON, Wyo. — A new interpretive sign by artist Katie Christiansen at the corner of Flat Creek Drive and Snow King Avenue tells the story of the Karns Meadow wetland.
“Nestled within Jackson’s bustling valley floor and between habitat-rich hillsides, Karns Meadow is a small but mighty wild area set aside for ecosystem health,” the sign reads.
Constructed in 2011, the stormwater treatment ponds on the east side of the meadow capture and treat stormwater runoff from roughly 27% of the town of Jackson, which carries sediment, salts, metals, hydrocarbons, and other pollutants with it. After polluted water moves through the wetland, about 90% of contaminants have been stripped away, significantly improving the water quality of the runoff that enters Flat Creek.
With a grant from the Wyoming Department of Agriculture, a local group including Teton Conservation District, the Town of Jackson, and the Jackson Hole Land Trust set out to highlight the 40-acre treatment wetland hidden in plain sight in the center of town.
“The fact that these types of projects were envisioned over a decade ago is a testament to Jackson’s commitment to the ecological resources and habitat that define our region and community character,” said Floren Poliseo, Director of Public Works for the Town of Jackson.
Artist and naturalist Katie Christiansen was selected to create the captivating sign. Christiansen specializes in creating artful interpretive installations in parks and protected areas across the region. “I hope that the final installation, by beautifully conveying both the ecological and community values of the park, will meaningfully connect people with and encourage continued stewardship of the natural world right before them,” said Christiansen.
A ribbon cutting ceremony and remarks about the new installation from Mayor Hailey Morton Levinson, the Town of Jackson and Teton Conservation District staff will take place this Wednesday Dec. 8 at 2 p.m.