In 2010, the Kenton County Conservation District was awarded a grant from the Kentucky Heritage Land Conservation Fund Board (KHLCFB) to purchase 204 acres of land in southern Kenton County near Morning View. In 2014, an additional 20 acres of land along the Licking River, the former Dunn/Endress property, was added to the Morning View Heritage Area through a grant from the KHLCFB.
The KHLCFB grant included funds to acquire the land as well as to assist with land restoration and making the area accessible for compatible public uses such as hiking, bird watching, environmental study and research. The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service also dedicated funds to the project.
This is the first project funded by the KHLCFB in Kenton County. The property will be managed to protect and restore the land. Biological and archaeological inventories were completed in early 2014. This work was done to ensure that natural resources and cultural resources are not disturbed by habitat restoration work or installation of parking facilities and trails that will allow visitors on the site. Conservation, Forest Stewardship and Wildlife Habitat Plans will also be developed.
Although habitat restoration and protection are the primary goals of this project, the property is open for compatible public uses, including hiking and educational programs.
The Morning View Heritage Area (MVHA) is opened to the public seven days a week from dawn ’til dusk. While the property is opened to the public, some areas may be restricted based on the sensitivity of plants or animals that are being protected, or for safety reasons. See kiosk at the parking area for rules and open areas.
Activities that are permitted include:
The land is protected by a Conservation Easement held by the Commonwealth of Kentucky. That easement is a condition of accepting the grant funds for the purchase of the property and outlines uses that cannot be permitted on the land.
KHLCFB was established by the 1994 Kentucky Legislature and is administered by a 12-member board. The board’s mission is to award funding for preserving and conserving natural areas that possess unique features such as:
Land is acquired only from willing sellers. The fund is supported by the state portion of the unmined minerals tax, environmental fines, the $10 additional fee to purchase a Kentucky Nature License Plate, and interest on the fund’s assets. Grants can be awarded to local governments, state colleges and universities, and specified state agencies to acquire and protect areas of natural significance.