Private Backer Could Help Protect Sipson’s Island in Orleans, MA

Boaters who ply the waters of Pleasant Bay in Chatham and Orleans, MA, are no doubt familiar with Sipson’s Island, which has been for sale.

Now the Friends of Pleasant Bay says it has found a private backer to help purchase the 24-acre island and preserve it for conservation, public space and recreational purposes (eg., swimming, hiking, camping). Under the agreement, the unnamed backer would purchase the island’s privately held parcels of land then sell them to the group over the next few years. The backer would also apparently donate some of the land, in exchange for being allowed a 2-acre parcel where a private home could be built. The Friends of Pleasant Bay hopes to use some of Orleans’ community preservation funds to buy the land, bolstered by private donations and a state grant.

If all goes according to plan, a Sipson’s Island Trust would be created to maintain trails and a dock at the north end of the island, in coordination with the town.