Treehouse village has name familiar to Swanton

The new treehouse village in Oak Openings Preserve has a familiar Swanton name.

Linda Najarian Cannaley said her late husband, Jim, “would be smiling from ear to ear” about plans to build a treehouse village on property the Swanton couple once owned adjacent to Oak Openings Preserve Metropark, according to a Metroparks release.

Mrs. Cannaley sold the property to the park district several years ago to become part of the preserve. What no one knew at the time was that the property would become the Beach Ridge Area, home to a 12-mile mountain bike trail and soon the treehouse village and a FitPark, a fitness area.

Mrs. Cannaley is a Swanton-area native, former teacher and longtime real estate broker. Her husband, Jim Cannaley, was president and CEO of Woodsage Holdings in Holland, and played a key part in Swanton developments such as Turtle Creek.

Metroparks executive director Dave Zenk first approached Mrs. Cannaley about the treehouses, and “I instantly liked the idea,” she said. “How could you not.”

“Linda has been the driving force behind the treehouse village,” Zenk said. “Because of her, families will be able to rent cabins or tent platforms in the trees for overnight stays, or a large cabin with a canopy walk and crow’s nest for private events. These are the kinds of creative new experiences we think will bring people outdoors and put the Toledo area on the map as a destination for outdoor adventure.”

Mrs. Cannaley also made a gift of $750,000 to the treehouse village.