The Attleboro Land Trust has received a gift of 12 acres of land on Morse Avenue in Attleboro. The land was donated by Morse Avenue resident Ted Charron and other members of the Charron family. It was farmed by Ted’s parents and grandparents, and it is still used for the production of hay.
The donated land will be permanently conserved as the Charron Farm Preserve. The land trust plans to complete a trail beginning at Morse Avenue, crossing some wetlands, going around the hayfields, and connecting to an adjacent preserve, the 28-acre Shaw-Denham Memorial Forest. The Charron Farm Preserve will not be open to the public until this trail is finished, which may take a year, as boardwalks will be required. Completion of the new trail will also mean that the Shaw-Denham Memorial Forest will for the first time be open to the public, as it has been landlocked from the time it was donated to the land trust by the Denham family in 2013 until now.
Ted Charron, an artist, has had a long association with the Attleboro Land Trust, having served on its board from 1997 to 1999, edited its newsletter, and designed its logo. Ted knows every inch of the donated land and has observed how it serves as habitat for a variety of wild animals. Guaranteeing that the land will be forever protected has long been his goal.
This acquisition brings the total number of acres owned by the Attleboro Land Trust to 504. Conservation restrictions are held on an additional 236 acres.
On Wednesday, March 1, at 7:00 pm, the public is invited to attend a program that will provide an introduction to the land conservation work of the Attleboro Land Trust.
The program will give some background on the founding of the non-profit organization in 1990, describe the various public walking trails available on its 492 acres of conservation land, and explain how citizens can get involved to help maintain trails, save more land, and ensure that the organization continues to thrive.
The meeting will be held in the Balfour Room at the Attleboro Public Library, 74 North Main Street, Attleboro.
Some volunteers serve as site stewards by “adopting” one of the Attleboro Land Trust nature preserves, individually or with a group, such as a group of neighbors, church group, youth group, or fraternal organization. The duties of a site steward are to:
- Walk the property on a regular basis
- Pick up litter
- Report vandalism
- Help with routine trail maintenance
- Assist with special projects
Volunteers are also needed to help with educational outreach, fundraising, social media, real estate transactions, boundary monitoring, and event planning.
For more information, contact Charlie Adler by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 508-223-3060 ext. 4.
The Attleboro Land Trust has partnered with Wildlands Trust, a regional land trust based in Plymouth, Massachusetts, to ensure the continued preservation of land that has been under the stewardship of Crystal Spring, a spiritually-oriented ecology center in Plainville, since 1991. Until recently, Crystal Spring was a vital center for learning and practicing ecological pursuits such as organic gardening. Sadly, the center is now closed and a 6-acre portion of the land containing residential buildings and meeting spaces has been sold.
While Crystal Spring has closed its doors, the vision of the Dominican Sisters who founded the center was that most of the land would remain in its natural state as forested upland, and they made sure that the necessary protections would be in place before they left. In 2008 Wildlands Trust agreed to play a role in this plan by holding a legally-enforceable conservation restriction on the vacant portion of the property. Last year, Wildlands Trust transferred the responsibility for that conservation restriction, which protects 36 acres, to the Attleboro Land Trust. Soon, the Dominican Sisters will convey ownership of the 36 acres to Wildlands Trust.
Once that final step is completed, Wildlands Trust will assume an expanded role as as owner and manager of the property and its hiking trails, which will be open to the public. The ALT will carry the ongoing responsibility for monitoring the condition of the property on an annual basis, and making sure that the terms of the conservation restriction are observed.
The completion of this agreement with Wildlands Trust brings the total area of conservation land protected by the Attleboro Land Trust up to 728 acres.
On Saturday, July 24, the public is invited to a new nature preserve to be opened by the Attleboro Land Trust. The 14-acre Joseph and Margaret O’Donnell Nature Preserve is located on Bishop Street. A ribbon-cutting ceremony will begin at 10:00 am to thank Dr. Robert B. O’Donnell, who donated the land in memory of his parents. Attendees should park and gather in the Finberg Field parking lot on Bishop Street next to the preserve.
After the formal ceremony, Evan Foster will lead a guided walk of a new 0.7 mile trail which leads through red maple and pine forests and past wetlands to a stand of beech and birch trees. The opening of the O’Donnell Preserve and trail is one of several projects completed by Foster during a seven-month term of service with the land trust under the TerraCorps program, which is affiliated with AmeriCorps. The project included photographic and GPS documentation of the baseline condition of the property, a property management plan, and a trail map generated using a digital geographic mapping system that Foster built for the land trust.
Rain date for the event is Sunday, July 25, at 1:00 pm. Event updates will be posted on this website.
June 9th at the Deborah and Roger Richardson Nature Preserve was a day for education, recreation, and celebration as more than 200 visitors participated in walks, talks, games, geocaching, and expressing appreciation to those who made it all possible.
Following acquisition of the property in June, 2016, the event was two years in the making. New trails have been marked and boardwalks have been installed. Signage has been put up to recognize and thank the major donors. Interpretive panels describe the site’s history, flora, and fauna. A new split rail fence marks the west edge of the property. The 18th century Barrows House has a new coat of paint and is enhanced with historically-appropriate plantings. Years of untamed growth have been removed to reveal an expansive lawn dubbed The Glen. More overgrowth has been removed to reveal hardy perennials not tended for decades in Deborah’s Garden.
Visitors participated in various guided walks–viewing vernal pools, wetlands, fields, forests, gardens, and foundations of farm outbuildings. Children petted a visiting herd of alpacas and went on a nature scavenger hunt. Local residents interested in the history of the site could hear a historical narrative by Bill Lewis and then view the evidence with their own eyes. Geocachers sought their own treasures. And those with energy to burn could circle the trails in either low or high gear.
The weather could not have been better–showing the preserve in a perfect light.
Read more about this event in an article published in The Sun Chronicle.
On June 29, the Attleboro Land Trust received 36 acres of conservation land as a gift from Donald DesVergnes, Roger G. DesVergnes, and Marette & Sons, Inc. The land, to be named the DesVergnes Family Nature Preserve, is in two parcels located east of Lindsey Street. The larger of the two parcels (26 acres) has frontage on Lindsey Street and consists of undeveloped land between residential areas on Roadway A, Roadway B, and Colt’s Way. The smaller parcel (10 acres) lies between a residential area on Kennedy Drive and the Mansfield line. A utility easement allows power lines to cross the parcel. Future plans for the property include walking trails on the larger parcel off Lindsey Street. We are grateful to the DesVergnes family for this generous gift, which brings the total acreage protected by the Attleboro Land Trust in the city to 690 acres (490 owned and 200 under conservation restrictions which we hold).