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Land Conservation News 

Rockport Woodlot Gifted to Greenbelt

On June 30th, Greenbelt acquired a 3-acre woodlot in the Sawmill Brook watershed, beyond the end of Lane’s Farm Way, in Rockport.  A gift of the Frost family, the woodlot expands an area of existing conserved land that features an extensive trail network and classic Cape Ann granite, glacial erratics, and pitch pine.


Land Stewardship Update

Osprey Program Update
We are now deep into the 2017 Osprey nesting season and can report it will be another strong showing for Osprey north of Boston.
A final count of nesting pairs is not yet available, but it looks as if the population will be stable or increased from last year. We also confirmed a new nest in Boxford at Greenbelt’s Carter Fields Reservation (shown), the first and only nest north of Boston in a tree!

We have been on several chick banding outings and hope to end up banding 20-25 chicks before the season is over. Our satellite-tagged 3-year old male Osprey, Flow, has had quite a time up north, ranging from just north of Boston all the way to southern Maine, where he has been situated for the past month or so. It does not appear that he will settle on a nest this year. Learn more about Greenbelt’s Osprey program.

Farewell to Christine Viola

Christine Viola, our AmeriCorps Land Stewardship Coordinator, served both Greenbelt and the Town of Ipswich Open Space Committee during her 11-month tenure. With Greenbelt, Christine initiated a Kestrel nest box program, worked on the Osprey Program and Piping Plover project, assisted with all aspects of conservation restriction monitoring, worked closely with Greenbelt's GIS manager to create many new maps, and so much more.

In Ipswich, Christine assisted with conservation restriction monitoring, worked with Russ Cohen to remove a patch of invasive species on Strawberry Hill and replanted the area with native edible species, and created an online web map of all the public trails in the Town of Ipswich, making them easier to find and more visible to the public. Thank you Christine! We wish you continued professional success.

Community Engagement

Long-time Member Wins Tower Garden Raffle

Kathy Ricker, a member of Greenbelt for six years, is the winner of our first Tower Garden raffle.  The Tower Garden is a vertical, hydroponic garden system and Greenbelt's unit has been producing a bounty of crops outside our headquarters building this summer.
Ricker, who loves the unspoiled areas of Essex County and enjoys visiting the Cox Reservation, qualified for the raffle by upgrading her Greenbelt membership this year.


Ricker said she loves Greenbelt’s annual “Art in the Barn,” and updates on our Osprey program.  She is looking forward to enjoying Greenbelt’s newest property in Hamilton, the John J. Donovan Reservation. 


The second Tower Garden raffle will take place this December, for any new or upgrading members July through December.


Tower Garden Update from Rockport's Green Team

The Tower Garden donated to the Rockport Schools by Greenbelt was also very productive.  With limited space inside its new greenhouse, the Rockport Middle/High school Green Team had the task of assembling and planting the Tower Garden. They planted a variety of vegetables - lettuce, kale, arugula, chard and tomatoes.

The  students on the Green Team checked the water reservoir a couple of times a week and added nutrients as needed. In two months, the Green Team harvested a bounty of greens and delivered it to the school's cafeteria, where they were used in the school salads for a couple of days.  Before school was out, the Green Team was harvesting sweet, delicious red tomatoes. During the summer vacation, Green Team members have been taking turns going into the greenhouse to keep the water reservoir full and the nutrients at the correct levels.


Strong Turnout at "Run for the Hills Trail Run"

Greenbelt’s “10th Annual Run for the Hills 5K and 10K Trail Race” through the beautiful wooded hills of the Pingree Reservation in Hamilton drew 125 runners on July 15th.

Patrick Caron, of Needham, literally "ran away" with the 10K race finishing with a first-place time of 36:46.  Greenbelt staff member Eric Mortensen finished fourth in the 10K race.  Eric is a Project Manager in our Conservation Department and an avid trail runner.  Former Greenbelt Board Member Doug DeAngelis, of Ipswich, took the 5K with a time of 19:59.

Greenbelt’s next trail run is our 5.3 Mile Loop Through Cox Reservation to Conomo Point on August 26thRegister Online. Both races are a part of the new Brooks-New England Running Company Road & Trail Series.

Have Fun with Us!

Willowdale State Forest Exploration

August 17, 9:30-11:30am Hamilton

Richard Lombard leads this invigorating weekday hike in historic woods along the Ipswich River with Greenbelt and the Y Connections hiking club. FREE. RSVP. 


5.3 Mile Cox to Conomo
All-Terrain Race

August 26, 9:00am start
Cox Reservation, Essex
. Register online

* Part of the 2017 Brooks-New England Running Co. Road &Trail Series.


3rd Annual
Tour de Greenbelt

Cycle for Land Conservation

September 16, 9:00am start
Cox Reservation, Essex

All level riders welcome.
25- and 50-mile options pass scenic conservation corridors.
Pre-register and save.

Beverly Commons Expedition

September 21, 9:30-11:30am Beverly

Observe the change of seasons in the woods with leader Ann Mahoney. Partner event with Y Connections Hiking Club.  FREE. RSVP. 

The Fundamentals of Conservation Restriction Stewardship

September 21, 5:00-7:30pm
Cox Reservation Barn, Essex

Workshop for municipal and volunteer CR managers.


Thank you for your interest in local land conservation 

Greenbelt | Essex County's Land Trust 
82 Eastern Avenue Essex, Massachusetts 01929

Phone: 978.768.7241 | www.ecga.org | Email: ecga@ecga.org
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