This is a detailed list of projects (PDF) funded by this year’s round of Keystone Historic Preservation Grants. The Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission (PHMC) has awarded $2.58 million in Keystone Historic Preservation grants to help historical and heritage organizations, museums, and local governments in 21 counties. The commission awarded 48 grants selected from 101 […]
Officials in Upper Salford Township recently celebrated the opening of the Park to Perkiomen Trail Connector. They cut the ribbon on the 1.3-mile trail earlier this month. “It’s wonderful to go from imagination to vision to plans,” said Ted Poatsy, Upper Salford Township Supervisor, at the ribbon cutting. “We’re so happy that we have an asset, […]
Natural Lands announced the preservation of approximately 106 acres in New Garden Township, Chester County. The land, formerly the site of the Loch Nairn Golf Club, was purchased by the Township for use as a passive-recreation park, which is slated to open to the public in 2024. Conversion of the land from a golf course […]
Malvern Borough in Chester County recently cut the ribbon on improvements at Horace J. Quann Park. The park, described by Chester County Commissioners as a treasured gem for the community, has an updated basketball court, baseball field, sidewalk, fencing, and trees. The Malvern Environmental Advisory Council also added a rain garden to the park to […]
On my first day, I was taken aback when I realized that this oasis existed. To say that I was genuinely surprised would be an understatement. I could not believe that Philadelphia has this large space which so many residents were unaware of. I wanted to get the word out, to get people to come to Awbury and see the great things that the arboretum offers. In my first few months there, every day that I came to work I would see something different. Whether it was a homeschool class participating in an activity outside, a new artist gallery in the Cope House, or exploring a new part of Awbury, there was always something new.
Back when my sons were younger and playing Connie Mack and American Legion Baseball, I spent nearly every evening – most of spring, all of summer, and a good way into fall – at the park, sitting in the snack stand of the baseball field. The park is my favorite place to be deep in the fall, when the leaves have changed and everything is all reds and golds and oranges.
In my time at High School Park, I have seen its wildlife diversity and habitat value markedly increase because of this work. Resident birders have reported almost four times the amount of migratory birds using the park now. Fox have been seen roaming the meadow trails and resident hawks are a near-constant presence. This past spring, I spotted a bald eagle in the creek while walking my dog. All this points to greater diversity and better stormwater management in our community.
For a quarter-century, I have been censusing the birds that nest and breed in a 40-acre woods in the Pennypack Preserve. On eight mornings at the end of May and beginning of June, I have awoken at the crack of dawn, wolfed down a quick snack, power-walked 20 minutes to the tract, and then begun censusing. For the next three hours and ten minutes, I have scanned the trees with my binoculars and pricked up my ears to catch the slightest hint of birdsong.
My friends and family frequently ride the trail into Martic and Conestoga townships. Eventually the trail will expand east toward Atglen and west toward Manor Township. My brother Jeff and I ride the trail together, and in the winter months we use the trail to cross-country ski and snowshoe. Every year we see an increase in summer and winter use of the trail. My wife and daughters use the trail on foot as well as wheels, and our family dogs enjoy the trail as much as we do!
When Ambrose and I met, it was such a joy to find out how much he liked being in nature. He started to join the hikes and together we found new areas of Fairmount Park to explore. Now, for meditation hikes, he leads the hike portion. It has been great to collaborate with him in that project and also in life (we recently got married at Valley Green Inn). For us, the parks continue to be a source of rejuvenation: a way for us to connect with nature, and with each other.
My wife Donna and I have been enjoying the beautiful scenery and tranquility of Trexler Preserve in Lehigh County for many years. The numerous walking and hiking trails following the high ridges and along the Jordan Creek are a wonderful place to enjoy nature and provide a good workout, especially with your dog!
I’ve run in a lot of places all over the world, and this trail, right along the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia, is one of the nicest places to run. It offers many benefits for me and for everybody else in my running club. In fact, it is really a central part of my life in Philadelphia and is a big part of what keeps me happy.
The Schuylkill River, its trail, and all of the tributaries that feed it have been a part of my everyday life for as long as I can remember. As a child, I spent my days on and along the river with my mother and father. Somewhere along the line of my hiking, biking, fishing, swimming, kayaking, and just about anything else you can imagine, I fell in love with the trail and river, and all that they have to offer.
New Hanover Community Park happens to be my favorite park in the township. It offers so many activities and amenities, including basketball, baseball, Frisbee golf, hockey, a walking trail, and a fenced-in playground. Dogs are allowed in the park on a leash, which enables me and my dog Max to enjoy the park.
One of the things I love most about the Pearl S. Buck House is that, impressive as it is, it doesn’t feel like a museum. It is a home: warm and welcoming. It brings to life the story of a talented, energetic, woman who saw injustice and didn’t turn away. Instead, she used her talent and energy to break through barriers and nurture understanding. I have always admired Ms. Buck, both as a writer and a humanitarian, but being in her home, seeing the objects that were part of her life, I see her as a human being.
The facilities at Rexroth Park were perfect for our organization’s needs. Volunteer non-profits like us depend on fundraising to maintain our programs at a minimal cost to participants. Rexroth not only supplies great fields for the kids, but also has a concession stand and pavilion that provides a source of income to help support our efforts. In addition, there is a youth-oriented playground, to the delight of our parents, which allows younger brothers and sisters to have some fun during practices in a safe environment.
Last summer our team hosted a class in Hoopes Park for the public and enjoyed some brunch items afterwards, which allowed everyone to spend time enjoying the park and getting to know each other. There are plenty of trees to cool us down and provide some much-needed shade on a humid summer day. We’ve seen that people really look forward to the chance to get out of their offices or homes and into a park for some fresh air and to be a little closer to nature, whether it be for yoga, running, biking, or other activities.
What happens when people neglect what they’ve built? At Housenick Park, people can watch it happen. The majesty of the seasons, combined with the impermanence of building materials, offers a four-season show with free admission. It’s my secret pleasure, a jewel of almost one hundred acres only five miles north of my home. Once the estate of Archibald Johnston, the city of Bethlehem’s first mayor, it’s now a public park in the heart of the Lehigh Valley.
This 111-acre park has three baseball fields, which provide ample space for egg hunts for toddlers through fourth graders. In addition, we are able to use the football fields for crafts, family-friendly games, face painting, and more. The park provides a lush and scenic background for photos with the Easter Bunny as well. Afterwards, kids enjoy time on the large playground that is suitable for small and big kids alike.
When our students leave Antietam Lake Park at the end of a day of service, they are tired, dirty, and newly inspired. They understand that places like Antietam can show to generation after generation the value of the natural world. Parks can help connect people to the natural spaces around them, and hopefully instill in people an understanding of the need for all of us to be better stewards of the planet we live on.