Autumn in the North Cemetery.

Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?

These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.

Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...

...seems to be working so far

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Celebrate Earth Day: Volunteer at a trail near you!

April traditionally brings on the first of several trail volunteer opportunities and this year is no different. Celebrate Earth Day, April 21st, by volunteering at one of several area trail projects. Donations and support for this volunteer trail day in the form of drinking water and food for lunch are welcome. Youth groups, families, service organizations are all welcome to participate. Pre registration is requested to allow for proper planning of projects, logistical support and to maximize the work organization. The various contact names and emails are listed below.

The Sturbridge Trail Committee:   Trail locator sign post installation at Heins Farm.  Trail locator posts need to be installed that will be marked with a special number, much like a street address, that can be referenced if there is an emergency on the trail.  The public safety office will have these locator numbers with specific direction so dispatchers can quickly direct the appropriate response.

Arbutus Park Trail Improvements on Leadmine Mt property.  Tractors and rakes needed to spread fine gravel and clear trail of winter debris.  Additional help needed to demolish and remove 2 old unneeded trail bridges.

The Holland Trail Committee: Preparing the Holland / Brimfield Connector trail for final surfacing. Activities will include grading, raking, shoveling, brush cutting, culvert clearing, and litter removal.

The Brimfield Trail Committee: 5K trail race cleanup volunteers will inspect and help clean up and mark the 5K trail race set for the following Saturday.

“Curtis Island” Loop trail improvements and wildlife habitat creation. Help Brimfield Boy Scout Eric Costa work on his Eagle Scout project.  Projects include trail maintenance and improvement as well as clearing and stacking bush from the winter storm into piles, and a general cleanup of a rough mowed field for wildlife habitat.

The Southbridge Trail Committee: Shoulder stabilization and trail tread improvements to a section of the Westville Community trail.

U S Army Corps of Engineers: Lake Shoreline & River trail Cleanup: Much tornado debris was deposited in the waters of the East Brimfield Lake and the area’s first nationally designated Recreation Water trail, the Quinebaug River.  Boats and canoes are needed to patrol the shoreline and river trail to pick up any remaining debris.

Reforestation & stream bank stabilization: A combined total of over 500 acres of project upland and river side trees were totally destroyed by the tornado.  Forest recovery and logging operations have started, and there is need to replant these areas with new tree seedlings.  Help needed to plant 600 tree seedlings and spread 100 cubic yards of wood chips.

Meeting locations and contact information to register:

Sturbridge Trail Committee: Heins Farm Parking lot, 197 Leadmine Rd and  
The OSV Access Rd trail head parking lot, 10 Old Sturbridge Village Rd
To register: email: Randy Redetzke at or call 508-347-6340
Brimfield Trail Committee: 207 Five Bridge Rd., Trail Head parking lot
To register: email: Tony Bys at:   or call: 413-563-3564

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers: 24 Riverview Ave, Fiskdale Ma.
To register: email:  call: 508-347-3705

Holland Trail Committee: Quinebaug River Trail Head parking lot, Pond Bridge Rd.
To register: email Dick Haller at  or call: 413 245-7745

Southbridge Trail Committee: Westville Lake Project Office, 200 Marjorie Lane,
To register: email Scott Benoit at, or email:  or call: 508-347-3705

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