News & Events

In the News… 

Board members Cynthia Anger and Bryan Pines attended the Connecticut Land Conservation Council’s annual conference on March 19.  This is the second year that they have attended the conference.  It’s a great way to keep up to date on the latest land management practices and conservation efforts.

2015 Fall Walk a success!  Attended by over 60 people.

WLT Board members Bryan Pines and Chuck Pyne at RWA Woodbridge DayBoard members Bryan Pines and Chuck Pyne helped register participants and guide traffic safety throughout the RWA facility for the Hazardous Waste Disposal and Recycling Services’ Woodbridge Day.
Land Trust and Scouts working together!  Eagle Scout Brendan Purcell completed bridge construction on the Gregory Roberts’ trail while Girl Scout troop 60574 plans to help maintain our trails.

WLT Boy Scout     WLT Girl Scouts   

DEEP Commissioner Attends Woodbridge Land Trust Meeting

DEEP Commissioner meets with Land Trust Board member

Seated: Alex Klee, Comm. Robert Klee, Cathy Wick, Mike Raymond  Standing: Jim Urbano, Chris Keevil, Bryan Pines, Jack Thorpe, Phil Arnold

At its October meeting, the Board welcomed DEEP Commissioner Klee, who reviewed the recent history of the DEEP, explaining that the department was expanded in 2011 and is now dedicated to conserving, improving and protecting our natural resources and the environment, including increasing the availability of cheaper, cleaner, and more reliable energy.  Environmental quality remains the “heart of the agency” according to Klee and encompasses the following departments: Wildlife, Parks, and Land Acquisition and Property Grants.  DEEP’s main areas of concern regarding environmental quality are: climate change, resiliency and adaptation, and the importance of natural systems such as wetlands and marshes as buffers protecting critical habitats for wildlife. Woodbridge resident and Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) Commissioner Robert Klee addressed the Woodbridge Land Trust Board of Directors at its October meeting.  
On the subject of land acquisition and grants, Commission Klee reviewed DEEPs acquisition criteria and noted that DEEP now has consistent grant rounds every year, so that groups seeking grants can rely on a predictable cycle. This fall, the grant round totaled $5 million and the state has authorized $40 million for land acquisition for 2015/2016.
Klee, a native of Fairfield, Connecticut served as Chief of Staff for three years under his predecessor, Commissioner Dan Esty, before assuming the position himself.            
FALL CLEAN UP
WLT members at work.

WLT members at work.

On October 4, members of the Land Trust inspected and cleared the more than 1 mile of the Historic Indian Trail between Park Lane and Fountain Street.   Several large trees had come down across the trail – and part of the Krum Elbow extension, making the trail impassable for hikers and bike riders, some of whom expressed their appreciation as they passed our work crew during the course of the morning.   Low-hanging branches were pruned, dead branches hovering precariously overhead were pulled safely to the ground and rotted wood were removed.  Bees from the hive that our crew disturbed were a rude welcoming to the crew, but Land Trust members are up to the challenges of keeping our trails in good shape for the enjoyment of all. 

FALL WALK 2014 a SUCCESS!

Fall Walk 2014 photo 2On a beautiful autumn morning, members of the public enjoyed a leisurely and informative walk of the Elderslie property.

 

 

  • Land Trust looking for good homes for our elm trees.  Click here for application.  American Elm Application
  • Land Trust speaks out on proposed revisions to the Town Plan of Conservation and Development.  Position paper
  • Land Trust board member Cynthia Anger volunteers at the Regional Water Authority’s Woodbridge Hazardous Waste Day.
  • Land Trust continues efforts to save Baldwin Farm.  Announces $150,000 matching fund.

Spring Clean-up

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Spring 2014 work party

Trail maintenance is an important function of the Trust.  Board members Rich Jeynes, Jim Urbano,        Mike Walter and Cathy Wick together with representatives from Chase Bank and Boy Scout Ryan Oleynik, picked up trash and cleared the path from the trail head on Center Road around the playground to the pavilion, removed several large trees that had fallen across the trail, cut and cleared the smaller ones and re-routed and re-marked the trail around others  The Trust wishes to thank our friends from Chase Bank and Scout Ryan for their time and commitment over the years in helping with trail maintenance. 

  • WLT Photo Contest announced.  See Events below.
  • Land Trust applies for federal grant to help save Baldwin Farm.
  • Woodbridge Park Association supports efforts to preserve Baldwin Farm.

Board member Cathy Wick meets with Sen. Chris Murphy at roundtable discussion.

Cathy Wick with Sen. Murphy

Cathy Wick with Sen. Murphy

February 8, 2014.  Woodbridge Land Trust Board member Cathy Wick attended a roundtable discussion for local land trust leaders on February 8, held by CT Senator Chris Murphy.  According to Senator Murphy, who met recently with a group of young Connecticut farmers, the demand for locally grown food is strong, but is not being fulfilled because of the shortage of farmable land.  Providing our next generation of farmers with farmable land is just one of the reasons why the Trust has identified saving Baldwin Farm as amongst its top priorities in 2014.  According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources and Conservation Service, over 50% of the Baldwin Farm soils are prime farmlands and farmland of statewide importance. The Senator updated the group on recent developments in Washington, such as the Farm Bill, the funding for land and water conservation in this year’s federal budget, and his efforts to ensure that the tax laws that promote conservation easements will be re-authorized.  Attendees also discussed local grass roots efforts to support urban farming, to encourage environmental education in schools, and the constant struggle to obtain funding for the protection of valuable open space.

  • Woodbridge Land Trust sets 2014 Goals.  Published February 8, 2014 Amity Observer. February 13, 2014, Milford-Orange Bulletin. February 28, 2014 Woodbridge Town News Goals for 2014
  • Woodbridge Land Trust Holds Annual Meeting: Elects Officers, Welcomes New Board Members.   Published February 2, 2014 Amity Observer.  Annual Meeting 2014

2014 Events

Fall Walk 2014 – Elderslie property, September 27 at 10:00 a.m. 

WLT Photo Contest.   Photographers of all ages are invited to submit photos depicting the open spaces and trails of the Land Trust throughout the seasons.. Winning photos, with attribution will be featured on the website and in Land Trust publications.  Phtos should be submitted by May 15, 2014 to woodbridgelandtrust@gmail.com  Please provide the name of the trail depicted n the photo.

January 29, 2014:  Annual Meeting   President Keevil reviewed the activities of the Trust in 2013 and outlined its goals for 2014.

Past Events

The Land Trust has sponsored and participated in a number of community events and activities in support of land preservation and open space.  We pride ourselves on our cooperative relationships with other Woodbridge organizations.

FALL WALK 2013 –  On a glorious fall day, over 100 people joined us on our Fall Walk 2013.  Led by local historian and longtime Baldwin Road resident Edie Lockyer, Naturalist Louisa Cunningham and Jim Urbano, a proponent of open space preservation and former member of the Woodbridge Conservation Commission we explored the 85 acre farm at 902 Baldwin Road.  This iconic New England farm is home to wildlife, wetlands and the Two Mile Brook.  The Town of Woodbridge Conservation Commission co-sponsored this event.

MASSARO FARM FAMILY FUN DAY – The Land Trust was pleased to participate in this fun-filled event designed to celebrate the importance of farming and family.  Members of our Board of Directors manned our table, gladly providing information about the Trust and its Chestnut orchard.  At another important community event, we attended the BETH-WOOD BASEBALL LEAGUE’S end of season gathering on the Town Green.   Look for our displays at future town events and stop by to say hello.  http://www.massarofarm.org/wp/.

With the permission of the WOODBRIDGE HISTORICAL SOCIETY, the Trust held its September meeting in the newly restored Old South School.  We were honored to be the first organization to make use of this special space. http://www.woodbridgehistory.org/

The Land Trust is committed to maintaining local trails for the public’s enjoyment.  Partnering with the local ROTARY CLUB chapter, we cleaned the trails and area around the Rotary pavilion on Center Road.  Volunteers from the newly opened Chase Bank branch provided additional help.