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Natural Awakenings Westchester / Putnam / Dutchess New York

Family-Friendly “First Day” Celebration in Lewisboro: First Day on January 1, 2016

Dec 05, 2015 12:25PM

First Day hike last year

The Lewisboro Land Trust and the Town of Lewisboro, NY, will celebrate First Day on January 1 with an easy hike in the Ward Pound Ridge Reservation, a cider and chili lunch at the reservation’s Trailside Museum, and a workshop where children can make winter birdfeeders out of pinecones. Last year’s inaugural event attracted almost 100 participants, says Bobbe Stultz, co-chair of Lewisboro Land Trust.

The Ward Pound Ridge Reservation entrance is located off Route 121 in Cross River, NY, with parking at the Trailside Museum. The hike will take place from 11 a.m. to noon—“We think there is no better way to start the new year,” Stultz says—followed by the lunch. The workshop, sponsored by the Lewisboro Garden Club, will be held from noon to 1 p.m.

Lewisboro Land Trust will also mark a celebration of its own as it accepts the Westchester County Soil and Water Conservation Achievement Award for its native plant garden at the Leon Levy Preserve in South Salem, NY. The award will be presented December 15 at the County Center.

In December 2014, the Trust was approached by Shelby White, trustee of the Jerome Levy Foundation (who funded the acquisition of the Leon Levy Preserve), and asked to design and implement the construction of a native plant garden adjacent to the parking area at the preserve. This garden was to replace the existing lawn, which required a lot of maintenance and watering.

“In addition to cutting down on the maintenance, Ms. White wanted the garden to be a source of education for the community about the types of natives that grow best in our soil and our climate,” Stultz says.

The Trust hired landscape designer Pam Pooley to work with White to create a 5,000-square-foot garden that was low-maintenance, deer resistant, friendly to bees and butterflies and educational. They then worked with John Jay High School’s Senior Intern Program, which supplied four graduating seniors to work on the project, and other community volunteers, including town highway workers, to plant the garden.

The garden was completed in mid-June and opened to the public with an informational dedication, signage, brochures to take home and a plan for future educational programs for students and community members.   

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