Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Reclaiming the North End of Harbor Park, Sat. May 30, 8 a.m.

Learn about invasive plants while we remove them from a prime Middletown location. The Jonah Center calls for volunteers to help with this unique partnership opportunity that is closely related to our own mission.

Lunch and BBQ included. To make sure we have enough food, it is important that we know who is coming by Tuesday the 26th. Please reply to Lisa Santangelo at

Below are the background and details.

The Lions Club and crews from The Connection's AIC (Judicial Branch Community Service Work Crews) will be cleaning up the historic north end of Harbor Park. Japanese knot weed, Japanese sumac, bittersweet and other invasive plants have taken over the fencing and shoulder of the northern most 600 feet of the park. This screening from public view has attracted activities inconsistent with the stated "Waterfront Mission" which includes "A waterfront that serves as a focal point of community activities for people of all ages and interests throughout the year." and "Increased public awareness of the region's River-related culture and history." This area was once the landing for the ferry-boat that commerce between Middletown and Portland and the steamboat that took residents to Hartford and New York City.

Volunteers should wear long pants and shirts with long sleeves and gloves. Note that there is poison ivy in the area, so people who are highly allergic should not participate in this work day. Sun screen and sun glasses are recommended, as well as alcohol-containing hand gel to remove any plant oils we may contact.

Since we will be cutting, trimming and raking, volunteers are asked to bring clippers (short and long handled), small saws (hand, bow or sling) and rakes. (Make sure to mark your tools.) We will have coffee and donuts at 8:00, then do a sweep of the litter before the crews arrive with the heavy tools between 8:15 and 8:30. A box lunch will be served at 12:00. We will finish the day with a BBQ around 3:30 or 4.

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