Town Forest Appreciation Day
Town Forest Appreciation Day - SEPT. 23, 2023
On Saturday September 23, 2023 the Reading Town Forest Committee and the Ipswich River Watershed Association will hold a free public event from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. to celebrate the Town Forest, and the Ipswich River that flows passed it.
The Reading Town Forest was created by the people of Reading in 1930. Originally eighty acres in size, the forest today includes almost three hundred acres of land and is a valued environmental and recreational resource for the community. The Ipswich River Watershed Association (IRWA), established in 1977, is a group of residents, scientists, businesses and community leaders concerned about the health of the Ipswich River and its watershed. The IRWA acts as the voice of the river. Its aim is to protect nature and make sure there is enough clean, safe, reliable water for people, fish and wildlife.
There is a symbiotic relationship between the Town Forest and the Ipswich River because what happens in one impacts the other. The September 23rd event will raise awareness of the tremendous resource of the forest and river. The Town Forest is multi-use resource where people go for hiking, mountain biking, bird watching, snowshoeing, cross country skiing and walking dogs. It forms part of the watershed for the river. The Ipswich River forms the northern boundary of the Town Forest. It hosts a large variety of wildlife. Many view the river from the Town Forest and enjoy it in kayaks. Both are important ecological habitats
So, what will the day look like?
For starters it will run from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. It is free, open to all, with parking at the Wood End Elementary School. The school is located at 85 Sunset Rock Ln, Reading, MA. The event is handicapped accessible to the stationary display tables located on the playing field. The forest itself is not completely handicapped accessible.
In addition to the Town Forest Committee and the Ipswich River Watershed Association, a number of groups are participating including the Reading Library, bird enthusiast Dave Williams, the Reading Open Land Trust, REI, Crystal Garden Club, Black Earth, Reading Trails Committee, and Reading Conservation Commission.
Events include an 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. bird walk led by Dave William and a 10am mindfulness forest walk conducted by staff from the Ipswich River Watershed Association. Ongoing presentations include a water test and kayak presentation by staff from the Ipswich River Watershed Association. REI will be offering a camping demonstration along with safety tips. Members of the Crystal Garden Club will present topics on native species.