The Goodwins’ Vision Realized

Three years ago, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) in CT and the Community Foundation of Middlesex County (CFMC) came together to ensure the realization of the late Dr. Richard Goodwin’s, co-founder of TNC and land preservationist, and his spouse Esther’s vision for Burnham Brook Preserve.

Their vision? To expand access to Burnham Brook Preserve as well as conservation initiatives and experiences in the Preserve region. Burnham Brook Preserve you ask? It’s a 1122-acre oasis for birds, wildlife and people that stretches from East Haddam to Old Lyme and protects the watersheds of Burnham Brook, Strong Brook and the Eightmile River. It is one of the most important conservation areas of the region and has been under the stewardship of TNC in CT with grant support provided by CFMC over the years.

TNC in CT has been very busy making Burnham Brook Preserve more accessible, more visible, and more integrated with the communities surrounding it. Programming has been expanded thanks to partnerships with organizations such as the Eightmile River Wild and Scenic Coordinating Committee, East Haddam Land Trust and Franklin Academy to include citizen science opportunities, educational presentations, and guided preserve walks. From nighttime star gazing to educating students on the safe use of hand tools and proper pruning techniques to increasing wheelchair access to trails throughout the preserve, there surely is something for everyone!

In addition to new programming, TNC in CT has continued managing the Preserve to benefit the biodiversity and forest health through field management, invasive species control, white-tailed deer management, and trail maintenance. No small feat as Preserve lands support hundreds of native plants and animals found in multiple distinct habitat types!

On top of all that, the former home of the Goodwins, located on the Burnham Brook Preserve premises, was transformed into a collaborative office space with breathtaking views of the nature surrounding it.

We extend a Round of Applause to TNC in CT for their tireless work in ensuring that the Goodwins’ dream is realized and thank them for their extraordinary partnership. We hope everyone will venture out to see the wonders of Burnham Brook Preserve.

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