Southborough Open Land Foundation celebrates 25 years
By Sue Wambolt, Contributing Writer
Southborough – The Southborough Open Land Foundation (SOLF) was founded in 1988 by former resident Lawrence Susskind, an urban planner, and Pete Kallander, a lifelong resident of the town. It is an independent, private, nonprofit organization of volunteers, separate from town government, who aim to preserve, protect and enhance the natural resources in the town of Southborough.
Over the past 25 years, it has succeeded in maintaining and improving the quality of life for current and future residents. as well as for the visitors who travel to and through the town.
On Sunday, Sept. 15, SOLF is inviting the public to a 25th anniversary party at the Phil and Elaine Beals Preserve, located just south of Main Street opposite Chestnut Hill Road. The event will take place from 1 to 5 p.m. and will feature music by the Blackstone Valley Blue Grass Band. There will be walks with naturalists, art along the trails, nature face painting, a nature scavenger hunt, games and a silent auction. Additionally, the Oak Grove Painters will display their art work and visitors will be treated to animal presentations by “Animal Encounters.” The celebration will be held rain or shine. Admission is free.
Among its accomplishments over the past 25 years, SOLF has acquired and protected 17 properties, totaling 180 acres and taken part in the Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program (WHIP), helping create a wildlife restoration area on six acres of Beals Preserve.
Additionally, SOLF has been able to sponsor nature-related activities for adults and children and has worked with a variety of organizations such as the Scouts, the library, Eastern Mountain Sports, and Digital Federal Credit Union.
Looking forward, SOLF is hoping to acquire more land and to provide light recreational access to more SOLF properties. The group hopes to engage Southborough citizens as volunteers and future leaders in open space preservation and management. They plan to get the schools more involved with science projects or surveys conducted on their properties.
In order for SOLF to preserve and protect the open land and rural character in the town of Southborough, they need residents to support their activities in land protection, stewardship and nature education work.
“If you have an area of expertise related to nature you may be able to help out by sponsoring a program related to your expertise, like leading a bird or botany walk, trail work, invasive species removal or just a simple family oriented nature walk,” said Vice President Carol Gay.
SOLF looks forward to building on the accomplishments of their first 25 years. To learn more, visit solf.org.
SOLF is seeking donations for its silent auction. To help with a donation, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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