R.I. Celebrates Land Conservation with Two-Month Celebration

By ecoRI News staff

The 2015 Land Trust Days, coordinated by the Rhode Island Land Trust Council, will be held at sites across the state from Aug. 8 to Oct. 14, with a special kick-off “Blue Moon Celebration” at the South Kingstown Land Trust’s Weeden Farm on July 31 at 7 p.m.

All Land Trust Days activities encourage individuals and families to “Discover Your True Nature” by getting outside to enjoy the state’s many open spaces. The South Kingstown celebration features a full “Blue Moon” walk — a blue moon is the infrequent second full moon of the month — and a bonfire. Loren Spears, executive director of the Tomaquag Museum, will talk about the importance of the moon and the night sky to Native Americans.

During the walk around the farm, the South Kingstown Land Trust’s resident geologist will help participants identify different rocks in the farm’s stonewalls. Participants also will have an opportunity to use telescopes, which will be placed throughout the property’s fields.

“Land Trust Days have been very popular the past three years. Hundreds of people have attended activities and discovered the protected green open spaces in their community where they can go to relax and enjoy natural surroundings − peaceful places where they can get rejuvenated,” said Rupert Friday, executive director of the Land Trust Council. “It’s good for our health to unplug and enjoy the outdoors. And when you ask people to identify their favorite place, most people point to some place outdoors with natural surroundings. Land Trust Days puts the spotlight on many of these special places in Rhode Island.”

Land trusts are nonprofits that conserve land to protect drinking-water supplies, sensitive wildlife habitats, forests and farmland. Rhode Island, with 45 land trusts, has more land trusts per square mile than any other state. These organizations help protect some 36,800 acres of land in Rhode Island — about a quarter of all the protected land in the state.

Over the course of the two-month-long celebration, there will be opportunities for people everywhere in the state to take part in activities close to home. Land Trust Days features guided walks, hot-dog roasts, bird banding, community festivals and farm tours.

For a detailed calendar of events, click here.