Friend of the Month- December 2016

Felicity Wasser our December 2016 Friend of the Month is a true friend to Van Cortlandt Park and other greenspaces.

Felicity Wasser our December 2016 Friend of the Month is a true friend to Van Cortlandt Park.

The Friends of Van Cortlandt Park are proud to announce that our December Friend of the Month is Felicity Wasser. Felicity began volunteering with the Friends just last year, but has quickly become one of our most active and trustworthly volunteers. As part of our Trails Crew and Tibbetts Water Monitoring crew, we see Felicity on a weekly basis in the Park assisting in making the Park a better place. It is very rare that you find a volunteer with the amount of knowledge that she holds. Felicity has great skill in plant identification and very routinely is teaching us in the Park. Her love for nature and the environment is contagious and we are very happy to have her as part of the VCP community.

How and when did you get involved with the Friends of Van Cortlandt Park?
I saw kids and adults carrying garden tools around in the park one day when I was jogging and asked about what they were doing. I have been volunteering for a year, with trail work, invasive removal and water sampling. It has been great fun because I have seen and learned about many new plants and animals while helping make the park better for people and wildlife. Read more »

Friend of the Month- November 2016

The Friends of Van Cortlandt Park are happy to announce our November 2016 Friend of the Month- Nilka Martell.  Nilka is an active volunteer and advocate for not only Van Cortlandt Park but for all of our Bronx Parks.  In 2010, Nilka founded G.I.V.E (Getting Involved, Virginia Avenue Efforts) and ever since she’s been a strong fighter for our Parks.  In addition to Van Cortlandt Park, Nilka can often be found volunteering with the Bronx River Alliance and the Friends of Pelham Bay.  She is co-chair of the Bronx Coalition for Parks and Green Spaces and helps plan the annual Bronx Parks Speak Up (save the date- February 25th, 2017).  Nilka Martell is a true friend for Bronx Parks and for that the Friends of Van Cortlandt Park are truly grateful.

Nilka Martell Friend of the Month- Friends of Van Cortlandt Park
How and when did you get involved with the Friends of Van Cortlandt Park?
I learned about the Friends group in 2011, and started volunteering in 2012. Read more »

Friend of the Month- October 2016

Our October 2016 Friend of the Month- Benigno Veraz- getting ready to help with our weekly water quality monitoring.

Our October 2016 Friend of the Month- Benigno Veraz- getting ready to help with our weekly water quality monitoring.

The Friends of Van Cortlandt Park are happy to announce our October 2016 Friend of the Month- Benigno Veraz. Beni, an avid member of the Van Cortlandt Track Club, has become an extremely important part of our Water Monitoring Crew of Tibbett’s Brook. Volunteering his time nearly every week, Beni’s eye for detail provides amazing insight while out on the water and allows him to assist in training other volunteers how to accurately sample the water quality. We are extremely honored to have volunteers such as Beni join us in our programs.

How and when did you get involved with the Friends of Van Cortlandt Park?
When I was invited to join the Van Cortlandt Track Club, back in 2011, I discovered that the Park had something to offer beyond running in its trails.

What is your favorite place in the Park?
Any where there is water, and invertebrates, by the lake, the Tibbetts Brook and wetlands, there you’ll find me. Read more »

Friend of the Month- September 2016

Braedon Cohen at the Friends' Garden & Compost Site in Van Cortlandt Park.

Braeden Cohen, our September 2016 Friend of the Month, at the Friends’ Garden & Compost Site in Van Cortlandt Park.

The Friends of Van Cortlandt Park are happy to announce our September 2016 Friend of the Month- Braeden Cohen. As the Organics Recovery Coordinator for the NYC Compost Project hosted by the New York Botanical Garden, Braeden has played a key role at our Garden & Compost site since the spring of 2015. In a short time he helped to lay the foundation of our weekly food scrap collection, picking up where the previous person had left off and taking it to the next level. He is always willing to jump in and show our interns the finer points of a compost system, helping them to understand that there isn’t always a quick answer to a problem but that they need to observe and think through what is happening to come to the best solution. Rain or shine, Braeden is a welcome addition to the work we do and while he is now only dropping by to check on us while we manage the system on our own he is always available to trouble shoot or tell a joke. Thank you, Braeden for all that you do for the Friends and our Garden & Compost Site.

How and when did you get involved with the Friends of Van Cortlandt Park?

I started working with the Friends of Van Cortlandt Park in April of 2015. That’s when I started my job as an Organics Recovery Coordinator for the NYC Compost Project hosted by the New York Botanical Garden. Last year, with the help of awesome volunteers, I staffed the Tuesday Food Scrap Drop-Off where we currently accept food scraps from the public and use them to make compost for the Friend of Van Cortlandt Park’s Garden. I am no longer staffing the Tuesday drop-off because I am setting up new sites in the Bronx, we have passed the pitch-fork to FVCP. Next time you drop off your scraps, be sure to thank Alex for doing such a great job! Read more »

Press Release: FVCP Part of National Campaign to Restore Trails

For Immediate ReleaseStone Steps on John Muir Trail in Van Cortlandt Park Bronx NY
September 6th, 2016

Friends of Van Cortlandt Park Part of National Campaign from Michelob ULTRA and the American Hiking Society to restore trails this fall

A portion of every Michelob ULTRA purchase this fall will help restore 12 trails, including the John Muir Trail in Van Cortlandt Park, throughout the US and everyone can help decide how the funds are distributed.

Just in time for the fall foliage, Michelob ULTRA is introducing an initiative to help restore running, cycling and hiking trails which are essential to Michelob ULTRA drinkers’ pursuit of an active life.  From September 4th through November 26th Michelob ULTRA will be donating a portion of every purchase up to $200,000 to the restoration of 12 trails across the United States, including our very own John Muir Trail in Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx, NY.

Partnering with the American Hiking Sociery for the second straight year, Michelob ULTRA has expanded the program from two trails in 2015 to a total of 12 trails this year.  Each of the 12 participating trails will received $5,000, with Michelob ULTRA drinkers helping to decide which trails receive the remaining funds by visiting michelobULTRA.com/theextramile and voting for their hometown. Read more »

Press Release- FVCP Reports Illicit Discharge into Tibbetts Brook in Yonkers

For Immediate Release

Pipe discharging into Tibbetts Brook in Yonkers on a dry weather day. Photo taken August 9th, 2016.

Pipe discharging into Tibbetts Brook in Yonkers on a dry weather day. Photo taken August 9th, 2016.

August 16th, 2016

Friends of Van Cortlandt Park Reports Illicit Discharge into Tibbetts Brook in Yonkers

The Friends of Van Cortlandt Park have reported to the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation what we believe to be a continuous illicit discharge into Tibbetts Brook within Yonkers.  The staff of the Friends of Van Cortlandt Park and community members have reported this pipe discharging during dry weather and strong smells of detergent and discoloration, a blue-green color, have been reported too. The 4 foot pipe is located along the South County Trail adjacent to Lawton Street nearby where the Brophy Brothers Wholesale is located. The coordinates are 40.9122, -73.8842 and the best way to access the pipe is by entering the South County Bike Trail from Alan B Shepard Jr. Place and heading south to the next block, before you reach the overpass that is McLean Avenue. Read more »