As we continue to celebrate our 25th Anniversary year, the Friends of Van Cortlandt Park have been very active in and around Van Cortlandt Park this summer. We wanted to share with you this list of 25 things we accomplished during the summer:
1.) We hired 20 summer interns who worked on our Summer Trails Crew or Garden 2 Market internships and successfully completed their terms.
2.) We had 25th Anniversary Banners installed on the Park border along Broadway and Van Cortlandt Park South to celebrate our anniversary thanks to 11 local sponsors.
3.) Our Summer Trails Crew Interns maintained 8.1 miles of hiking trails within Van Cortlandt Park.
4.) We worked with the Municipal Arts Society and Tatti Art Conservation to get the Grand Central Stones cleaned removing many layers of graffiti and paint so that the original stone can now be seen.
5.) Our Garden 2 Market Interns staffed our weekly Amalgamated Youthmarket at Gale Place and Orloff selling locally grown produce at affordable prices to the community. Our market will remain open on Wednesdays from 2-7pm until November 1st. In addition to selling produce, these interns have learned about our local food system, lead cooking demonstrations and shared their knowledge of local produce with customers.
6.) We partnered with GrowNYC to provide a Norwood Youthmarket in front of Mosholu Montefiore Community Center which was staff with Summer Youth Employment Interns for the first 6 weeks. Our Garden 2 Market interns are now working the market and will be there every Thursday from 12-7pm until November 16th.
7.) We worked with the Student Conservation Association to install 12 checksteps along the John Muir Trail.
8.) Our Garden 2 Market Interns helped to maintain our 800 square feet of vegetable beds at our Garden and Compost Site where with the help of over 90 volunteers harvested over 100 pounds of vegetables this summer. Our produce is either used for cooking demos at our market donated to Marble Hill Senior Center
9.) We removed 1.4 acres of Water Chestnut from the surface of Van Cortlandt Lake with the help of our Summer Trails Crew interns, Groundwork
Hudson Valley interns, Van Cortlandt Park Green Teen interns and other volunteers.
10.) We were one of the many sites around the Bronx growing serrano peppers for Bronx Hot Sauce which can be purchased at our Youthmarkets.
11.) We worked with the Student Conservation Association to construct 808 feet of new trail for the John Muir Nature Trail.
12.) Our Summer Trails Crew Interns worked alongside Parks NRG to remove Mile-a-minute from the Northeast section of the Park.
13.) We worked with Boy Scout Troop 102 from Woodlawn to build a 70 foot wooden walkway along the John Muir trail as it skirts along the Mosholu Parkway.
14.) Our Garden 2 Market Interns helped to maintain the rooftop gardens at St. Simon Stock School and Manhattan College.
15.) Our Summer Trails Crew Interns monitored Tibbetts Brook through chemical testing.
16.) We launched our Educational Programs on Explorable Places to make it easier for teachers to schedule programs with us.
17.) We held Exploring Bronx Forests Teacher Workshop with the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation for 10 teachers who received credits for Professional Development Hours from the NYC Department of Education.
18.) Our Summer Trails Crew Interns and volunteers on City of Water Day conducted benthic macroinvertebrate surveys in Tibbetts Brook.
19.) We finished a draft of our Tibbetts Water Quality Monitoring Report and will be ready to share it with the public this fall.
20.) Our Summer Trails Crew Interns worked alongside Groundworks Hudson Valley to improve the drainage and removing invasive species along the Old Croton Aqueduct Trail in Yonkers.
21.) We lead a weekly educational program in Van Cortlandt Park for the kids at the Riverdale Y Summer Camp.
22.) We helped bring Village Community Rowing to Van Cortlandt Lake to provide free weekly rowing for the community- the last session will be on Friday September 1st from 4-7pm.
23.) Our Summer Trails Crew Interns improved the drainage of 4 trails through the construction of drainage dips and drains to allow water to run off the trail and keep hikers feet dry.
24.) We worked with Riverdale Neighborhood House and put all of our Summer interns through Career exploration and resume building workshops
25.) We planned our fall calendar. Check out our Events Page to see all of upcoming public events.