“It’s like a desert out here,” crew member Taylor said on our first hike in to the project site. And she wasn’t wrong. Sand, arid heat, and lack of shade - the typical components of a desert were all there. Our crew took the comment in silent nods as we admired the scraggily pitch pines, growing crooked and strong despite unfavorable conditions, and the ubiquitous green color. Every once in a while a complaint of heat and sweat was expressed as we hiked our pick mattocks, Pulaski, grub hoes, loppers, and root mattock to what would be our first...Read more
During our Education Season, in addition to my responsibilities as an environmental educator at Heath Elementary School, I was lucky enough to be selected for a Conservation Placement with the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR). In this capacity, I was charged with assisting DCR organize information about our proposed future trail projects for final review and permitting by various environmental, conservation, and historical commissions. Through this experience, I am able to look at many of the projects that we are undertaking with a unique perspective—that which comes from...Read more
There is no better time to learn about your fellow AmeriCorps members than during stretch circle. At other times of day you might ask your hitch mates how they’re doing, if they slept well, or how they feel about taking an early lunch. Boring! At stretch circle you are expected—no, required!—to pose more stimulating queries.
Every morning, before we begin building steps or retaining walls, before we ask our bodies to swing giant hammers or dig trenches, we take a few minutes to limber up. A good stretch circle begins with a good question. Each crew member has a chance to...Read more
I opened my eyes and in a half-asleep state saw the roof of my tent shaking and moving all over the place. It was a very windy morning and my watch read 5:30am. I stuck my head outside my sleeping bag to feel how cold it would be. It felt chilly, maybe 50 degrees Fahrenheit or so. I sleepily put on my work clothes, the same ones I had been wearing the past 5 days, and got ready for another day of adventures.
This was Friday, June 10th 2016, the last day of hitch #4. I had spent the week, along with 4 other corps members, working on opening old trails at Windsor State...Read more
Waking up to the enthusiastic calls of barred owls, the screams of fisher cats, and the rustling of raccoons digging up our sump hole would be enough to cause some disconcert for any camper. But for us, by day three, we were used to having the wildlife as our only neighbors, as the rest of the park wasn’t set to open until our last day. A pair of sociable barred owls lived within the site we were camped in. From 10:30 am through all hours of the night, they called out “who cooks for you? who cooks for you, who?”. In between their unique call and their other strange, croaking noises, they...Read more
Sam Dub is crew leading this hitch- Hitch 1- Oﬃcial start of trail season! We are currently lodging in Camp Nihan and our worksite is at Breakheart Preserve. It is pretty, but not as untouched as other places. Our crew is Zane, Lukas, Sarah, and Sam W. It’s been really fun so far, we are working on a rock staircase and taking a sign out- which has been the biggest pain. My body hurts all over but it’s a good pain maybe because I know I am gaining something from it. Today Zane and I moved rock from the top of a rocky hill, over a small stream then back up a hill to use as a step. We...Read more
On April 22nd, SCA Massachusetts AmeriCorps members will be hosting local students in the 4th-8th grades for a day of Environmental Education. Students will be on site at the Kenneth Dubuque State Forest in Hawley, Massachusetts from 9am until 4pm. While there, students will be broken into groups and will rotate through various learning stations with Corps members. They will be learning about habitats, animals, wilderness survival, and seasons.
Soraya Farivar is a 23 year old from Atlanta, Georgia and recently graduated from Georgia State University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology. Her favorite subjects are Ecology and Plant Biology. She loves to hike, ride her bike, and do yoga. Prior to becoming an SCA/Americorps member Soraya was working in Boston. She looks...Read more
Lukas is 24 years old and hails from Chesapeake, VA. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Old Dominion University in December of 2015. Lukas spends his spare time reading science-fiction novels and exploring fun and adventurous local eateries. He hopes to utilize his time with the SCA to develop life-long skills that will serve him and others in an attempt to preserve and protect the environment....Read more
John “Zane” Bernard is a 20 year old from Richmond, Virginia. He enjoys hiking, swimming, and yoga among many other activities. He also enjoys history, science, and art. He loves nature and hopes to pursue a career in sustainable alternative agriculture. He looks forward to seeing the natural beauty of Massachusetts and making a positive difference over the next few months. ...Read more