Annapolis, MD (04/08/05) - New water trails in New York, George Washington's boyhood home and one of the world's largest urban parks are among the seven new sites recently designated Gateways by the Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network (CBGN).
The sites, located in New York, Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia, all go a long way toward increasing the public's opportunities to learn about the Chesapeake Bay and its watershed.
“These newest Gateways show just how diverse the Network really is,” said CBGN Director Jonathan Doherty. “They are all different, but they all have one thing in common – a commitment to preserving and enhancing life on and around the Chesapeake Bay and its rivers. Each of these sites is a treasure in its own right – naturally-beautiful, most with historical significance. But what makes them important is that visitors can travel to these places and learn more about the Chesapeake and how they figure in its history and future.”
The new Gateways are:
District of Columbia:
Rock Creek Park: Rock Creek Park, a National Park located in the heart of Washington, DC, includes Rock Creek from the Maryland line to the Potomac River, tributaries to Rock Creek and more than 3,000 acres of cultural and natural resources related to the Potomac watershed leading to the Chesapeake Bay. Resources include Native American quarry sites, a 19 th century grist mill on Rock Creek (Pierce Mill), and miles of stream banks with native vegetation. More than 2 million visitors travel to Park-managed sites each year.
Dogwood Harbor ( Tilghman Island ): Dogwood Harbor, located on Tilghman Island on Maryland's Eastern Shore, is a commercial hub dedicated to local watermen. It houses one of the largest remaining fleets of skipjacks and several commercial workboats and rigs, and offers visitors an authentic Chesapeake Bay experience where they can learn about the boats, the watermen and the generations of watermen families who have lived on and off the Bay.
Jones Falls Trail ( Baltimore ): Jones Falls Trail, which opened its first phase in 2004, provides the public access to an urban Chesapeake tributaries. The trail offers visitors opportunities to learn about this area's significance in the history of the Chesapeake , including the mills, waterways and other sites related to settlement and economic development along the watershed. When completed, the trail will connect 10 miles of parks and communities and continue to provide the public greater access to the Jones Falls and the historic waterway from Robert E. Lee Dam to the Inner Harbor in Baltimore.
Headwaters River Trails Partnership ( Upper Susquehanna River Watershed). The Upper Susquehanna River is the northernmost headwaters of the Chesapeake Bay, and this developing water trail – ultimately nearly 328 miles long – will connect visitors not only to the water, but also to dozens of parks, natural areas and historic sites. The water trail will include the mainstem ( Pennsylvania line to Cooperstown ), the Chenango, Tioughnioga, Otselic, and Unadilla.
George Washington's Ferry Farm ( Fredericksburg ): Washington's Ferry Farm includes historic farmlands with frontage along the Rappahannock River, archeological study sites related to Washington's boyhood era, and an earlier homestead site dating back to the early 18th century. Costumed interpreters welcome visitors, teaching them about the Farm, its agrarian landscape, access to the Rappahannock, and the intricacies of living and working on the Chesapeake Bay watershed in the 18th century.
Lawrence Lewis Park ( Charles City ): This 24-acre community park, situated on a tidal section of the James River, provides the only public water access on the north side of the James from Henrico County to James City County . The park's history includes the Weyanoke Indians, who owned the land when the first Europeans landed at Jamestown. Today, the park provides a natural setting for visitors to observe and enjoy the diverse woodland, wetland and shoreline ecologies. It is home to a large concentration of bald eagles in the winter and osprey in the summer.
Shenandoah River State Park (Bentonville): This park is located in the Blue Ridge and situated on the eastern bank of the South Fork of the Shenandoah River, a Chesapeake tributary that was a key transportation route in the 19th century for upstream farms and iron mines to the port cities on the Bay. It is comprised of more than 1,600 acres of woodlands, meadows and pastoral lands along the South Fork. Visitors can hike 14 miles of multiple use trails, access the water for paddling and canoeing, or picnic in the natural settings of this upper watershed site. Cultural sites within the park include an historic Civil War era river crossing used by Stonewall Jackson during the battle of Front Royal and Native American archeology.
For more information contact:
John Maounis (410) 267-5778
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