East End Park Project

East End snow dump in 2012.
(VT Agency of Natural Resources photo)

EVENT APPLICATION: Click here to download the application form from the Village of Woodstock to hold an event at East End Park. Completed applications must be emailed to: nnourse@townofwoodstock.org.

THE STORY BEHIND EAST END PARK

Beginning with the gestation of the East End Project (2009) and continuing through the construction of the East End Park (2018-2020), Sustainable Woodstock’s East End Action Group (EEAG), staff and partners transformed Woodstock’s primary public access to the Ottauquechee River into a valuable recreational facility for local residents and visitors alike.

Park visitors looking north are treated to expansive views of Billings Farm and Museum, Marsh-Billings Rockefeller National Historical Park and the distant hills—bucolic landscapes that evoke the conservation stewardship and agricultural legacies of George Perkins Marsh and Frederick Billings. The adjoining 3-mile Ottauquechee River Trail enhances the outdoor experience, enabling park visitors to become immersed in the natural beauty of this riparian environment.

2013 East End cleanup.

The East End Park Project partnered with the Town, Village and State to move the old snow dump to an environmentally secure location, clean up the site, plant native flowers and edible plants and design and rehabilitate a badly deteriorated parcel of prime riverside land, thus improving water quality in the Ottauquechee River. The project restored a floodplain and riparian buffer seriously damaged by Tropical Storm Irene—using native vegetation to increase soil stability, prevent erosion, filter runoff and reduce the volume and velocity of the river during flooding events in order to protect downstream properties.

Other partners who made the park possible by their collaboration and support include many incredibly generous donors, community partners, the Town and Village of Woodstock, Vermont’s Agency of Natural Resources and Dept. of Buildings and General Services, Connecticut River Conservancy, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Vermont Youth Conservation Corps, Boy Scout Troop 220 of Woodstock and numerous other organizations and individuals. EPA funding from Two Rivers-Ottauquechee Regional Commission was used for initial brownfields assessment at the East End site, and Rita Seto, TRORC Senior Planner, helped the Town obtain and manage the funding for moving the snow dump.

2017 Rain garden planting
by East End Action Group volunteers.

By force of sheer dedication, tireless efforts, creativity, resourcefulness and fortitude, EEAG volunteers took a disused and overgrown brownfield site and reimagined it into a shining new recreation area for all to enjoy. The East End Park could not have been created without the perseverance of a core group of passionate and dedicated volunteer leaders: Barbara Barry, Mary MacVey, Jack Rossi and Joby Thompson. These individuals inspired others to surmount every obstacle that was encountered.

2020-Amphitheater, pergola, and Joby Thompson labyrinth.

Components of the park include a permaculture garden and apple trees, slide, rock scramble, the Joby Thompson Labyrinth and a magnificent amphitheater and pergola. The total investment has been $683,785 (plus innumerable hours donated by volunteers, partners and Sustainable Woodstock staff). This figure includes generous funding from private donors and the Town of Woodstock, as well as grants from the State of Vermont, the federal government, foundations and other sources.

The East End Action Group’s vision—coupled with the inspiring generosity of private donors and foundations during a successful capital campaign—are why the park exists today. We cannot say enough how grateful and moved we are by the way in which supporters shared their ideas, passion and resources to transform a vision into a vibrant space for nature and humankind to comingle.

2020-Slide, rock scramble & stone sculpture.

As an organization that conceives and develops projects and initiatives for the betterment of the environment and the public good, it has been Sustainable Woodstock’s honor to be entrusted from 2009-2020 with the East End Project and with creating the East End Park. In early 2021 we were pleased to transfer long-term stewardship of the East End Project to the Woodstock Community Trust as part of that organization’s expansive mission to improve the quality of life in Woodstock. Click here for more information.


 

Things to do at the Park!

Edible Garden:

In our edible garden there are Blueberries, Rhubarb, Strawberries, Raspberries, crab apples, and apples available to all visitors!


Boat Launch Fishing and Swimming Hole:

Jump in! The water is fine.

The gentle current of the Ottauquechee river is perfect for all water activities!

Boat Launch


Picnic and Enjoy the View:

Flower beds

Picnic benches

Stone benches, Jacob Maxham Eagle Scout Project

Spiral stone staircase

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