Montezuma Historical SocietyMontezuma Historical Society

Heritage Park’s Swamp Hermit Paradise Project Update


DAY 1 — off to a great start!

I wrote earlier about a beautiful site in Montezuma Heritage Park where our Design Committee would like to build an outlook area for birders and nature lovers to visit. The project has become a reality due to the generous donations of 84 Lumber,  Sennett; Home Depot, Aurelius, and our latest contributor Secor Lumber, Savannah; and the hard work of some of our most dedicated  Friends of the Park volunteers.

Mike Riley, Tom Fitzsimmons, Jim Decker, Paul Baker, and Stan Longyear set six posts today (June 21, 2014) for the decking portion of the project near the site of the former Enlarged Erie Canal dry dock.

The site is named for Foster Parker, a Montezuma naturalist, who left a legacy of the love for nature in this beautiful area.  The Friends of the Park are proud to enhance this site for the community and visitors to also appreciate what Foster considered “Paradise.” You can read more about his life and love of the land on my post here.

Here are some updated photos taken by Bunny Baker from the the second day”s work on the project.

DAY 2 -- lookin' good guys!

DAY 2 — great job, guys!


A beautiful morning in the park. I love my job — I get to take pictures of people working! Stan and Mike worked on the railing today. Bill Breen, a master woodworker had been out for a ride in the park picking blackberries and stopped by to check out the work.


Here Dan Randolph, Paul Baker and Stan Longyear are working on building the steps.




(Updated August 23, 2014) Our latest donation of material was received from Secor Lumber. With their generous donation volunteers Dave Colvin and Stan Longyear put the finishing touches on the project in less than two months of its start! Hand railings and benches have been added.  Later in the fall volunteers plan to do some brush cutting to make the view even clearer. Now it’s your turn — take a walk out on Trail #6, and enjoy the sites and sounds of nature. We hope you enjoy our latest addition to the park.

If you are a birder, we would love to hear about your sitings. Recently Park Friends, Anita Messina and Terry Warner enjoyed a 40 -minute outing in the park, and spotted or heard eighteen birds: Catbird, Tufted Titmouse, Cedar Waxwings, Tree Sparrow, Red-winged Blackbirds, House Finch, Tree Swallows, Alder Flycatcher (heard), Goldfinch, Chickadee, Yellow Warbler, Red-tailed Hawk, Crows, White-crowned Sparrow, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Mourning Dove, Yellow-Shafted Flicker and Nuthatch.

The trail is located off Chapman Road; park near the kiosk and walk south to the Trail Marker #6 on the east side of the road. Follow the trail until you come to the former site of Meil’s Drydock. The marsh is just south of this site. Pick up a copy of “For the Birds in Cayuga County,” a handy birdwatching guide and checklist to use while visiting the site.


2 Comments on “Heritage Park’s Swamp Hermit Paradise Project Update

  1. I love the elevated platform for bird watching combined with the brochure! Such a great way to enjoy nature and history in our area!

    • This is the beginning of what’s in store for this area of the park. Future plans include a handicap boardwalk out on the marsh area with new access bridge to the trail entering from behind the firehouse.

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