(PRINCETON, NJ) – Friends of Abbott Marshlands possesses announced the limited reopening of the Tulpehaking Nature Center over the weekend. Hours are 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Saturday and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Sunday from now until the end of August. In the current photographic exhibition, “The wisdom of trees: the art and science of trees”, the photographers Patricia bender and Dr Mary Alessio Leck explore the art, life and science of trees, our wonderful sentinels of the forest.
This two-gallery exhibit seeks to combine science and art in a way that increases our understanding and enjoyment of the trees that adorn our region and the planet. Originally opened on February 21, 2020, a wonderful, well-attended reception was held on February 23 for family, friends, colleagues and the public. But soon after, the nature center was closed for 17 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Given that the exhibition would have been open for several more months in 2020 until July, it is fitting that the exhibition reopens this month for another four months until November 2021.
One of the best aspects of this exhibition is the difference with which each of the photographers treats their subject. It is a must-see exhibition. Mary is one of the founders of Abbott Marshes with a life of botanical research in the Marsh as well as published papers and co-author of a book, Ecology of Soil Seed Banks. She is also an accomplished photographer who has exhibited her work in Princeton and beyond.
As part of the Wisdom of Trees exhibit, affiliate programs held in 2021 were: two winter tree identification workshops in January with Pat Coleman and Nick Alpeza; A wildflower and tree walk at Northern Community Park with Mary Leck in April, and a tree walk at Joseph Bonaparte’s Point Breeze with Rider Teacher Daniel Druckenbrod in early June. A next tree workshop is planned as well as insect and mushroom walks. Visit the website’s events page and event posts on Facebook to register.
Trekking the trails on the unspoiled lands of the Abbott Marshes during the pandemic meant a lot to the local communities of Bordentown, Trenton and Hamilton during this difficult time. Being outside, feeling the freshness of the air and watching natural imagery during a “forest bath” are proven to calm visitors and provide respite in an ever-changing world. The reopening of the nature center will also help provide educational resources, answers to questions, access to toilets, etc. Private family tours are available for a fee and by appointment through the naturalists at Tulpehaking Nature Center at 157 Westcott Ave., Hamilton. Call Kelly Rypkema at 609-888-3218 if you are interested. There are weekly and monthly free group walks with registration at rotating locations between Hamilton, Trenton and Bordentown: Watson Woods, Spring Lake to Roebling Park, Northern Community Park, Bordentown Bluffs with Crosswicks Creek Water Trail and D&R Canal State Park between Bordentown and Trenton. Another location will be added this year at Point Breeze, the former historic estate of Joseph Bonaparte.
Advertise with New Jersey Stage for $ 50 to $ 100 per month, click here for more information
Friends of the Abbott Marshes have organized and sponsored a variety of programs to educate people on the Marsh. Programs included field and canoe trips, trail maintenance and clean-ups, seminars and biannual Voices for the Marsh paired photo exhibits. In 2020, they launched The Abbott Marshlands Inspiration Showcase, a seasonally curated online art, poetry, prose and photography exhibition to show appreciation for the swamps and how it personally affects visitors. The current show is open for registration until August 15.
Next year, they hope to personally celebrate the important 20th anniversary milestone of Friends of the Abbott Marshes. This is an excellent team of volunteers who dedicate countless hours to maintaining the trails, cleaning up the garbage, helping with the planting of trees or pollinators, and leading the walks. group and specialized conferences. As their website states, “Nulelìntàm èli paan. (Lenape, ‘I’m happy because you came’) ”
Abbott Marshes – The Abbott Marsh Council strives to support the stewardship, preservation and protection of the Abbott Marshes. Members of the Abbott Marshlands Council are private citizens, representatives of public and industrial landowners and others. In 1999, the preservation of these marshes began as a project of the D&R Greenway Land Trust, following a recommendation from the Hamilton / Trenton Marsh Management Plan Council. They then developed the cooperative stewardship plan in 2010, an updated plan for stewardship and management.
Friends of Abbott Marshes, Organized in 2002 as Friends of the Marsh, is a community-based volunteer organization dedicated to improving the appreciation and protection of the Abbott Marshes. Their mission is to engage and inspire a diverse community to discover the unique nature and history of the marshes along with the surrounding upland woods. In 2011, the name was changed to Friends for the Abbott Marshlands to recognize the historical and natural significance of the area. Abbott Farm Historic District is New Jersey’s first National Historic Landmark archaeological site designated by the US Department of the Interior on December 8, 1976. It is named after Charles Conrad Abbott. His early archaeological work and his writings stimulated much research there. It is the largest known middle forestry village of its kind on the eastern seaboard of the United States.
IMAGES: (TOP) Photo by Mary Leck (MIDDLE) Photo by Patricia Bender (BOTTOM) Vista Spring Lake in May