[an error occurred while processing this directive] Friends of RCSP
February, 2006 Newsletter

Dear Friend of Ridley Creek State Park,

We are pleased to announce that Tony Ieradi has joined the Friends of Ridley Creek State Park as Membership Chair. In this capacity, Tony will keep track of our membership database, manage the yearly membership renewal drive, and work to increase membership. Tony has worked with several organizations in the past such as the Delaware County Historical Society, and is current Board Chair of the Wawa Employees Credit Union, as well as President of Riddlewood Swim Club. For more information you can contact him at membership@friendsofrcsp.org or 610-742-7252.

Membership Meeting
It’s been a long time since there has been a general membership meeting. There have been changes in officers and in the general direction of the Friends meetings from “general meetings” to more activity-based events. We hope you like it. However, in order to keep the Friends a viable organization, it is necessary to conduct some business once in a while! So, there will be a general membership meeting on Sunday, May 21, 2006 at Pavilion 8 in the Park. The meeting will consist of various activities, a picnic and most importantly, Board elections. If you have someone in mind for a Board position, please email Jack Miller, VP. Vacancies are President and Grounds Chairperson. Board elections and picnic are open to paid members only. The general public is welcome to attend the general meeting.

Trails Update
Monthly Volunteers - January's trail work brought out 22 volunteers. This follows 25 volunteers coming out for trail work each month in November and December. Erosion controls have been installed in several locations, brush has been cut back on overgrown trails, and vines have been removed which were choking the beautiful hardwood trees. Trails that were eroding into Ridley Creek have been re-routed. Excellent work, spirit, energy, vibes, all around!

All-Accessible Trail - We have a new architectural team which has started work on a design for our "Universal Access Trail" (to be an ADA-compliant, nature-and-history educational trail for people with all kinds of physical challenges). They include Kim Douglas, a Registered Landscape Architect; Nicholas Groch, Architect Intern; and Dean Sherwin, Architectural Cost Estimator. Their services are pro bono, paid for by a grant from the Community Design Collaborative of the Philadelphia Chapter, American Institute of Architects.

We are undertaking a joint project with the Master Gardeners of Delaware County. The project will beautify the grounds near the park office with annual plants. If you are interested in participating in this project, and we hope you are, please contact Tim Higgins, President.

Our monthly trail work was listed in the November-December issue of the national publication, Backpacker Magazine, as one of ten featured "Things to Do" in the Northeastern U.S.! Wow, Howard, you guys must be having some fun out there!

The trails group meets the first Saturday of each month at the Park Headquarters at 9am. Trail work lasts until 12pm with refreshments served afterwards. If you are interested in being a part of this group, please contact Howard Sherman at HowardSherman@att.net or (610) 626-0751

Follow up from the Holiday Historic House Tour
For those of you who attended, I think you will agree that the Friends of Ridley Creek State Park Holiday Historic House Tour was a huge success. The success of this program was a result of many dedicated hours spent by volunteers and homeowners planning and executing a flawless event. Student volunteers from Interboro High School as well as Penncrest High School were invaluable at the houses on our tour. There were approximately 200 guests who enjoyed the day, many of whom joined the Friends that day. Beautiful floral arrangements were dontated by local florists (please see our website) and added a special festive touch to the homes. The Newtown Square Garden Club decorated the ballroom of Hunting Hill Mansion while additional volunteers decorated the rest of the mansion.

The total of income from this special day was $5,100, which went directly to the Friends for repair and maintenance of the gardens, grounds, fountains and Mansion at Ridley Creek State Park.

Front Desk Volunteers
A training session for front desk volunteers will be held Saturday March 18, 10:00 - 12:00. Desk volunteers are the “face” of the Park-the first person visitors see upon entering the mansion. If you have a gift for or desire to work with people, please come find out more about this volunteer position.

For this position you must be present during events held in the ballroom to monitor the event and represent the interests of the Park-- usually during Friday evenings and day or evenings on Saturday or Sunday. The job involves knowledge of the office, where to find anything that a group may need (light switch, broom, scissors) and who and how to contact park staff or emergency personnel if needed.

Please contact Roger McChesney at rmcchesney@state.pa.us or 610-892-3900 if you would like to sign up for training.

Other Good News
The FORCSP has been awarded a $250.00 grant for trail work supplies and activities from the Southeast Pennsylvania Group of the Sierra Club.

Due to substantial success in increasing our membership to over 120 dues paying members and the phenomenal success of our Holliday House Tour we have been able to set aside money to purchase a lap to for Ridley Creek State Park's Environmental Education Program to be used in Power Point presentations and other educational programs.

Important Tax Reminder!
Please remember that the Friends of Ridley Creek State Park is a qualified 501(c)(3) organization which means that your donations are tax deductible. You can join or renew for as little as $10.00. Check our website for details. Make checks payable to PPFF-FORCSP. Do you know of a business who would give a business discount to Friends members? If so, please contact Tim Higgins at President@FriendsofRCSP.org.

If you would like to know more about our events and activities, please visit our website for updated pictures of recent events and 2005 photo contest. Please see the events calendar outlining future events.

If you have an idea for the newsletter, please email publicity@friendsofrcsp.org.

Would you like to make a donation? Click here to join, renew, or make a one-time donation!