GOSA Wins $534,300 State Grant For Sheep Farm

SOUTH GLASTONBURY — The Groton Open Space Association received a $534,300 state grant on Oct. 14, 2010 toward the purchase of the 63-acre Sheep Farm on Hazelnut Hill Road, site of Groton’s highest waterfall.

The grant under the state’s Open Space and Watershed Land Acquisition Grant Program was awarded by Gov. Jodi Rell in a ceremony at The Old Cider Mill in South Glastonbury. Accepting the award for GOSA were President Joan Smith, Vice President Sidney Van Zandt, Treasurer Susan Sutherland and Director Whitney Adams.

Sheep Farm Award to GOSA

(l to r) DEP Commissioner Amey Marrella, GOSA President Joan Smith, Gov. Jodi Rell, GOSA Director Whitney Adams, Vice President Sidney VanZandt, and Treasurer Susan Sutherland

 GOSA is in the midst of a fund-raising drive to raise the $878,500 needed to buy the land from owner Groton Lenders LLC. It has applied for other grants and is seeking donations from individuals as well. GOSA’s option to buy the land expires Dec. 31, and GOSA is hoping to close well in advance of that date.

The Sheep Farm has a documented history going back to colonial times and was used for agriculture until about 2000. Its varied and scenic terrain features woodlands, meadows, cliff, boulders and Fort Hill Brook, which spills over a 10-foot ledge on the farm en route to Mumford Cove. For further information on the farm, click on the rectangular green button to the right of this story.

In another development affecting open space in Groton, the Town of Groton received a $650,000 grant for the purchase of the 30-acre Spicer-Pulaski property on Thomas Road. The award took place at a separate DEP ceremony in East Haddam.

The grants to Groton are part of $10.4 million being awarded this year to support 42 open space land purchases embracing 2,757 acres in 35 cities and towns across Connecticut, the DEP said.

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