photo of the day (great hollow is blooming)

This Spring I make the trip up to Great Hollow in New Fairfield 3 days a week. On Mondays both kids are in a Coop but I’m a drop-off mom so I don’t have to stay. On Tuesdays, Nick has his Wilderness Skills class and I have a morning Yogalates class before I head home to do school work with Clare. Wednesdays are another coop day for Clare and me. So I have 3 lovely opportunities to soak up the beauty of Great Hollow.

The landscape and people of Great Hollow have been a part of our lives for at least three years now and I can’t express how enriched our lives are because of it. My children, especially my son, have spent many days there, learning to love, respect and care for the land. The instructors at Great Hollow have helped to teach skills that are being lost in our reliance on the many conveniences of our modern age. In a time when so many young people spend hours in front of a computer screen or a television, or even participating in organized activities or sports, Great Hollow allows them to spend hours learning in the woods.

Unfortunately, the Regional Y who owns the property and offers the outstanding programs available to the homeschooling community, is putting this amazing resource up for sale. There is the great possibility that after this coming Winter, we will no longer be able to partake in the beauty and wonder that is Great Hollow. The Y is operating (aren’t we all?) with a budget deficit and while Great Hollow isn’t even it’s lowest revenue producing site, selling it is the only way they can think of to come up with enough capital to cover their debt and be able to have some cash to repair their other properties, some of which are operating at a bigger loss than Great Hollow. It’s a short sighted move in my opinion. The Y will be able to repair a roof or two and pay off a few bills with the money they get from the sale but they will have sold a resource that they can never get back and in a year or two, unless they dramatically change the way they run things, they will probably be in the same hole they are in now.

The 800 some acres that make up Great Hollow’s property is being sold for a very low price (ok, I couldn’t come up with that kind of cash but it’s a relatively low price for that amount of acreage.)

The upside (at least I hope it’s an upside) is that the property has some strict zoning laws that hopefully will keep it from being developed. The downside is who would want to buy 800 acres of land that can’t be developed?

In our hopes and dreams, someone with a vision of keeping the land pure and pristine, swoops in, buys it and continues to offer it up for the incredible resource that it is. And better yet, builds on the abundance of opportunity that Great Hollow presents.

So if you know someone who has a love of the land, a desire to instill that love in the coming generations and a few dollars to spare, let them know about Great Hollow. Losing that kind of a resource will create a hole in our community that will be awfully hard to fill.

~ by photobella on 29 April, 2010.

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