“Head of Tide Park, and the 12-year saga of how it came to be”
July 1, 2018
Angela Twitchell and Pam LeDuc joined Mary Pols at Head of Tide Park to delve into the details of the newly opened park in Topsham.
Unless they are avid readers of the local land trust’s newsletter, the picnickers would be unlikely to know it took 12 years, at least 11 funders, multiple land purchases, easements granted by neighbors, rounds of grant writing and applications, and coordination among federal, state and local agencies – including the local fire department – to make it happen. Head of Tide Park looks like it has been part of the Topsham landscape forever, but it has been officially open only for a month.
How it came to be is a classic tale of American land conservation, a lot of patience and a vision to see beyond mildewed buildings and into a day like this one, where a family is picnicking, a man on a bicycle stops to sit in the shade, another reads a sign explaining the history of the place and two women launch a kayak to head upstream, into what had been secret to many – the beauty of a place where the tides from Merrymeeting Bay push deep into the land to meet the fresh water of the Cathance River.
Water cascades over rocks where the Cathance River meets Merrymeeting Bay at the Head of Tide Park in Topsham. It took 12 years to carve The town’s first waterfront park. Now the whole park is owned by Topsham, with a conservation easement held by the Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust. Staff photos by Gregory Rec
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