Annual Event Celebrates Upper Valley Working Lands & Wild Places

MERIDEN, NH—“When one family conserves acreage that is to be admired. When many neighbors together conserve a whole rural landscape, it is a powerful statement of shared values and recognition that collectively we can accomplish so much more.” It has been twelve years, since Dick Ramsden used those words to explain why he conserved his property. Today, the Upper Valley Land Trust (UVLT) holds conservation agreements on approximately 400 parcels of land in 44 communities. Thousands of people have participated in UVLT’s mission since the Trust was founded in 1985. Their stories and accomplishments will be shared and celebrated on June 3, in Meriden…

UVLT invites supporters, friends, neighbors, and community members to join staff and Trustees for its annual celebration and membership meeting. Kimball Union Academy has generously donated space for the June 3rd event entitled: Tales from the Field. The event emphasizes the tremendous value that the region’s working lands and wild places add to its quality of life.

The schedule of activities for the day (weather permitting) includes a 3:30pm hike on French’s Ledges, a UVLT conserved trail in Meriden—it is a steep climb, but persistent participants will be rewarded by spectacular views. A guided bus tour of UVLT conserved lands in Sullivan County is available to those traveling from Hanover or Lebanon; it will leave at 3:30pm. Those interested in participating in either of these afternoon activities can register and learn more by calling or emailing Nora at (603) 643-6626 ext. 102, or, by May 25th.

At 5:30pm, appetizers, cold drinks, and displays will be featured—UVLT staff will be available to provide current information about land conservation in the region, resources for landowners, and upcoming events. Local cheeses provided by Blythedale Farm and Jericho Hill Farm will be served. Patrick Dakin, Brew Master at the Norwich Inn, will pour Jasper Murdock’s Ales; some regional wines will also be enjoyed.

While partaking of these refreshments, guests will be invited to place bids on homegrown gifts in a silent auction to benefit UVLT. This year’s auction includes: a sunset champagne cruise on Canaan Street Lake (with loon sighting guaranteed), a “study” illustration from Big & Little, accompanied by the book itself by John Stadler, a handmade box by Garrett Hack of Thetford, a boat ride up the Connecticut River with John Carroll of Norwich, Farnum Hill Cider, Taylor Brothers’ Maple Syrup, Garfield’s Smokehouse Cheese, King Arthur Cookbooks, and many more locally crafted items! Everything in the auction has been donated by friends and neighbors who support land conservation in the region. View a complete list of items at:

Local ingredients will be the focal point of a casual dinner, $15 per person, beginning at 6:30pm. Seasonal produce will be provided by these area farms: Blue Ox Farm (Enfield, NH), Edgewater Farm (Plainfield, NH), Cedar Circle Farm (Thetford, VT), MacLennan Farm (Windsor, VT), and Four Corners Farm (Newbury, VT). Weather permitting; dinner will finish with first of the season strawberry shortcake and fresh whipped cream!

Following dinner, the program will consist of Tales from the Field: conservation stories told by Upper Valley landowners and volunteers. These will be reflective and inspiring accounts of the region’s working lands and natural areas. The evening’s speakers will provide insight into the motivations that lead to the conservation of the Upper Valley’s special places. During the awards portion of the evening, Meriden’s own, Steve Taylor, longtime New Hampshire Agriculture Commissioner will be honored for his work in conservation. In addition, Norwich’s Shiela Swett will be recognized for her nature photography, as well as her support of UVLT’s efforts.

For more information, or to reserve your seat, contact Nora Doyle-Burr at or (603) 643-6626, by May 25th.