Marlborough officials celebrate long awaited Callahan State Park expansion

298

Announcement follows City Council purchase approval last month

By Dakota Antelman, Managing Editor

Callahan State Park stretches out across Marlborough, Sudbury and Framingham near where a plot of park land was recently acquired through a joint purchase by city and state entities.
Callahan State Park stretches out across Marlborough, Sudbury and Framingham near where a plot of park land was recently acquired through a joint purchase by city and state entities.

MARLBOROUGH – A parcel of land long sought by city and state officials is now formally a part of Callahan State Park, the office of Marlborough Mayor Arthur Vigeant announced July 2.

This news came roughly a month after the City Council approved a request from Vigeant to support a state effort to expand the park. Specifically, Vigeant sought $150,000 from Marlborough’s Stabilization-Open Space account to chip in for what was ultimately a $1.5 million price tag. 

The state Department of Conservation and Reservation (DCR) contributed $500,000. An additional Land and Water Fund Grant secured by the DCR locked in an extra $750,000. The Sudbury Valley Trustees contributed the remaining $100,000.

Callahan State Park overlaps Marlborough, Sudbury and Framingham with a small portion also jutting into Southborough. It’s accessible through several miles of trails and a dog park, among other amenities. 

This recently purchased land is located off Parmenter Road and directly abuts the park. Existing trails already pass through the property. In making this purchase, officials say they’re excited to ensure that the public will continue to have access to those trails. 

Vigeant wrote in his initial funding request to the City Council that Marlborough had already tried to buy the parcel on three occasions. 

“The City has been interested in this land for quite some time, and we are appreciative that the O’Donnell family decided to allow us to purchase it to preserve it as conservation and recreational space for the public to enjoy,” he said in the July 2 press release. 

Photo/Via Jamie Eldridge, Facebook
Senator Jamie Eldridge stands with Colie O’Donnell, the now former owner of land added to Callahan State Park. Eldridge recently thanked O’Donnell for making the sale.
Photo/Via Jamie Eldridge, Facebook

The day before the Mayor’s announcement, the property’s now former owner Colie O’Donnell appeared in a Facebook post with Senator Jamie Eldridge (D-Acton), who visited O’Donnell’s Spring Hill Farm to thank him for making the sale. 

“Such a jewel for Marlborough residents, and the Metrowest region,” Eldridge remarked in that post, referring to the property.

Eldridge also noted the historical significance of the tract, reiterating facts that City Councilors shared as they unanimously approved transferring funds to contribute to this purchase. 

During the Revolutionary War, Henry Knox snuck through the area with his caravan of stolen British cannons as he sought to evade patrolling redcoats. 

Having closed their deal, officials are touting what they describe as an example of effective collaboration between agencies.

“It is a beautiful piece of property, and we are so thrilled it is now permanently protected for now and future generations to explore and enjoy,” Marlborough Conservation/Sustainability officer Priscilla Ryder said in the mayor’s press release. 

 

RELATED CONTENT:

City Council approves funding for Callahan State Park expansion (communityadvocate.com)

Mayor Vigeant seeks funding to enlarge Callahan State Park  – (communityadvocate.com)