Members of the Rocky Hill Hiking Club picked up litter, hauled away trash and cleared trails at the Dividend Brook Industrial Archaeological District Saturday morning.
Seventeen volunteers spent three hours cleaning up the former industrial park where horseshoes, lumber, toys and garden hoes, among other things, were once produced. The group removed four tires, three Christmas trees, a lawn mower, 17 bags of garbage and “a billion branches” from the area, according to an email from Rocky Hill Hiking Club Organizer Ed Chiucarello. They also blew leaves off one path and lined another one that leads to the Buckley Dam with huge tree stumps, he added.
“It was a spectacular day spent at a gorgeous place,” Chiucarello said. “I'm so thankful that 17 people volunteered their time to improve Dividend.”
Chiucarello is expected to contact Park and Recreation Department Director Lisa Zerio this week to have the remainder of the trash hauled away from the site. He will make a presentation to the Town Council Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Town Hall.
In 2002, amateur archaeologist June Cooke, along with the friends of the Office of Connecticut Archaeology, conducted a dig in Dividend Park. In 2004, the land was designated as a state archaeological preserve and was placed on the State Historic Register after years of research and review.
Nick Bellatoni of the Office of Connecticut Archaeology and archaeology consultant Bruce Greene provided insight to Chiucarello and other members of the Rocky Hill Hiking Club during a hike at Dividend Park on Feb. 11.
Club members hiked the Dividend brook and waterfall area on Jan. 28. The group will hike Quarry Park on Feb 26 at 1:30 p.m. Hikers are asked to meet at the parking lot for Quarry Park on Old Main St. next to the Duke of Cumberland Inn and Matteson Ave.
The group will clean the state archaeological preserve again on March 3. Anyone interested in helping is asked to contact Chiucarello, by emailing him at email@example.com.
Chiucarello wants to hold a grand opening for Dividend Park on June 2. The public would be invited to the event and he would lead a hike through the trail loop.