FULTON, NY – Dick Drosse, of the Friends of Great Bear organization, spoke to the Fulton Noon Rotary Club at a recent meeting.
Drosse was introduced by Rotarian Charrise Kidd.
The Great Bear Recreation Area is composed of 432 acres of nature and trails about four miles south of Fulton.
The 432 acres is actually owned by four entities: the city of Fulton, the town of Volney, the New York State Canal Corpoation, and a private owner.
The Friends of Great Bear are actually in the process of kicking off a $150,000 campaign to purchase the 150 acres owned by a private owner, which, when completed, will be managed by the town of Volney.
Drosse passed out a brochure that explained the history of the land.
The Great Springs waterworks at one time, in the early 20th century, shipped natural spring water by railroad throughout the Eastern United States.
In 1910, a thousand apple and cherry trees were planted on site and a commercial fruit operation sold fruit, apple cider, and other farm products.
In addition to this fund raising initiative, the Friends of Great Bear is busy acting as stewards of the multiple trails and have built numerous bridges and bog bridges over watery and muddy sections of the trails.
One of the trails is even one of the original towpaths of the 1828 Oswego Canal.
The Friends of Great Bear does great work maintaining this area for all of our use.