Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Pitching In For Wintergreen Park Clean-Up & Cookout

Laura Bellinger at Devil’s Hole.

On Saturday, May 18, the Friends of Wintergreen Park sponsored a Clean Up and Community Cookout. It seemed like a good cause, so I grabbed a pair of gloves and a rake, and joined them.  This is a grassroots group of volunteers who love this park located in Canajoharie, NY. As explained on their Facebook page, Canajoharie is named for the “Boiling Pot” located in the Wintergreen Park gorge. Canajoharie means “a kettle stuck on a pole.”

A modern etymology translates it as “a washed kettle” or “the pot that washes itself.” It refers to swirling actions of water in a large circular pothole in the Canajoharie Creek near where it empties into the Mohawk River. This dedicated group of volunteers emphasized that this park is “Carry In/Carry Out.”  In order for this beautiful site to remain open to the public, it’s important that visitors treat this special place as our “common home.”

The Boiling Pot. Photo by Laura Bellinger.

women with rakes

Volunteers Laura, Lori, and Sharon. Sharon leads lengthy bicycle trips for the Mohawk
Valley Alpiners. Photo by Laura Bellinger.

Volunteer Elijah Schaffer. Photo by Laura Bellinger.

My mother and I joined members of the Mohawk Valley Alpiners last September on a 40 degree morning to hike the gorge.  We crossed the water many times–brrr! The hike was well worth it, for the scenery alone.

Local musician Mickey Boslet kept us entertained. Photo by Laura Bellinger.

If you decide to visit Wintergreen, consider a meal at the Keep Right Cafe, which describes itself as “eco-friendly and sustainable. We love Earth and invite you to learn how easy and cost effective reducing your footprint can be through our retail offerings. Items for sale (and their packaging!) feature biodegradable, compostable, reusable, and renewable products. We also love to promote locally made retail items.”

The Cafe’s name is an homage to the “dummy” light that stood in the center of Canajoharie for years.  It was damaged by a truck and many people hope that the traffic light will be repaired and restored to its historical spot.

Photo at top: Laura Bellinger at Devil’s Hole.

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I am a retired teacher who enjoys the outdoors, especially the Adirondacks. My parents took us camping when we were kids, then we attended 4-H Camp in Speculator (a former CCC camp). As an adult, I served on the Camp board for 8 years. I went to my friend's camp in Bloomingdale (Saranac) for 10 years. We enjoyed cross country skiing, canoeing, fishing, snowshoeing, etc. I still hike, cross country and downhill ski, snowshoe. I bicycle and ride a Harley. I play the organ at a 300 year old church.




2 Responses

  1. Deb Johnson says:

    Great job Ms. B! Love the pictures and the article! Nicely done👏

  2. laura bellinger says:

    Thanks, Mrs. J.!!!

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