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Pascal Offers Use of Bozman Refuge

Oct 18, 2011 10:06PM ● Published by Anonymous

True to his commitment to share the bounty when first he purchased the property, Bob Pascal has opened the gates of his sprawling waterfront refuge in Bozman, so that others could benefit. The students of Wye River Upper School have been offered the use of the property as an outdoor classroom. Their inaugural outing included one night spent in the converted hunting lodge.

Known historically as the former Dupont Audubon Sanctuary, Pascal is working to cultivate the acreage as an educational and retreat center, available to an array of groups and non-profits. “There is unlimited potential to study bay ecology here at this property that is nearly untouched by human hands,” says WRUS science teacher Karen Lombardi. With the support of WRUS Director of Education Nicole Sophocles and Pascal, Lombardi had free rein to plan a two-day intensive study.

The juniors and seniors of WRUS paddled the shoreline of Balls Creek by kayak, observing habitats of the shallow waters. Greater depths were pursued upon the commercial fishing boat “Harvester” out of Neavitt. Students climbed aboard and cruised while observing a demonstration of oyster tonguing by Captain Harrison Spurry on board the Harvester.

By land, studies focused on the topography of a few of the 1000 acres, with an eye toward return trips to map the existing trails, using GPS technology. Students brought cameras to capture images they will use as a model for watercolors they’ll paint back in the classroom.

A highlight of their trip was a visit from Department of Natural Resources Officer Drew Wilson who spoke about efforts to protect the species in and around the bay. His talk intrigued the teenaged listeners, many of whom now aspire to landing a job like his.

Working closely with WRUS Executive Director Chrissy Aull, Pascal offered the property to the school’s Board of Trustees, where they recently held their 2011 Annual Retreat. Upon hearing that the teachers have great plans, he told Aull to present him with the teacher’s visions, with the goal of accommodating their plans. Lombardi and her students have since prepared a proposal outlining their goals as well as offers of service to improve the property.

For information: chrissyaull@wyeriverupperschool.org

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