Every forest and park 
needs Friends

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November 18, 2015

The Massachusetts Forest and Park
Friends Network

The Massachusetts Forest and Park Friends Network is a grassroots organization of volunteer Friends networking for greater advocacy, better protection and enhancement of Massachusetts’ forests, parks, beaches and trails. The Friends Network facilitates communication between Friends groups, all volunteers to state parklands and the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR). Parklands thrive under the special care that Friends groups provide.

Join or start a friends group. Help Massachusetts achieve a Friends group for every state forest and park. If we can help, let us know by contacting a Friends Network facilitator.

Visit the Friends Network on Facebook

What Are Friends For?

The 8th Annual Friends Network Gathering
Saturday, December 5, 2015
8:30 am to 3:00 pm
Registration and morning refreshments begin at 8:30 am. The program begins at 9:30 am
Upton VFW Post 5594
15 Milford Street, Upton, MA

Friends Network Announces Key Speaker for the Friends Gathering

Whitney Hatch, Chairman
Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation Stewardship Council

We all agree; "One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood." Lucius Annaeus Seneca ~65AD

With that spirit in mind, we invite you to join your friends as we meet Whitney Hatch, Chairman of the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation's Stewardship Council and a Board Member of the Trust for Public Land.

Mr. Hatch is currently serving his second seven-year term on the Stewardship Council and is the author of the May, 2015 Boston Globe Op Ed, Massachusetts' parks are falling into ruin.

You may direct questions to Mr. Hatch in advance by sending them to friend@networkingfriends.net

Share Your Groups Events and Programs! Sign up to make a presentation when you register.

Register Online Here            Register by Mail Here

View the Draft Agenda

Your presentations will be added to the agenda on a first-come-first-served basis, so please register early.

Part of our program continues the conversation where we left off at last year's Gathering of Friends. Your Friends Group will have a chance to share the public programs and events that you've organized in cooperation with the DCR or that occur in DCR areas. Friends will have time (5, 10 or 15 minutes), to talk about their best programs/events for the public (and DCR).

DCR Partnerships Director and Partnerships Matching Funds Program Coordinator Tom Reece will join us in the afternoon for a discussion of the Volunteer Program Guide and the Matching Funds program.

Nominations are open for the 2015 Friends Network Volunteer and the DCR Friend of the Year Awards. Submit your nominations by November 27 using the online form when you register for the Gathering. Register Here

The Friends Network Volunteer of the Year Award is bestowed upon an individual or group who deserves special recognition for extraordinary work on behalf of DCR forests, parks, beaches or trails. Qualifications for the Friends Network Volunteer of the Year Award my include: developed or maintained a program; maintained grounds/facilities; helped preserve cultural and/or natural resources/wildlife; recruited new volunteers; assisted in growing and developing the group's community profile; engaged new members and sponsors; demonstrated outstanding leadership.

The Friends Network DCR Friend of the Year Award is presented yearly to Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) employees or agencies that have demonstrated exemplary effort on behalf of Massachusetts' forests, parks, beaches and trails, or Friends groups. All DCR employees are eligible for this award. The award is based on excellence in the following areas: work performance; judgment; initiative integrity support for friends groups citizen/community relations.




View highlights from the Massachusetts Forest and Park Friends Network 7th Annual Conference: Focus on Conservation, Saturday, December 6, 2014, Upton, Massachusetts

View the Friends Network 2014 DCR Friends of Year Award recipients here

Special Features

Report from the Trust for Public Land, The Return on Investment in Parks and Open Space in Massachusetts.

Search the Friends Network database for the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) Properties that have or need Friends: MFPFN DCR Properties and Friends Groups Database

OUR APOLOGIES: The Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EOEEA) replaced all of the websites of the agencies under their jurisdiction. As a result, many of the previous links to the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR), MassWildlife and other EOEEA  agencies' websites no longer work from this site. We will be updating links as time permits but it is a huge job. If you need specific information that you cannot find, please send an email to friend@networkingfriends.net and we will try to direct you.