Education is central to our mission and a feature of every use of the site will be educational programs that complement and strengthen the agricultural, recreational, and solar energy aspects.
This aspect of the mission is already in motion, with solid partnerships developing between GBFG and local public and private schools and camps. Work crews from places like the Berkshire School, Simon’s Rock College, SBRSD, BHRSD, Camp Hi Rock, Camp Half Moon, the John Dewey Academy and the Fay School have been regular parts of the ongoing clean-up effort.
A partnership with the Teen Leadership group at Mt Everett high school led to a terrific student-designed pamphlet used for PR all summer; elementary school students from Muddy Brook worked on a seed-saving project last spring; visiting students from the NYU film program and a research project by a Simon’s Rock student–all these speak to the tremendous potential for outreach and engagement with students of all ages.
Future plans include one of the centrally located existing buildings being refurbished to create a site museum and on-site classroom, with displays and literature to inform the visitor about the site’s historic and contemporary uses and environmental riches.
Throughout the site there will be signs and markers describing habitats, resident species, geology and historical significance. Groups from area schools will be encouraged to visit the Fairgrounds for lectures and exhibits. Work-study programs will engage students in activities such as identifying invasive species, exploring agricultural best practices, identification and monitoring of rare and endangered species, historical research on indigenous populations, the evolution of the Housatonic River, and site geology.