The Friends of Letchworth State Park is a not-for-profit corporation chartered under the laws of the State of New York. Our activities are supported by private funds raised by membership dues, fundraising events, donations, gifts, memorials, grants, and the sale of publications and items to the public. We do not receive federal or state funds for our day-to-day activities. We have received several state grants for specific projects and have applied for others. All of our Trustees, Officers, and Members are unpaid volunteers.
Letchworth State Park is located in Western New York State, south of Rochester and east of Buffalo. The park is named for William Pryor Letchworth, the founder of this unique and scenic park. The park is bisected by the Genesee River which flows in a deep gorge in the park as it runs north from Pennsylvania to Lake Ontario. The Park contains over 14,000 acres of mixed woods, fields, ponds, wetlands, and the largest river gorge east of the Mississippi River. The park is also a refuge for many animals and birds including deer, bears, and Bald Eagles. There is also a great variety of trees, shrubs, and wildflowers. Several of the shrubs and wildflowers in the park are listed as endangered. Some of the largest trees in New York State are located in the nearly inaccessible areas of the park where they were safe from lumbering.
The Friends of Letchworth State Park was first chartered in 2000 and has completed a number of projects that has helped to preserve and improve the park including the purchase of playground equipment that was installed in several picnic and camping areas.
The Friends have also purchased a statue that commemorates the work of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) within Letchworth State Park. The CCC constructed roads, bridges, cabins, water supply systems, hiking trails, and miles of beautiful stone walls along the roads and trails in park. Visitors can view the statue located at the Lower Falls area of the park and learn about the CCC's contribution to the building of this beautiful public facility. The Friends have restored a CCC lean-to at the North end of the park, two fireplace chimneys which were part of the Officers Quarters at the Gibsonville CCC Camp and the Great Bend CCC Camp, and 10 CCC built stone picnic tables on the East side of the park near the shelter. During the summer and fall of 2022, Contractors, hired by The Friends, restored 29 CCC built stone picnic tables at the Wolf Creek, Tea Table and Eddy's Picnic Areas. We were honored to have been able to host the National CCC Gathering during September 2019 at Letchworth State Park.
The Friends are also active in the preservation of the history of the park and the surrounding area. We have raised funds to help restore the Council Grounds area of the park. The Council Grounds area contains a Native American Council House, a historic cabin, and the statue and grave of Mary Jemison, the "White Woman of the Genesee". The Council Grounds are located near William Pryor Letchworth's former home now known as the Glen Iris Inn. William Pryor Letchworth donated his estate containing over 1,000 acres of land to New York state in 1907. Subsequent acquisitions of land have increased the total area of this park to over 14,000 acres.
Some of our other projects and activities include: co-sponsoring the annual "First Day Hike" on January 1st and "I Love My Park Day" in May along with the park; sponsoring an annual "Teddy Bear Family Picnic Day" in July and "CCC Legacy Day" in August, and doing trail maintenance work.
We are presently raising funds to restore over 20 CCC Built historic stone picnic tables located at the Upper Falls picnic area.
A contribution to The Friends of Letchworth State Park will greatly help to preserve and improve this natural treasure for future generations.
We focus on: The Environment, Education
Where we are: Livingston, Wyoming
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