Blackstone Parks Conservancy

On the Boulevard

If you are one of the thousands who walk or run on the Boulevard Park, you may have seen a gentleman resembling a greatly slimmed down Santa Claus digging holes in the path this summer. This was Colgate Searle, the distinguished landscape architect who lends his expertise to the Blackstone Parks Conservancy (BPC).

Constructed by the city in the early 1990s where a trolley once ran, the path urgently needs repair. As chair of the BPC’s Boulevard Committee, Colgate is trying to identify the composition of the path—which varies from section to section—in order to figure out how best to repair it.

You will be hearing more about Colgate’s ideas for the Boulevard’s preservation and maintenance this fall. His leadership augurs well for the future of this popular destination for city residents.

And while you wait for the next concerts (see dates below), keep enjoying the park. Each year new trees are added by the Conservancy, which works in partnership with the Providence Parks Department. The latter does the mowing of the park while Groundwork Rhode Island mulches and waters the young trees with funds donated by Conservancy members and managed by BPC volunteers.


In the Conservation District


After years of planning and preparation—weed demolition by a troupe of goats and fence building by volunteers as well as the provision of stumps to sit on–the circle designed just for children and known as RiverWood officially opened in June. The brainchild of Elena Riverstone and the Education Committee, the circle sits just inside the woods opposite the Narragansett Boat Club on River Road.

A throng of children enlivened the field choosing from an array of offerings. Some played field games while others worked on the Wetu or did face painting. Luis Arias from the RI Philharmonic Music School played the drums and local actor Chris Byrnes (who may often be found at Books on the Square) was invited inside the magic circle to read aloud to a group of enthralled listeners.



ParkKeeping this year is organized for the convenience of volunteers wanting some activity for an hour or so at the end of the weekday. So far they have been enormously helpful in maintaining the center section of Blackstone Park. See our website for the next date. And bring your children.


Jane Peterson