The Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center purchased a tractor for use on its Pequotsepos Road and Coogan Farm properties with the help of the area’s Rotary Clubs.

The Rotary Clubs of Mystic, The Stoningtons, Groton, New London, Waterford and Montville,  along with a matching donation by the Southern Connecticut Rotary District, provided a grant of $15,955 to help the Nature Center purchase the tractor. In addition to being an important addition to the Giving Garden at Coogan Farm, the tractor means that the Nature Center will no longer have to contract out for annual meadow and brush mowing, or hire special equipment to assist with trail improvements, invasive species removal, pruning and other habitat and landscape maintenance projects. The Giving Garden provides fresh locally grown produce to the Gemma E. Moran United Way/Labor Food Center.

“We have dreamed about a tractor for years, and now, thanks to our local Rotarians, it has become a reality. It’s a beautiful machine, perfectly suited to our needs,” said Maggie Jones, executive director of the Nature Center. “Already she has helped us prepare the Garden for planting, and we have a long list of projects ahead.”

The tractor has been dubbed “Clara” in honor of the late Clara Morgan Coogan, who once lived on the Coogan Farm.

“This is a shining example of the work we do as Rotarians,” said Jacob Hanley, president elect of the Mystic Rotary Club. “It has been a collaborative effort among multiple clubs and we are delighted to support the DPNC, and be part of such a positive project in the community.”

“This new tractor will significantly increase the yield of fresh produce from the Coogan Farm to needy families across Southeastern Connecticut,” said Bill Smith, Rotary Club of Mystic board member.

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