PRESS RELEASE: Planting Continues at “Reconnecting Rivers” Dana Dam Removal Celebration

New Haven, CT – Last weekend kicked off the first in a series of volunteer planting days at the former site of Dana Dam, the next to be held at the “Reconnecting Rivers” Dana Dam Removal Celebration on May 4.  

Over 40 volunteers showed up to help plant more than 125 native trees and shrubs at the former site of Dana Dam, marking a landmark moment in the dam removal project.  

“Planting these trees and shrubs (almost 40 different species!) bring the project all together,” says Alex Krofta, ecological restoration project manager at Save the Sound. “We are creating a diverse habitat for riparian wildlife, while also stabilizing banks, filtering run-off, and shading the river for fish. When the community helps with planting, they get to experience this ecosystem and connect to the river in a hands-on way.” 

Dana Dam was built in the early 1940s by Charles Dana to create a recreational pond and for 80 years, the dam (and others like it along the Norwalk River) blocked movement of fish and river wildlife, increased water temperatures, and submerged the natural floodplain of the river. The dam’s removal during the week of September 11, 2023, reconnected 10 miles of river habitat.  

Learn more about the story of Dana Dam on our blog here. 

Please join Save the Sound, Trout Unlimited, and the Town of Wilton to celebrate the removal of Dana Dam (aka Strong Pond Dam). This celebration event will include tree planting, remarks from the Town of Wilton, Save the Sound, and Trout Unlimited, as well as a guided site walk and light refreshments. 

Volunteers at last weekend’s Dana Dam planting

Reconnecting Rivers: Dana Dam Removal Celebration  

Date: Saturday, May 4, 2024  
Time: 9 a.m. Volunteer Planting; 11 a.m. Project Celebration & Site Walk  
Address: Merwin Meadows Park, 52 Lovers Lane, Wilton, CT 06897  

Register to attend the Site Celebration here. 

What to Expect:  

9:00 a.m. – Volunteer Planting: Contribute to the restoration efforts by participating in our tree planting event.   

11:00 a.m. – Project Celebration: If you’re not joining the planting event, please arrive by 11 a.m. and head towards the Dana Dam removal site. Our staff will greet you in the parking area.  

11:15 a.m. – Remarks: Hear from Alex Krofta, Save the Sound’s Ecological Restoration Project Manager, Toni Boucher, the Town of Wilton’s First Selectman, and Gerald Berrafati from Trout Unlimited.  

11:30 a.m. – Optional Site Walk: Join us for a guided walk to learn more about the restored site or continue enjoying refreshments.  

12:00 p.m. – Event Conclusion  

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