See our video introducing you to the The O'Hara Nature Center located at 170 Mountain Road, Irvington.
In 2003, the Village entered into an inter-municipal agreement with the County of Westchester for the purchase of 26 acres of parkland known as the Westwood Preserve. In exchange for $3 million from the County, several conditions and requirements were imposed on the Village. Among those was the creation of a Nature Center in the vicinity of the existing home at 170 Mountain Road.
Since then, the Village has been seeking funding to assist with the creation of the Nature Center. In 2008, with the help of Congresswoman Nita Lowey, a $239,000 federal, non-matching grant through the U.S. Department of Energy was secured. While this funding was much-needed, it was not quite enough to create a fully-functioning Nature Center. To help make the Nature Center a reality, the Village has enlisted the help of countless volunteers. Despite the offers from volunteers, a funding gap still existed, until the O'Hara Foundation stepped in.
The O'Hara Foundation has generously pledged up to $60,000 to close the funding gap in the creation of the Nature Center.
There will be nine demonstration gardens surrounding the O’Hara Nature Center which will provide beauty and environmental benefits to the landscape. Each contains curriculum-related content for educational programs and examples for the suburban landscape. Of these nine, five have already been funded. The remaining gardens which need sponsorship are the xeriscape and rock garden, the edible forest garden, the shade garden, and the woodland garden. Sponsorship, which will also come with naming opportunities, is $5,000 per garden. These gardens cannot be installed until funding is available. Get more information (PDF) on each garden available for sponsorship. Contact Joe Archino at 591-7736 with any questions or if interested on sponsoring.