Hockessin, Delaware

 

Welcome to the Red Clay Valley

    Just down the road from our store an old metal girder bridge crosses a flat section of the Red Clay Creek. The water back up here due to to a dam it's usage long forgotten. The Red Clay Watershed is the area of land which includes all tributaries, streams, creeks, ponds and lakes which flow into the Red Clay Creek.  The Red Clay Valley Watershed encompasses the following municipalities: East Marlborough Township, Kennett Township, New Garden Township, Kennett Borough and part of New Castle County. 

   The Red Clay Valley, through which 43 million gallons of water flow daily, encompasses fifty-five square miles of rolling hills, woodlands, and farms in Chester County, Pennsylvania and New Castle County, Delaware. The valley is the home of nearly 50,000 people who live in small towns and suburban and rural settings, as well as to businesses, parks, recreation sites and many of the world's famous mushroom farms. The Red Clay Valley has seen projects, such as the Red Clay Creek Cleanup, spray irrigation systems, a stream corridor and greenway program, and the Red Clay Trail.

    The Red Clay Valley Association (RCVA), the second oldest small watershed organization in America, was founded in 1952 by a group of Delaware and Pennsylvania residents for the purpose of protection and conservation of the natural resources in the Red Clay Watershed.The Red Clay Valley Association is committed to the conservation of all the natural resources in this area. RCVA is a non-profit, member supported, conservation organization  with offices located at the Myrick Conservation Center, a 318 acre property located in Pocopson Township between Unionville and West Chester. www.redclayvalley.org for more information about this organization.


Located on North Walnut Street, just off State Street,in Kennett Square, Anson B. Nixon Park is a hidden gem nestled just north of charming downtown Comprised of 106 acres, the Park was carved out of the historic woodlands of the late 18th through early 20th century Chambers estate. This natural setting includes two ponds, meandering streams of the Red Clay, woodlands including a beech grove with specimens dating back over 250 years, and three miles of walking trails. Nixon Park has many exciting events, including the annual Easter Egg Hunt, Trout Rodeo, Family Fun Day, and Free Summer Concert Series. Other events open to the public include concerts, dance performances, plays and nature programs. www.ansonbnixonpark.org


On the western branches of the Red Clay one land owner has created a nature preserve unique for our area. The Bucktoe Creek Preserve is designed for nature first and people second. This private land is open for specific events through the Delaware Nature Society and guided walks at appointed times. They generally have free guided bird walks Sunday and Monday mornings at 8am. www.bucktoecreekpreserve.org for more information. 


The mission of the Friends of Auburn Heights Preserve, Inc., is to educate the public firsthand about an American way of life that flourished at the dawn of the automotive age and to preserve historic steam automobile technology by teaching the practical skills of operating and maintaining steam cars.  Auburn Heights Preserve, includes the Marshall family home and carriage house listed on the National Register of Historic Places, site of the first Stanley automobile dealership in Delaware, a museum building housing a collection of vintage automobiles, a 1/8” size live steam train, operating on the property, and approximately 200 acres of surrounding park land. www.auburnheights.org

   Founded in 1964, the Delaware Nature Society is the pre-eminent non-profit environmental organization in the state. This position has been well earned through its long-term and consistently active preservation, conservation and advocacy programs. Delaware Nature Society is unique in the way it integrates education as a vital element in its role in preservation, conservation and advocacy. Currently, thousands of members support this important work and/or participate in programs while over 1,000 volunteers assist the 32 member core staff and interns so that annual programs continue to improve and increase. DNS has many programs for all age groups. They run classes from several locations throughout Delaware. Abbots Mill in Milford, Coverdale Farms, Ashland Nature Center and down on the Wilmington waterfront. www.delawarenaturesociety.org

The Mt. Cuba Center is a non-profit horticultural institution in northern Delaware located on nearly 600 acres. We’re dedicated to the study, conservation, and appreciation of plants native to the Appalachian Piedmont Region through garden display, education, and research. Our woodland wildflower gardens are recognized as the region’s finest. Walks, talks and tours are held year round. www.mtcubacenter.org

You can also attend monthly meetings of the Delaware Astronomy Club, which meets monthly at the Mount Cuba Observatory, the general public is invited to attend the for informal programs of general interest on selected Monday nights Short discusssions our followed by a tour of the facilities. When sky conditions permit, guests are invited to view the planets, moon or other objects through their telescope. Parking and seating are limited admission is by reservation only.Interested groups and individuals sholud contact the Observatory's secretary at 302-654-6407 any weekday morning before noon.


Further down stream is a modern park with a historic background. The Brandywine Springs Park began as an amusement park a hundred years ago. Folks use to travel from Wilmington and Pennsylvania for picnicing and fun. Some would come by trolley while others would make it a day trip in their new automobile. The Friends are a group dedicated to the preservation of Brandywine Springs Amusement Park, an early 20th Century amusement park in Wilmington, Delaware. They have meetings once a month at The Cedars United Methodist Church, Maple and Harrison Avenues, The Cedars (off of Route 41). Please come and join us! Or visit the park, walk the trail and listen for ghostly echoes from long ago. Located at the corner of Route 41 and Faulkland Road

Since 1867, the Wilmington & Western Railroad has served the communities along the Red Clay Creek, first as a for-profit transportation route for freight and passengers, and now as a non-profit, historic tourist railroad. Today the Wilmington & Western railroad continues to operate regular steam- and diesel-powered tourist trains on our full 10-miles of track between Greenbank and Hockessin so that future generations will have a living awareness of the culture, history, industry and beauty of the Red Clay Valley. They have seasonal and holiday rides for kids of all ages. For a complete listing of their yearly calendar of events and rides go to: www.wwrr.com