Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

March 14, 2013

Many spots, seasons for kids to enjoy the outdoors

The Andover Townsman

---- — When it comes to kids and outdoor recreation in Andover, many people think of Recreation Park and Pomps Pond during the warmer months. But the combination of conservation land, and open space owned by the Trustees of Reservations and the Andover Village Improvement Society mean there are thousands of acres and miles of trails that kids and their families can explore year round.

There are also both rivers and ponds where people of all ages can canoe, kayak or fish with the proper license. Kids can go sledding at a variety of spots, including at the Ward Reservation off Prospect Road, a popular spot during the annual Winter Fun Day.

The Andover Conservation Commission also offers overnight camping at Serio’s Grove Reservation, at 53 Lowell Junction Road, as part of its effort to encourage more recreational use of the town’s open space.

Camping can be done throughout the year, with permission from the town. The conservation land and its grounds and picnic tables are not open for public camping. People interested in camping must contact the Conservation Division before camping, and a volunteer will stay with the group.

Bob Decelle, who runs special projects for the Conservation Commission, has said new Andover campers, including families with young kids, will find Serio’s Grove useful because if they encounter problems, they’ll only be a few minutes from home.

The next overnight campout planned for Serio’s Grove will be April 27. Other overnight campouts planned for this year will be on May 25, June 22, July 20, Aug. 17, Sept. 21 and Oct. 19.

People interested in more information or in signing up to be part of a campout should contact the town’s Conservation Division by calling 978-623-8311, said Decelle.

This winter 17 people stopped in for a planned, cold-weather camping experience at Serio’s Grove, with eight sleeping overnight.

Floyd Greenwood camped with his sons Floyd, Kyle and Ryan. He said the family enjoys outdoor activities, including fishing year round. They went ice fishing on Foster’s Pond earlier this winter with people involved with the town’s conservation department.

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