Author Archives: Eileen Samberg

Dark Skies Initiative

Light pollution is an ever growing problem as land is continuously developed. Without an eye towards the future, open land conservation, and responsible lighting choices, we’ll lose what little we have left on the planet for truly dark skies.

Visit our page under Resources to learn about the Dark Skies initiative in Southborough.

Annual SOLF Appeal underway

Open space, with fields and woods, streams, and wetlands, greatly enhances our quality of life here in Southborough, providing diverse habitat and quiet woodland trails. As Fall arrives, the Southborough Open Land Foundation (SOLF) Board is excited to share with you some of our accomplishments from this past year.

  • Working with the Open Space Preservation Commission to establish a native plant pollinator garden at Beals Preserve
  • Sponsoring the 6th Annual Art on the Trails at Beals Preserve
  • Creating a small parking area in the Main Street Field at Beals Preserve for
    safer access to the property
  • Working with volunteers to clear invasive plants and improve trails at Beals
    Preserve, Bigelow Wildlife Refuge, and Clark Grove
  • Running a successful challenge to help fund the newly created Linda Hubley
    Memorial Town Scholarship
  • Holding our annual meeting with well-known naturalist Peter Alden as the
    featured speaker

Your support is essential to helping us keep up this positive momentum. Now that we are again able to meet in person, we are eager to resume offering some nature-based programs. Please consider a tax-deductible contribution to support our efforts that help make Southborough such an attractive and unique community.

SOLF is a private, non-profit 501 (c)(3) land trust that serves the citizens of Southborough. Since our founding in 1988, we have preserved nearly 200 acres of land. SOLF does not receive any tax-based support from the town or the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

The Trustees of SOLF

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SOLF Trail Use Policy for Beals Preserve

Beals Preserve is privately owned and maintained by SOLF.
We welcome public use from dawn to dusk. Please respect our Trail Use Policy.

  • Trails are for walking, jogging, cross country skiing, and snowshoeing.
  • Dogs are permitted but must be on leash; dog waste must be picked up.
  • No motorized vehicles are permitted except for maintenance by SOLF.
  • No bicycles are permitted.

Click here to learn about Beals Preserve. Click here for a trail map of Beals Preserve.

Cub Scout Pack 1 Service Projects at Beals Preserve and Templeman

On Sunday, November 20, Cub Scout Pack 1 learned about and practiced trail maintenance at two of our properties, Beals Preserve and Templeman Woods.

The older Cub Scouts and their parents worked with Board members Brett Peters and Larry Samberg at Templeman Woods-Watkins Woods off Rt. 85 by the Mass Pike overpass. With some hard work, they improved trail conditions through addition of new trail markers, clearing limbs and other trail blockages, enhancing trail sight lines, and cleaning up trash and litter from the area.  Big thanks to the Scouts and parents who stepped up to help out!

The younger Cub Scouts and their parents worked with Board members Whit Beals, Debbie Costine, Lawrence Spezzano, and Eileen Samberg at Beals Preserve, starting at the Red Gate entrance. The Scouts learned about the importance of water bars to channel water off the trail, and helped clear them. Then the group walked down the trail to the Riding Ring junction, where they learned about invasives, pulled bittersweet and small buckthorn and burning bush saplings, watched and helped Whit Beals use a “puller bear” to pull larger buckthorn and burning bush saplings out by their roots. Big thanks to the Scouts and parents!

History Walk by Whit Beals on October 16, 2022

Whitney Beals, president of the Southborough Open Land Foundation (SOLF), led a group of about sixteen on a history walk at the Elaine and Philip Beals Preserve on Sunday, October 16 , 2022.

In the 1950s, Whit’s family purchased land on both Chestnut Hill north of route 30 and what is now the Beals Preserve south of route 30. You can read his entertaining and educational talk, describing the land purchase, the conservation restrictions to save the land from development, the history of the ice pond, and plans to maintain the trails, the forest, and the meadows.

You can read a transcript of his talk here.

History Walk at Beals Preserve on Sunday, October 16 at 10 am

Join Whitney Beals and the Southborough Open Land Foundation (SOLF) for a history walk at the Elaine and Philip Beals Preserve on Sunday, October 16 at 10 am. President Whitney Beals will walk and talk about the history of the property. Meet at the kiosk on the south side of the aqueduct. Sign up at the SOLF booth at Heritage Day or send email to info@solf.org to let SOLF know that you are planning to attend. Note there is now a parking lot on Route 30 Main Street. To get directions, more parking information, and a map for Beals Preserve, go to on https://solf.org/beals-preserve/.