Metacomet Land Trust
PO Box 231
Franklin, MA 02038

Toll Free





Trail Walk, Franklin Woods Open Space, Metacomet Land Trust is a non-profit conservation organization dedicated to the protection of open space and natural resources in South Central Massachusetts.

We presently work in the communities of:
Bellingham, Blackstone, Douglas, Franklin, Mendon, Millbury, Millville, Northbridge, Norfolk, Upton, Uxbridge, Sutton and Wrentham





Annual Membership Meeting and Program: Thursday May 15, First Universalist Society, 262 Chestnut Street, Franklin

How WBCN Radio Helped Save the Blackstone Gorge

Former WBCN Radio disk jockey Carter Alan, now Music Director at WZLX, will speak on Thursday, May 15th at the First Universalist Society in Franklin, 262 Chestnut Street, sponsored by Metacomet Land Trust. Carter will speak about the impact WBCN had on the culture of the time. Carter will share stories from his book, Radio Free Boston: The Rise and Fall of WBCN

Metacomet is a nonprofit conservation organization based in Franklin, and now active in 13 communities in south central Massachusetts from Norfolk to Douglas. The trust will hold its annual membership meeting starting at 6:30 p.m. and the free program will begin at 7:00 p.m.

The connection between the local conservation group and the rock music scene of Boston dates to 1992, when a unique and untouched stretch of the Blackstone River on the border between Massachusetts and Rhode Island was at risk of development. Would it be sold for development or could it be saved? An unusual grassroots campaign by Metacomet took to the airwaves of Boston’s leading rock radio station, WBCN. In less than a year, the needed funds were raised and this special place was preserved as a bi-state public park. How did it happen? Come hear the story of how a small group of local conservationists enlisted the support of the on-air personalities at WBCN and helped save the land.

Tom Bik, of Blackstone, who has been active in the conservation group since its founding in 1988, said “WBCN was instrumental in getting our message out to save the Blackstone Gorge. The Gorge is a unique place, still untouched by human hands.” Blaring the Cream anthem “I Feel Free,” WBCN went on the air in March 1968 as an experiment in free-form rock on the fledgling FM radio band. It broadcast its final song, Pink Floyd’s “Shine On You Crazy Diamond,” in August 2009. In between, WBCN became the musical, cultural, and political voice of the young people of Boston and New England, sustaining a vibrant local music scene that launched such artists as the J. Geils Band, Aerosmith, James Taylor, Boston, the Cars, and the Dropkick Murphys, as well as paving the way for Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty, U2, and many others. Along the way, WBCN both pioneered and defined progressive rock radio, the dominant format for a generation of listeners.

Carter was a DJ at WBCN for nineteen years and is the author of U2, Outside Is America, and Life on the Road. In Radio Free Boston, Carter tells story of a city; of artistic freedom, of music and politics and identity; and of the cultural, technological, and financial forces that killed rock radio.
Carter will answer questions at the end of his talk. Copies of Radio Free Boston will be available for purchase at the event and he will sign copies.



2013 Annual Report

To learn more about Metacomet activites during the past year see our 2013 Annual Report.


Changes to the Land: Four Scenarios for the Future of the Massachusetts Landscape

A new study by Harvard University’s Harvard Forest and the Smithsonian Institution reveals that, if left unchecked, recent trends in the loss of forests to development will undermine significant land conservation gains in Massachusetts, jeopardize water quality, and limit the natural landscape’s ability to protect against climate change.

Read more about the study here.


Whitney Conservation Area Update (September 25, 2013)

Support from the Metacomet Land Trust helped the Upton Land Stewardship Committee raise over $15,000 to construct fencing and a parking lot at the Whitney Conservation Area. The fence and parking area have been constructed. Thank you to all who contributed! Learn more about the Whitney project here.


The Benefits of Open Space

A new report, "The Return on Investment in Parks and Open Space in Massachusetts" authored by the Trust for Public Land, has been released.

Highlights from the report:   

  • For every $1 invested in land conservation, $4 in natural goods and services is returned to the Massachusetts economy.
  • Visitors to Massachusetts spend an estimated $16.9 billion each year and generate $1.1 billion in state and local taxes. The total economic impact of this travel is $26.9 billion. Tourism supports nearly 125,000 jobs, which provides $3.63 billion in wages per year.
  • Outdoor recreation generates $10 billion in consumer spending, $739 million in state and local tax revenue, 90,000 jobs, and $3.5 billion in wages and salaries each year in the state.
  • Agriculture, forestry, commercial fishing, and related processing activity are responsible for $13 billion in output, and 147,000 jobs in Massachusetts.

To view the report, click here.


Mendon Property Preserved by a Conservation Restriction (November 30, 2012)

Metacomet Land Trust is pleased to announce the protection of 14.3 acres in Mendon thanks to the granting of a Conservation Restriction by Shirley Smith. The Mendon Open Space Plan identifies the property as priority for conservation and it lies within a larger corridor of approximately 1,000 acres of private and public undeveloped land. The protected property inlcudes 900 ft. of frontage on the Mill River, riparian wetlands, and wooded uplands.

Read more about why Ms. Smith preserved her land here.











To reach Metacomet, please call our toll free telephone:

Metacomet Land Trust
PO Box 231
Franklin, MA 02038

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