On Pettaquamscutt, February 26

View Nancy Karraker's presentation on amphibians and reptiles in the Narrow River Watershed.



Watch a short film on Habitat Restoration at Lake Canonchet

On Protecting Canonchet #1
The Master Plan

On Protecting Canonchet #2
Appropriate Uses

On Protecting Canonchet #3
Management of the Park

On Protecting Canonchet #4
Finance Issues


Cleanup at Lake Canonchet
September 10, 2011

Charlie Lee Remembrance
February 6, 2011

Canonchet History
Who was Canonchet?
by Richard Vangermeersch

Canonchet Farm Master Plan
Town Council Holds Workshop on Planning Board Report

Our Response
October 21, 2010

Our Vision and Recommendations for Canonchet Farm
April 2009

Guided Walks Fall 2010

Beech Grove Cleanup Complete
Cleanup - Day 4
October 31, 2009

Beech Grove
Cleanup - Day 2
October 9, 2009

Tom Wessels
Guided Walk
October 10, 2009

Other Links
Narrow River Preservation Association

South County Museum

On Pettaquamscutt 2017

Narragansett Chamber of Commerce


Get out your calendar and check the Events page for guided walks, volunteer opportunities, and other special events including a Day at the Museum on May 13.

On Pettaquamscutt 2017

Tim Cranston: "Industry Along the Pettaquamscutt"
Maury Loontjens Memorial Library
March 26, 2017 1:00 p.m.

Join us on Sunday, March 26, the third and final 2017 presentation when local historian, preservation advocate and columnist Tim Cranston takes us on a virtual tour of the north end of the watershed and tells us about the historic mills at Silver Spring, Shady Lea and Gilbert Stuart.

After the talk, continue the conversation next door at Trio Restaurant, 15 Kingstown Road.

As with other On Pettaquamscutt presentations, the talk is free and open to the public. But space is limited, so you are encouraged to reserve a place now:

For more about On Pettaquamscutt visit our Events page.

Maintaining the Canonchet Farm Trail, Volunteers Welcome

Work continues along the Canonchet Farm Trail every Saturday morning throughout the winter, with volunteers removing invasive species and improving the safety and usability of the trail.

The trail work sessions are scheduled for every Saturday morning from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. through the winter and are cancelled when the weather is prohibitive. Volunteers meet at the South County Museum parking lot, 115 Strathmore Street, Narragansett for sign-in, instruction, and tool distribution.

Please e-mail Kathie Kelleher at friendscanonchet@aol.com or call 401-783-3951 if you are interested in volunteering.

On Pettaquamscutt 2017

Join us on Sunday, February 26, for the second presentation in sixth season of On Pettaquamscutt Winter Speaker Series when Dr. Nancy Karraker, URI Associate Professor in the Department of Natural Resources Science, (shown on the right leading a guided walk in Canonchet Farm in April 2015) will describe the wide variety of amphibians and reptiles that thrive in the Narrow River Watershed.

Nancy's research has examined the impacts of habitat loss, pollution, climate change, invasive species and disease on biodiversity in North America and Southeast Asia. That research has included field studies with her students at Canonchet Farm.

For more about On Pettaquamscutt visit our Events page.

On Saturday mornings volunteers clear privet and other invasive plants from the Canonchet Trail.
More photos on the Habitat Restoration Page.

Thanksgiving Stroll
Sunday afternoon, November 27
1:00 to 3:00

Please join us on our traditional after-Thanksgiving stroll to recharge our batteries before the December holiday rush. It is just a walk. Bring a special friend. Find peace and relaxation in a special and beautiful place.

We may visit the stone quarry or a scenic overlook to Pettaquamscutt Cove. We may travel over narrow pathways to new places.

Meet in the Anne Hoxsie Lane parking lot across Boston Neck Road (Scenic Route 1A) from the Narragansett Town Beach South Pavilion. The walk will be led by Kathie Kelleher, a Friends of Canonchet Farm Trustee.

This walk is free and open to the public. For information call Kathie Kelleher at 401 783-3951.

The URI Rowing Team takes a bow after completing four hours of work
on the Canonchet Farm Trail on Sunday, November 13.
More pictures on Trails Maps.

Scott Turner reflects on a walk at Canonchet Farm
The Providence Journal, November 11, 2016

Co-explorers of the world around us

An unconventional walk in the woods renewed my spirit near the end of a disagreeable election season.

My stroll was as leader of a publicized nature walk in South County, in which I learned as much from participants as they might have picked up from me.

(Read more...)


Maintaining and Improving the
Canonchet Farm Trail

The next work session is Saturday, November 19
from 9 a.m. to Noon

IMG_0076-1.JPGWell, Fall is here! and invasive remediation sessions around the coastal ponds are over for this year. Now we turn attention to Canonchet Farm Trail maintenance as soon as possible to get as much done before bad weather interferes. In fact, we have already had two work sessions this month and there is plenty of work to be done.

The next session will be on Saturday, October 22 from 9 a.m. to noon, and we continue every Saturday to the end of the year (weather and holidays permitting). Please plan to meet near the animal pens on the South County Museum property, at the end of Strathmore Street in Narragansett to pick up tools, and go to the selected work area. We may be headed into new territory - new privet to extirpate, new strangler vines to cut out, more stone walls to uncover. Or maybe we will do a quick refresh of last season's work to start.

Instruction, coffee, water, snacks, tools and gloves will be available. Hope to see you there!

Visit the Habitat Restoration page or call 401 783-3951 for more information.

An easy hike with gorgeous views

"If you think the only place to walk in Narragansett is the sea wall," advises Betty Cotter in a feature article about Canonchet Farm in the February 10, 2016 Narragansett Times, "you might want to take a detour into the woods behind South County Museum." Click the image to read the full article.

Download a map of Canonchet Trail.


The future of Lake Canonchet, as envisioned 41 years ago...
(click the image to zoom in)

New Sign Honors Charlie Lee, Celebrates Native Plants Along Lake Canonchet

The Friends of Canonchet Farm has donated the first in a series of interpretive signs on Canonchet Farm, this one describing the native plants that are thriving along the eastern edge of Lake Canonchet.

Installed near the intersection of Boston Neck Road and Anne Hoxsie Lane, the sign features an illustration by Frances Topping and honors the memory of Charlie Lee, founding member the Friends of Canonchet Farm.

COstal Rhode Ilsand Botanical Garden


THE FRIENDS OF CANONCHET FARM was created in 2007 by a group of Narragansett residents who recognized this forgotten parcel of land could be preserved as a natural space for the community to enjoy. The group has evolved into a partnership with the Town to provide funding and volunteers for enhancing the property. We are committed to help create a natural park for the enjoyment and education of Narragansett residents and visitors.

Today Canonchet Farm is a green space unlike any other in Rhode Island. Comprised of 175 acres of fresh and saltwater wetlands, forests,brooks, and ponds abutting Pettaquamscutt Cove on Narrow River, the land is habitat for a wide variety of birds, plants, animals, and insects. The John H. Chafee National Wildlife Refuge owns ten acres of the land, while the remaining 165 acres belong to the Town of Narragansett. The original open fields of farmland have, over the years, grown into a thick forest of native and invasive plants and trees. Visitors and members will enjoy learning about the area on our popular guided walks, led by experts in the fields of nature, culture, and the sciences. With 1.5 miles of walking trails and proximity to the South County Museum, Canonchet Farm is a perfect venue for a day's outing.


Canonchet Farm's earliest inhabitants were the Narragansett Indians, followed by the first colonial settlers and farmers of the area. In 1865 Governor William Sprague and his wife, Kate Chase Sprague, purchased the property and constructed a sprawling sixty-eight-room mansion. They called the farm"Canonchet" after the renowned sachem of the Narragansett tribe. In 1909 the mansion burned to the ground. Now,only the stone framework remains from the original stable, which burned in 1960's.


With the ongoing habitat restoration program, made possible by the support of donations and volunteers, the ponds are becoming visible from Boston Neck Road. A proposed linear park along the shores of both ponds with a landscape design of native plants begins to take shape. We also plan to install educational signage, offer programs for children, and hold courses in forestry management.


Whether your interest is a quiet walk through the forest or the hands-on experience of preserving the environment, we invite you to join Friends of Canonchet Farm, and help support the natural development of this unique place in Rhode Island.

photo by Bill Krul

Photos by Bill Krul

The mission of the Friends of Canonchet Farm
is to improve, manage and preserve Canonchet Farm
in partnership with the public for the enjoyment
of present and future generations.

Glacial Erratic

Map of Canonchet Farm
Shows trail heads and points of interest
Send e-mail to FriendsCanonchet@aol.com with questions or comments about this web site.
Copyright © 2007 - 2017 Friends of Canonchet Farm
Last modified: March 24, 2017