Guided Walks
This Spring

Tim Cranston
Sunday, April 22

Scott Turner
Saturday, May 19

Beth Laliberte
Sunday, June 3

February 2018 Newsletter



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


Gansett Days Event, Posted September 10, 2018

Play in a Park To Be

Come celebrate Gansett Days with us on Saturday, September 15, from 1;00 to 3:00 on the shore of Lake Canonchet. That's directly across Boston Neck Road (1A) from the Narragansett Beach South Pavilion, where free parking is available.

Play a little bocce, maybe croquet and enjoy a scoop of Brickley's Ice Cream.

The Friends of Canonchet Farm is developing a park along Lake Canonchet and Little Neck Pond to the north. That's the "Park to Be."

Review plans by a landscape architect for a park on the eastern shores of the two coastal ponds.


Raymond Stuart Kagels (1948-2018)

We Have Lost a Good Friend

On August 26, Ray Kagels, a true Friend of Canonchet Farm, died after a long battle with cancer. Members of the Friends of Canonchet Farm extend their sympathy to Joyce and all the Kagels family.

Here is a link to Ray's obituary: Raymond Stuart Kagels


Guided Walk, Posted 22, 2018

Tim Cranston Covers 400 Years
in a Little More than a Mile

It was a beautiful spring day (at last) on Sunday, April 22, when 57 visitors walked with Tim Cranston along the Canonchet Farm Trail and heard Tim's stories about Canonchet's "best time to die," Algonquin descriptive place names, vernal pools, sheep walls and cow walls, invasive critters and plants, and 18th century South County plantations as the "bread basket for the Caribbean." And that's just a partial list. Here are some photos of the guided walk. Click a photo to enlarge it.

Photos by Rosemary Smith

Habitat Restoration at the Coastal Ponds, Posted April 18, 2018

April 21 is Opening Day at Lake Canonchet

Saturday, April 21 is Opening Day for the seventh season of habitat restoration along the two coastal pond across the street from the Narragansett Town Beach, Lake Canonchet and Little Neck Pond. We will work from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. We will be clearing debris from winter storm damage, checking for emergent knotweed and other invasive plants (the invasives always show up early) and maintaining the progress we have made along the two ponds. Volunteers old and new are always welcome. As always, Friends of Canonchet Farm provides tools, snacks, drinks, instruction, lunch (weather permitting) and the best gloves you will ever use. Meet in the Anne Hoxsie Lane parking lot directly across Boston Neck Road (Scenic 1A) from the Narragansett Town Beach South Pavilion.


Notice posted April 18, 2018

Notice of Annual Meeting

Notice is hereby given that the Annual Meeting of Members of Friends of Canonchet Farm will be held on Sunday, May 20, 2018, at 1:00 p.m. at the South County Museum, 115 Strathmore Street, Narragansett, R.I., for the following purposes:

 ♦ Presentations by the President, Treasurer and guest speaker

 ♦ Election of Trustees for terms ending at the Annual Meeting in 2018 and new Trustees

 ♦ Transaction of such other business as may properly come before the meeting or any adjournment thereof.

PRESENTATION BY: A Landscape Architect from Beta Group will present information on the landscape plan being prepared for the eastern shores of Lake Canonchet and Little Neck Pond.

Kathie Kelleher, President

Guided Walks Posted April 9, 2018

Tim Cranston to Lead Walk April 22

Join us on Sunday afternoon, April 22, from 1:00 to 3:00 when local historian Tim Cranston searches for changes made to the land by former users and owners of Canonchet Farm.

Tim has a wealth of knowledge of the history of South County which he has been sharing for many years through articles and presentations.

Please meet Tim in the Ann Hoxsie Lane parking lot directly across from the Narragansett Town Beach South Pavilion on Boston Neck Road (Route 1A.)  This guided walk, cosponsored by Friends of Canonchet Farm and the Narragansett Historical Society, is free and open to the public.

For more information, call 401 783-3951.

Three Stories, Posted February 26, 2018

Click these links for a bit of Canonchet Farm history:

Flying and Riding
at Canonchet

How Canonchet
Got its Name

Canonchet Farm
in Colonial Times

Trail Work Continues, Posted February 26, 2018

Volunteers Making a Difference along the Trails

"I am always surprised when I walk the trail after a session to see the work we've accomplished," wrote Friends of Canonchet Farm President Kathie Kelleher in a recent e-mail to volunteers who have been removing invasive vegetation from the Canonchet Farm Trail on many Saturdays since late October. "Somehow, the day of the work I don't notice it as much. Thanks to all you volunteers over this winter who have given me so many 'Wow!' moments. I recently walked with a large group from OLLI and they were quite impressed with the trail. I was proud of you all."

Work on the trails continues through March and new volunteers are always welcome. The sessions run from 9:00 to noon on Saturday mornings; gloves, tools, snacks and training provided. For information e-mail Kathie ( or call 401-783-3951.

On Pettaquamscutt 2018 Winter Speaker Series, Posted February 26, 2018

March 25: Narrow River and its Watershed:
Twenty Five Years in Review

Linda Green, Director
URI Watershed Watch
Sunday afternoon, March 25, 1:00 to 3:00
Maury Loontjens Memorial Library
Seating is limited. So please click the Register button to reserve a seat.

Please join us on Sunday afternoon, March 25 for the third and final presentation in the 2018 On Pettaquamscutt Winter Speaker Series, when Linda Green, URI Watershed Watch Director, will present "Narrow River and its Watershed: 25 Years" at the Maury Loontjens Memorial Library, 35 Kingstown Road, Narragansett.

On Pettaquamscutt: Presentations on the Environment and the History of the Narrow River Watershed, now in its seventh season, is a collaborative project of Friends of Canonchet Farm, Narrow River Preservation Association, South County Museum and the Maury Loontjens Memorial Library with generous support from Trio Restaurant.

The presentations are on three Sunday afternoons, from 1:00 to 3:00, at the Maury Loontjens Memorial Library, 35 Kingstown Road, Narragansett. All events are FREE and open to the public. After each talk, continue the conversation next door at Trio Restaurant, 15 Kingstown Road.

Visit the On Pettaquamscutt website to the view speakers and presentations in the first six seasons.

See the Friends of Canonchet Farm Home Page in 2017

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 with questions or comments about this web site.
Copyright © 2007 - 2018 Friends of Canonchet Farm
Last modified: September 10, 2018