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Jess Cooley, Big Brothers Big Sisters

Congratulations on 50 years, Kestrel Land Trust! It has been an honor collaborating with you on activities for the mentors and mentees of Big Brothers Big Sisters. You have taken us on magical moonlit winter solstice walks, on multi-sensory adventures through nature preserves, and vernal pool explorations in wildlife refuges. We have loved learning about the vast beauty of nature, and the myriad accessible trails, that are right here in Hampshire County! Seeing the wonder in our Littles’ eyes as we explored new places together has been a favorite memory of mine. The staff at Kestrel are incredibly dedicated, creative, and generous. Thank you for all you do!

Note from Jess: I took these photos at the Orchard Arboretum Conservation Area in Amherst in June 2018 when we took a nature walk, led by Marilyn Castriotta, with Bigs and Littles from Big Brothers Big Sisters of Hampshire and Hampden Counties. Marilyn invited residents from Applewood to join us, so it was a multi-generational, multi-sensory walk, followed by an art class at the Eric Carle Museum that she arranged for us as well. It was a magical, wonderful day for all!

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