Hawk Hill Farm

Project Description

It took five grants to acquire this 45-acre farm (23 acres of prime soils) and then $54,000 in personal donations and a $10,000 tag sale to restore the 1870’s “bank”-style barn, now filled with hay. This former dairy farm links to adjacent open space and farms forming a 350-acre cultural landscape on the west side of Bloomfield.

Hawk Hill Farm is one of the oldest continuously operating farms in Bloomfield, dating back to 1746. Multiple generations of the Kelly family operated the farm from the 1860’s to the 1980’s. The post and beam barn was in poor to failing condition when it was bought in 2015. WLT raised $35,000 to successfully stabilize the structure, added electrical power and rebuilt the large sliding front doors. Challenges for this barn remain to be crumbling and cracked concrete walls along with water infiltration during the spring season.

The farm also includes an easy, one-mile walking loop from the barn on Duncaster Road that connects to trails in the adjacent LaSalette Park with views of the Hartford skyline and Metacomet Range. (See Trail Maps for more info.) Plans call for the trail to become part of the LaSalette Trail, a regional walking trail that will connect Filley Pond Park in the center of town to the New England Scenic Trail in Penwood State Park.

July 2019 Update:

After the fields at Hawk Hill Farm were restored with the help of a Connecticut Department of Agriculture grant, volunteer stewards observed an influx of Canada Thistle in the middle tier fields. It was critical to remove the thistle before it went to seed in order to preserve the restoration, as the seed is wind-distributed and could spread on the property and to neighboring agricultural properties. A contractor was hired to cut the fields by tractor and helped identify areas inaccessible by tractor. Two hard-working groups of volunteers then cut weeds, vines, and thistle from those areas.

October 2019 Update: 

Over two days volunteered cleaned the barn interior, picked up around the yard, mowed along the road edge, re-purposed leftover straw bales, removed felled trees, and removed invasive vines from many of the property’s 12 state champion trees. Thanks to all who helped improve the curb appeal for our neighbors and ready the site for a new farmer to occupy this bucolic farmstead.

Related Projects

Beacon Hill Preserve

Evans Family Meadows

Hawk Hill Farm

LaSalette Trail

Lisa Lane Farm

Stout Family Fields

Thrall Farm

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