Published on February 15, 2017

Update on Budget and Request for Help

Norman Smith with Granddaughter

Once again, Blue Hills Trailside Museum in Milton needs your help. Governor Baker recently cut the $500,000 committed to Trailside for its current fiscal year. On top of that, he did not propose any money for the museum to operate for the next year. 

We are not giving up  

We’re working to restore funding but we need your help to do it. Call your local state legislator and tell them what Trailside means to you. Better yet, write them a letter. We’ve been told that a handwritten letter is even more powerful than a phone call!

It can say something to the effect of: 

Dear _______, 

My name is ________ and I live in ________. I was very disappointed to hear that funding has been cut for the Blue Hills Trailside Museum. [Include personal story here, for example, My daughter went to camp for years and learned to appreciate nature because of their program. Or I remember visiting Trailside as a child, and now I look forward to bringing my children to watch the otter and see a snowy owl up close.] Please restore full funding for Trailside Museum so they can continue their important efforts. 

Sincerely, 

_______________

Once you’ve done that, we’d love it if you would share your personal connection, photograph, or drawing and tagging our Facebook and/or Twitter accounts using #fundtrailside. 

Why this matters

The museum, owned by the state of Massachusetts and managed by Mass Audubon, relies on the Commonwealth for a large portion of their operating budget. With proper funding, Trailside:

  • welcomes more than 100,000 visitors a year to the Blue Hills Reservation
  • provides environmental education to more than 200 schools
  • offers a popular summer day camp program
  • provides universally accessible nature trails, including sensory exhibits and self-guided audio tours so that everyone may enjoy the natural history exhibits
  • is the home of the Snowy Owl Project led by Norman Smith, which has become a national model for safely removing owls from airports and gaining a better understanding of these elusive birds

In response to Baker’s budget cuts, Mass Audubon has found it necessary to reduce services and personnel at the Blue Hills Trailside Museum. With your help, we hope to restore funding for the operation of Trailside. Thank you!