Broad Meadow Brook to Name New Education Center for Longtime Benefactor
Michael P. O'Connor
WORCESTER, MA—Mass Audubon’s Broad Meadow Brook Wildlife Sanctuary will name a new education center, the essence of its Your Sanctuary in the City capital campaign, in honor of Barbara Fargo, a steadfast and generous friend of the sanctuary for almost a quarter-century.
The campaign is edging ever closer to its goal of $2.5 million, which will fund the transformation of an existing 2,500-square-foot structure into the 5,000-square-foot Barbara Elliott Fargo Education Center. The new space will provide much-needed capacity and state-of-the-art resources for nature-based learning and camp programs.
Mrs. Fargo, known throughout the Broad Meadow Brook community and beyond as “Bargo,” was—fittingly—writing thank-you notes to other campaign donors when she was asked how she felt about having the building named for her.
“Oh, I am truly honored,” she said. “For an old school teacher such as myself, it seems more essential than ever to get kids outside in nature, learning and exploring. The staff at Broad Meadow Brook does such a great job helping children connect with the natural world, and this new, expanded education center will ensure that they can do a lot more, for a lot more kids.
“And to make it happen,” Mrs. Fargo said stressed, “we need to get this campaign up and over the top so we can complete this wonderful new site for nature education.”
In addition to the education center, the wildlife sanctuary’s driveway and parking areas will be re-designed to more smoothly and safely accommodate vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians. The entire project will also serve as a model for storm water management, through carefully engineered site design, landscaping, and implementation of rain gardens and native plantings.
Sanctuary Director Deb Cary said the influence of Ms. Fargo extends far beyond her campaign support.
“The Your Sanctuary in the City campaign is more than an important and necessary fundraising effort,” Cary said. “It’s about how Bargo and other dedicated people throughout Greater Worcester are committed to helping children and all visitors to Broad Meadow Brook forge connections with nature that will last a lifetime—and benefit our overall quality of life.”
Mass Audubon protects 36,500 acres of land throughout Massachusetts, saving birds and other wildlife, and making nature accessible to all. As Massachusetts’ largest nature conservation nonprofit, we welcome more than a half million visitors a year to our wildlife sanctuaries and 20 nature centers. From inspiring hilltop views to breathtaking coastal landscapes, serene woods, and working farms, we believe in protecting our state’s natural treasures for wildlife and for all people—a vision shared in 1896 by our founders, two extraordinary Boston women. Today, Mass Audubon is a nationally recognized environmental education leader, offering thousands of camp, school, and adult programs that get over 225,000 kids and adults outdoors every year. With more than 125,000 members and supporters, we advocate on Beacon Hill and beyond, and conduct conservation research to preserve the natural heritage of our beautiful state for today’s and future generations. We welcome you to explore a nearby sanctuary, find inspiration, and get involved. Learn how at massaudubon.org.