Patrick Overton Preserves A Preserve

Last spring, alert “06880” reader Katherine Ross was walking along Imperial Avenue, near Harborview Road. She noticed what she called “a forgotten park on the river.” Small trails, a few benches were hidden and a plaque identifying “William P. Teuscher Wetlands Preserve” were hidden, she says, by overgrown weeds and poison ivy.

This summer, Katherine noted substantial changes. Trails had been cleared. Wood chips were down. New plants had taken root.

The William P. Teuscher Wetlands Preserve -- before and after.

The William P. Teuscher Wetlands Preserve — before and after.

Katherine was impressed. But she did not know who was responsible.

Recently, she learned the answer. Staples student Patrick Overton took on the task, for his Troop 39 Eagle Scout project. He had help from his brother James.

A newly cleared path in the Philip Teuscher Wetlands Preserve. It just into the Saugatuck River off Imperial Avenue, near Harbor View Road. (Photo/Katherine Ross)

A newly cleared path in the William P. Teuscher Wetlands Preserve. It juts into the Saugatuck River off Imperial Avenue, near Harborview Road. (Photo/Katherine Ross)

What a great idea. And how nice to do something so important, so well — and so quietly.

Patrick Overton, with the Teuscher plaque.

Patrick Overton, with the Teuscher plaque.

PS: Here’s a closeup of the plaque. Very interesting and educational (except for the misspelled “whose.”)

Teuscher preserve

11 responses to “Patrick Overton Preserves A Preserve

  1. Julie Van Norden

    Lovely. Thank you Patrick!

  2. Having been recently involved in the restoration of the Katharine Ordway
    Preserve in Weston, I heartily applaud Eagle Scout Patrick Overton for his
    vision and hard work saving this preserve. Looks like it was a massive
    effort and this natural venue is one of the most beautiful in Westport.

  3. This is a wonderful example of how people can make a difference. Sometimes it is as simple as picking up trash, other times it involves work, commitment and expenditures. Maintaining , indeed enhancing, the beauty of our Town is something for which we should all strive and in which we should all participate.
    Don Bergmann

  4. Carolyn Braznell

    This is a wonderful project…Congratulations to Patrick for all of his hard work! Hopefully the city can allocate some time to keep this preserve intact and keep those poison ivy plants out!

  5. Laurey Tussing

    Way to go Patrick! My son is researching his Eagle Scout project now. I love reading about new ideas. A win win for all!

  6. Thank you Patrick, James and the entire Overton family (I know from our own experience how much a combined family effort is needed for an Eagle project– particularly from Mom & Dad), and the Overtons are a wonderful family.

    The plaque is great. I wonder though if we had a grammar check back in the old days of 1995! 🙂 (who’s… whose)

  7. James M Graves

    Now that’s a worthwhile project. Add a gold star to the Eagle badge.

  8. Wendy Crowther

    When I was on the Parks & Recreation Commission (2002 – 2010), I tried to advocate for the renewal/restoration of this precious, unique preserve which had fallen into disrepair and neglect. I got nowhere on that request. As is often the case, the P&R Department did not have the resources (manpower or money) to dedicate to a small, passive-use, open-space park (our active-use parks get much more attention).

    In the town’s zeal to limit tax hikes and lower expenses, projects like these don’t happen unless they are spearheaded by private individuals or groups who pitch their time and money toward them. If no one offers, places like Dr. Teuscher’s Preserve disappear through neglect as the town spends its money elsewhere. With that neglect, Dr. Teuscher’s good deed and memory are dishonored.

    I personally want to thank Patrick Overton for dedicating his time and efforts to restoring this beautiful gem. Dr. Teuscher is smiling again, and so can those who will visit his preserve, walks its paths again, and take in its unique and beautiful views of the Saugatuck River.

    I’d also like to thank Katherine Ross for noticing the before and after effects, and for notifying Dan, our most excellent town advocate.

  9. Another attack of the vicious apostrophe. Mary Maynard

  10. Audrey Hertzel

    What a great way to give back to the town and congratulations to Patrick for pursing the rank of Eagle Scout! (And a special thank you to Patrick’s brother, James). Both of my brother’s sons are Eagle Scouts and I know how many years, hard work and dedication scouts endure to reach this impressive achievement.