As the weather warms, we are all anxious to get outside and the Lawrence Hopewell Trail is one place to do it. Designed primarily as a bicycle trail, it is also open to foot traffic. The section from Meadow Road in Lawrence Township to Weldon Way in Hopewell Township is complete and does not involve riding on any heavily traveled roads so it is perfect for families and recreational riders. Check lhtrail.org for maps.
(Please note that the Lawrence Hopewell Trail also runs north from Meadow Road to the ETS campus near Princeton Township. This section is not considered below.)
The parking area near Meadow Road is associated with Lawrence Historical Society’s Brearley House. Look for the date 1761 in the brick on the east gable. This building reflects the style of an 18th century English Manor house scaled down for an American farming family. The bricks were made from local clay and probably fired in a kiln on the property. If you have time, take the short spur which connects with the Delaware and Raritan Canal towpath. This area was once the Great Meadow, a farming and grazing land of the Leni-Lanapi, but has become a wetland after two centuries of canal and road construction.
Taking the LH Trail west, you will cross Princeton Pike and follow the Lewisville Road to the Lawrenceville School. The Trail passes through the school grounds, part of which are a National Historic Landmark and include an area designed by Frederick Law Olmstead (famous as the designer of New York’s Central Park).
After leaving the Lawrenceville School, you will cross Route 206 in the historic village of Lawrenceville. The Trail takes a turn down a short stretch of the former Johnson Trolley Line before proceeding up Craven Lane and through Lawrenceville’s Village Park, across Keefe Road and into Mercer Meadows (part of Mercer County’s park system). This section of the Park includes the Pole Farm. In the 1920’s, American Telephone & Telegraph purchased several family farms and clear-cut the land to erect steel and rhombic antennas, creating the largest transmission station in the world. Local livestock grazed beneath the rows of towers which came to be called the Pole Farm.
After crossing Blackwell Road, the Trail passes through the grounds of the restored Hunt House, now the Mercer County park office. The house dates to 1760-1790 with later 18th and 19th century additions. In addition to the house, there is a visitor center.
A bit further on, you will loop around Willow Pond and then come to Rosedale Lake with its fishing pier and canoe/kayak launch. Picnic tables are available and children can use the nearby Treehouse Playground. There is also an off-leash dog park.
After crossing Federal City Road, you will find the Mercer Educational Gardens and the Equestrian Center with over 200 acres for horseback riding, bird watching and hiking. There is also an equine-themed play area for kids.
The Trail re-crosses Federal City Road and passes through the Ecological District of Mercer Meadows and Old Mill Road, the site of an historic Hopewell Valley saw and grist mill. It then crosses Pennington-Rocky Hill Road. Here you have a choice. You can follow the main Trail past Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Hopewell campus up to Wargo Road or you can turn left and follow a short spur down into the historic town of Pennington.
A printable map of Mercer Meadows is available here.
Enjoy the beach
without the crowds! Bring fun-in-the-sun to your home with this easy-to-make
ocean-in-a-bottle craft. What you will need -A clean bottle with cap -Water -Glue -Clear vegetable or mineral oil -Blue food coloring -A funnel (or small paper cup) -Glitter -Sand -Various charms, small shells, etc.
What you will do: 1.Remove all labels from the bottle. 2.Fill the bottle half-way with tap water. 3.Add 2-3 drops of blue food coloring and swirl gently
to mix. 4.Using the funnel, add glitter. 5.Add charms, sea shells, etc. 6.Using the funnel, add the sand. 7.Using the funnel, fill the rest of the bottle
with the clear oil. 8.Put glue around the rim of the bottle and seal
on cap. 9.Once the glue is dry, turn bottle on the side
and gently rock it back and forth to make your own ocean waves!
Then, get ready for
the beach with these great books:
Once I wore his leather jacket. Not in the romantic, one-step-from-engaged, day-after-day way. But literally, once. It was sometimes in the 1980s. I was at a publishing party at the St. Maritz (which now has the much more prosaic name of The Ritz-Carlton). It was overlooking Central Park on a freezing cold evening. The author I was minding went out on a balcony to smoke; willy-nilly I followed her and soon had chattering teeth and goosebumps. Then a rather nice voice said, “Take this,” and a leather jacket was thrust into my hands. Gratefully, I put it on, and a few moments later, when my author went back inside, I returned the jacket with thanks. Much later, I recognized the jacket’s owner from an author photograph: yes, Neil Gaiman.
That was not how he ruined my life, however. That came decades afterwards, in 2017. In the intervening years I read and enjoyed many of his books: Coraline and The Wolves in the Walls, where if you ever thought things were wha…
Happy March and Happy National Peanut Month! This holiday was created by the National Peanut
Board to coincide with National Nutrition Month…and for good reason, as the unassuming peanut is packed with nutrition. Peanut butter – a product in which more than half of all peanuts in America are used – is also given a shout-out on March 1st with Peanut Butter Lover’s Day. Peanuts are eaten all over the world and they are, of course, a favorite American snack. Read on for some fun peanut facts!
Peanuts originated in South America – likely Brazil or Peru – at least 5,000 years ago. When the Spanish and Portuguese began exploring the New World, they took peanuts back with them to Europe and from there they spread to Asia and Africa. African slaves brought peanuts with them to North America, and peanuts’ nickname of “goober peas” comes from the African word for peanut, nguba. Today, peanuts are cultivated in almost every area where the climate suits.