Many thanks to those who have already picked up trash along Forest Home roads or committed to do so.

Neighbor Charlie Trautmann is organizing work parties to repair the trail alongside the creek near the footbridge at Flat Rock. Here is his description:

  1. Sat April 23 (rain date Sat April 30) – Volunteer work day to re-gravel the trail across the bridge and carry precut lumber 200 yd across the bridge to where it’s needed. We’ll need lots of strong willing workers with gloves and shovels, plus any wheelbarrows would be welcome. Any amount of time volunteered would be helpful!
  2. Sun April 24 and Tues-Wed Apr 26-27 – Volunteer work days, as needed, to assemble 150 feet of boardwalk. We’ll need a few relatively skilled people – cordless drivers and batteries would be helpful.

Charlie adds: We need people to staff a sign-in table, hand out drinks and band-aids, walk with the public who come by, tell workers where to put stuff they are carrying, where to go, etc., so no skill level is too small to be helpful!!!

Contact Charlie directly at 607-227-1910 or

Please save Saturday, April 16 for the annual Forest Home Improvement Association spring roadside cleanup. We will meet in the park at 10 a.m. There will be garbage bags, gloves if you need them, and a few mechanical picker-uppers. We will divvy up the road assignments as we arrive. As an added incentive, volunteers may keep any $100 bills they find!

The FHIA is also looking for volunteers to help maintain the park. Tasks include weeding, watering the flower box, communicating with the Town’s park department, etc. A special need will be for someone to plant and maintain a small triangle of land near the down hill walkway sign after the path is rebuilt, hopefully this spring. The FHIA will pay for the native plants and materials.

Clump of snowdrops in Forest Home Park.  March 2022
Clump of snowdrops in Forest Home Park. March 2022. [Connie Stirling-Engman]

See previous post Spring Cleanup — Tentative Date for information about some invasive plants that might already be showing up at the roadsides or in your yard.

The Town of Ithaca Spring Brush Pickup begins on Monday April 18th. See

Spring is really on the way. Some snowdrops and winter aconites were showing before the latest fall of snow. What this means is that it’s time to set a date for the neighborhood Spring Cleanup, when FHIA encourages residents to volunteer to pick up the trash that has accumulated by the sides of our streets over the winter or participate in other activities to keep the neighborhood looking attractive. Watch for details from

Meanwhile, you may want to keep an eye out for Garlic Mustard or Hairy Bittercress. These aggressively invasive plants overwinter without dying back and you may notice them soon. Below are some useful documents FHIA has circulated in the past about dealing with them.

Garlic Mustard: Identification, Resources, Recipes

Hairy Bittercress: Identification and Resources

Leaf collection in the Town of Ithaca will start at 7:00AM on Monday, November 8th, 2021 and will continue throughout the week until finished. Leaves should be at the curb by 7:00 a.m. on the first day of collection. Leaves may be raked to the shoulder of the road or bagged in biodegradable paper leaf bags (30 gallon bags are available at many stores in the area). Other debris such as pine needles, dead flowers, garden waste, grass clippings, etc., cannot be vacuumed and should be placed in bags. Please fill bags and place on road shoulder, folding over openings of bags to close —- do not staple or tape. No plastic bags will be picked up.

The Town’s crews will go around the entire Town once with the leaf vacuum. For the rest of the month of November, the crews will begin picking up paper-bagged leaves each Monday, which could extend through early week to encompass the entire Town.

After the usual association business, President’s Report, Treasurer’s Report, etc., there will be a demonstration by Lars Washburn and his sister Katrina Mackey of the high-end radio their grandfather bought in the mid-1930s, which has recently been restored to functionality. Lars lives in the house on Judd Falls Road that his grandparents moved into in July 1929.  The radio is a McMurdo Masterpiece V.  Much more intricate than other radios from this era, it would have been that decade’s equivalent of today’s high-end home theater setups.

McMurdo Masterpiece V radio in 112 Judd Falls Road in the 1930s.

Lars says, “I can demonstrate the radio from my grandmother’s chair in my Forest Home living room, situated as photographed in the attached 1930s picture.”

He will have an HD camera and separate microphones on hand to distribute the sound and images via Zoom.

The Public Works Department will be picking up brush, limbs, and branches starting Monday, October 18th, and will continue throughout the Town until finished. All yard waste must be at the roadside by 7 a.m. on the first day of collection. There will be no second collection and no callbacks.

Leaf collection will begin at 7 a.m. on Monday, November 8th, 2021 and will continue throughout the week until finished.

For detailed guidance, see Town of Ithaca September 2021 Newsletter

Given the spike in asymptomatic Covid-19 cases in Tompkins County and concern about transmissibility of the new variants, we are simplifying the event. It is no longer the usual barbecue, but a simple Ice Cream Social.  We will not be grilling and are not asking residents to contribute side dishes and desserts.

We encourage individuals and families from Forest Home to bring their own beverages to the park — no alcohol, please. Some families may want to bring food to eat themselves. Bring masks and be thoughtful about social distancing.  Come any time after 3pm. Consider bringing chairs.

Starting around 4pm, we (FHIA volunteers who are vaccinated, masked and gloved) will serve ice cream. We will provide bowls, spoons, and napkins.

It’s not necessary to bring anything but yourselves and your appetites, but if you are inclined to bring something to share, we ask that it be finger food that can be picked up easily without any serving utensil and without digging into a deep container. It could be presented on a tray or platter with items separated, preferably individually wrapped.

We will have a supply of masks, hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, and gloves.

You may have noticed that the damp weather has brought out a lot of mosquitoes.  Consider applying your preferred repellent before you come.  And check for ticks afterwards.

IMPORTANT!  Plans have changed.  There will be no barbecue, but we will serve ice cream.

(Updated 9/8/2021)

We are planning to hold our usual get-together and barbecue in the Forest Home Park. The picnic will be on Saturday September 11, with a rain date of the following Saturday, September 18.

We need vaccinated volunteers to help with:
* grilling
* serving food (instead of the usual self-serve buffet)
* setting up before the party
* cleaning up after the party

We will have a supply of masks, hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes, and gloves.

To volunteer, please write to us at

We encourage parents or grandparents of small children to make suggestions that would make them comfortable to bring the children to the party.

We will check guidelines from the Tompkins County Health Department and other COVID resources closer to the date and will send an update if the picnic needs to be postponed.

The meeting with Cornell Community Relations, Wednesday August 11, 2021, 7-7:30pm
will include updates and Q&A on
[A] the North Campus Residential Expansion (NCRE)
[B] student move-in (beginning on August 19 — see

with NCRE project manager Chris Davenport and Student and Campus Life Communication Director Karen Brown, and Community Relations staff.

Residents should check email for the ZOOM link.

We are delighted to announce that the relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions means that we can plan for our usual get-together and barbecue in the Forest Home Park this year. The rain date will be the following Saturday, September 18. If you have particular concerns or suggestions related to Covid, please share them with the board via so that we can consider them in our planning.