Thursday Doors: Westmoor Park

Westmoor Park's classic red barn is dressed up with a wreath for the holidays. Photo credit: Deb Cohen

Deb Cohen of  ‘The Front Door Project’ visits West Hartford’s Westmoor Park.

Westmoor Park's classic red barn is dressed up with a wreath for the holidays. Photo credit: Deb Cohen

Westmoor Park’s classic red barn is dressed up with a wreath for the holidays. Photo credit: Deb Cohen

By Deb Cohen

How many towns can boast their own demonstration farm offering a wide variety of programming to its residents? I would venture to say not very many! Thanks to the foresight and generosity of Mr. Charles Hunter who left the property to the Town of West Hartford when he passed in 1961, West Hartford residents are fortunate to have Westmoor Park as a public education and recreation area for all ages to enjoy.

According to the park’s website, the first known owner of the land that is now Westmoor Park was John Merrill, purchased by him in several large tracts from 1683-1700. When Mr. Hunter purchased the property in foreclosure in 1939 from the Hartford Connecticut Trust, it had seen many owners.

Over the years the property served a number of purposes, including its use as a dairy farm by the Flagg family (the current address of the park happens to be Flagg Road). One owner, Lt. Raymond Ellis, started the Westmoor Fox Hunt in 1925 and formed the Westmoor Farms Polo Club. He was the first to name the property “Westmoor”.

Upon purchasing, Charles Hunter and his wife Leila bought some additional acreage and used the farm for boarding horses for friends and family. Mrs. Hunter was an avid gardener and one of her perennial gardens is still maintained on the property. Part of the Hunters property is also utilized as a community garden today.

Over the years my family has visited the park countless times, whether to visit the barnyard animals, attend seasonal events, school sponsored field trips or participate in vacation camps and after-school programming. Westmoor Park truly has something for everyone!

This post is part of the weekly Thursday Door series sponsored by Norm 2.0. Check his site for more interesting doors contributed by bloggers all over the world. See some of my previous entries here and here.

Don’t miss a post! Subscribe to The Front Door Project via e-mail on the Home page.

Deb Cohen of West Hartford started The Front Door Project in the summer of 2014 as a way to motivate herself to get outside, exercise and pay more attention to her surroundings. She began photographing homes with a primary focus on the front door, which is a welcoming focal point. Social media provided the means to share the photographs and a ready audience to follow along, and her new-found interest soon led to exploring other local area towns in my free time. The “project” has led to deeper interests in architecture, local history and historic preservation and came at a time in Deb’s life when she needed some inspiration. Please join Deb as she continues to share her everyday travels and explorations of other towns and places! You can find her other posts at www.thefrontdoorproject.com.

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