For Immediate Release - November 30, 2011

State Environmental Officials Celebrate Completion of Brookfield Fishing and Boating Access Project

Boat access locations, maps and fisheries information

BROOKFIELD – Wednesday, November 30, 2011 – Officials from the Massachusetts Department of Fish and Game (DFG), along with state legislators, town officials, and local area sportsmen and women, celebrated the completion of a boating access reconstruction project at the Dick and Paula Woodard Fishermen’s Access Area in Brookfield today.

"Providing quality access facilities to Massachusetts’ natural resources creates recreational opportunities that are popular with both residents and visitors to the Commonwealth,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Richard K. Sullivan Jr., whose office includes DFG. “This project supports local jobs and improves accessibility for people who enjoy boating and fishing.”

The DFG’s Office of Fishing and Boating Access recently completed reconstruction of the facility, expending $135,000 on the project. In fiscal year 2011, the agency completed eight boat access projects valued at close to $1.4 million. This Brookfield project will greatly enhance fishing and boating opportunities at one of the premier fishing lakes in central Massachusetts.

“South Pond is known as one of the best trout fishing lakes in the state,” said DFG Commissioner Mary Griffin. “We are pleased to have completed construction of the facility so that it will be ready for the rush of anglers and boaters next spring.”

DFG’s Office of Fishing and Boating Access oversaw the construction of the facility, which was done by Precise Paving, Inc. of Sturbridge. The facility now includes a new concrete boat ramp, an improved turning radius that will make it easier to launch and retrieve boats, new pavement and granite curbing and accessible sidewalks and pathways for shore anglers. There are 10 parking spaces for vehicles with trailers and an additional five spaces for single vehicles.

“This project provides safer and easier access to one of the town’s most valuable natural resources,” said Sen. Stephen M. Brewer. “Outdoor recreation provides a healthy pastime for youth and residents in the area. This project will also enhance the South Pond area for future generations.”

“I appreciate the great work of DFG and for naming the area for Paula and Dick Woodard – there are not two more deserving people,” said Rep. Anne Gobi.  “Fishing was a major part of Dick's life and Paula was there by his side to give the support he needed to enjoy one of his passions. Now a new generation will be able to enjoy this fully accessible area.”

“For years South Pond has been a wonderful resource for area residents to enjoy outdoor activities.  As a child growing up, I spent many summer days here fishing with my grandfather,” said Rep. Peter Durant. “The reconstruction of these facilities improves access, and will ensure the continued success of this pond for future generations.”

South Pond, also known as Lake Quacumquasit, is very popular with anglers who fish for rainbow trout and brown trout stocked by the DFG’s Division of Fisheries and Wildlife. Brown trout have displayed high growth rates in recent years and the clear, cold waters hold trout over from year to year, resulting in many trophy-size fish. Additional fish species, such as largemouth bass, chain pickerel, yellow perch, white perch, black crappie and northern pike can also be found.

The facility is jointly managed by DFG’s Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, which owns the property as part of its 170-acre Quacumquasit Wildlife Management Area, and the town of Brookfield, which oversees a summer swimming beach on the property.

The Department of Fish and Game (DFG) is responsible for promoting the conservation and enjoyment of the Commonwealth's natural resources. DFG carries out this mission through land protection and wildlife habitat management, management of inland and marine fish and wildlife species, and ecological restoration of fresh water, salt water, and terrestrial habitats. DFG promotes enjoyment of the Massachusetts environment through outdoor skills workshops, fishing festivals and other educational programs, and by enhancing access to the Commonwealth's rivers, lakes, and coastal waters.

DFG's Office of Fishing and Boating Access (FBA) manage the construction, repair, and operation of state boat ramps, canoe and car-top launch sites, parking areas and approach roads. The office oversees facility design and construction, which is usually done by private contractors or municipal public works departments. Office funds are also used to construct handicapped accessible sport fishing piers and to purchase and improve shoreline fishing areas. FBA facilities provide access to more than 1,200 miles of seashore and hundreds of great ponds, rivers and streams in the Commonwealth. The office oversees 273 boat and canoe launch sites, shore fishing areas and fishing piers in Massachusetts, giving residents and visitors extensive opportunities to enjoy fishing and recreational boating opportunities such as canoeing, kayaking, sailing, and waterskiing.

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