News & Events Archive

Stride with Pride

Thanks to Potsdam Pride for co-organizing and hosting a fun "Stride with Pride" in Heritage Park to continue celebrating Pride Month throughout June. We had a great afternoon enjoying the Heritage Park loop and looking for the whimsies!  

Fun At The Whimsy Walk! 

Thanks to all who came out to celebrate the kick-off of two months of nature related "whimsies" visiting Heritage Park! Folks and familiies walked the 1/2 mile trail loop in the park spotting all the whimsy wildlife for a prize, while enjoying music from NCPR Music Host Sarah Scafidi-McGuire. We had so much fun searching for macro-invertebrates with Nature Up North and learning about the connections between fungi and trees while crafting a telephone with the North Country Children's Museum, and more! Thanks to the North Country School, Deep Root Center, and St. Lawrence University students for their whimsy sculpture donations! And a huge thank you to all who came out, we're already looking forward to next years big summer event!

A huge thank you again to our amazing business sponsors: Coakley Home and Hardware and Rex Hardware! 

Thank You Volunteers!

Our opening Volunteer Workday on Saturday, May 13th at Heritage Park was a HUGE success!  Thank you to the Corning-Canton Plant volunteers who came out, as well as the assortment of community volunteers and Grasse River Heritage members. With a team of 25 people we made quick work of weeding, mulching, tree limb removal, pruning, laying down wood chips on the trail, and more. We couldn't have done it without YOUR help and we're so appreciative to all of the people who volunteered their time on Saturday morning to help keep Heritage Park looking glamorous. 

Thank You Lance Rudiger - Historical Walk in the Park!

Lance's walk on Saturday, May 13th was a trip back in time, from the Ice Age up through the 17, 18, 1900's and finally to the present day! Lance detailed how the old buildings on the island were used, and what a U.S. president was doing visiting Canton and the park. He explained how the town and the island have changed over hundreds of years, not just socially but geologically and more! Thank you Lance for your expertise and enthusiasm, and for all the community members who came out to learn!

Thank You North Country Savings Bank!

Hailey LePage of North Country Savings Bank presents a check to Anneke Larrance, Grasse River Heritage.  NCSB supports Grasse River Heritage's dedication to restoring the Grasse River as a central place in the life of the Canton community.   

Thank You Betsy!

If you visited Heritage Park this past fall (2022) it was hard to miss the new wooden walkway on the far side of the island. A huge thanks goes out to Betsy Robinson (pictured here) who suggested and helped fund the building of this walkway. Heritage Park is owned and maintained for the public by Grasse River Heritage.

Peter Wyckoff receiving his Volunteer of the Year Award from GRH Vice President Anneke Larrance.

Volunteer of the Year!

Grasse River Heritage could not exist without its many volunteers, and so, to honor them all, we select a Volunteer of the Year.  None exemplifies their contribution and dedication more than this year’s winner, Peter Wyckoff.  For two decades, Pete brought exceptional leadership and expertise to GRH as a member of its Board of Directors, including a term as President.  He retired from the Board at the end of 2021 but has continued to pour time and energy into the work of GRH and the experience of our visitors, taking the lead in complex repair and construction projects in Heritage Park and art installations in the nearby sculpture garden.  We could cite examples, but the truth is that there is no direction you can look in these parks and not see his remarkable handiwork.

Volunteer Day at Heritage Park

Many volunteers helped Saturday, November 5th at Heritage Park in Canton as the organization updated the landscape with new shrubs and trees.   Pictured are Beth Denny and Louis Tremaine as they plant a new Serviceberry tree which will feature white blossoms in the spring, provide edible food for birds, and show vivid fall colors.   

Thank You SLU Students!

A group of St. Lawrence University Orientation Leaders spent an afternoon in August at Heritage Park helping out the Buildings and Grounds Committee. One of their main tasks was covering up the graffiti on the Speare Saw Mill Bunker on Falls Island.

Thank you to the students for volunteering their time, and to Ashley Downing-Duke, St. Lawrence University Senior Associate Director of Student Activities and Leadership & Director of the Student Center for coordinating with Grasse River Heritage!

Kiosk Repair

Thanks to the Buildings and Grounds Committee and some hard-working volunteers, the Coakley Island Kiosk is looking great - once again stable with some very fresh-looking pressure treated posts. Thanks for all the hard work team!

Our Solstice Event is back!

After a 2 year hiatus due to COVID, we are re-igniting our spectacular summer solstice event. This is a fun family event with games for all ages. Activities will include pie toss, balloon pop prizes, scavenger hunts, a cash bar, and more. This year we are excited to add a fortune teller to our list of activities! There will be music provided by NCPR dj Sarah Scafidi-McGuire. We'll also have food trucks, and as always, the beauty of the park and river. 

Walk In The Park Series Continues!

As part of the St. Lawrence County Chamber of Commerce's Great 8 Challenge, take an hour Saturday, June 4th, or whenever fits your schedule best, to explore Heritage Park and check a "Waterfall Crawl" trail off of your list!

The last Saturday of June, Patrick Hanss will be leading an angler walk beginning at 9:30. Ever wondered what type of fish you could catch in the Grasse River? Now's your chance to find out, and learn some fishing tips and tricks while you're at it!

If you haven't seen the new sculpture yet, it's a treat! More details about Rybee House are below, and we can't wait until the rest of the sculptures are in! Stay tuned for more details on an upcoming Sculpture Garden Walk.

New Sculpture Installed!

Rybee House, a wood sculpture by Steven Klema, was installed in the Grasse River Heritage Sculpture Park in Canton recently.  Klema's piece is the first in a series of new sculptures to be presented in Grasse River

Heritage's Sculpture Exhibit III. Stay tuned for more information on new sculpture installations and a Sculpture Garden Walk once Exhibit III is complete!

SUNY Canton Outdoor Club volunteers at Heritage Park! 

Members of the SUNY Canton Outdoor Club worked at Heritage Park in Canton replacing the split rail fence on Coakley Island:   Julia Stevens, Liz George, Montana Houseman, Paige Jegierski, Lailah Emad, Joshua Haft, Liam Szabo, Steven House, and Louis Tremaine from Grasse River Heritage.  

Call for Volunteers!

Grasse River Heritage is a non-profit organization without any staff. We are engaged in a campaign to increase community involvement. Grasse River Heritage owns and maintains three parks:  Heritage Park, The Grasse River Sculpture Garden, and Dwight Church Park.  The organization also has an advisory role with the new Arts Park on Canton Island and plans for an additional point of access (a fishing launch) to the Grasse River. GRH has a Walk in the Park series, a Solstice celebration, and three parks to maintain.

We welcome volunteers interested in long-range planning, with interest in expanding the recreational opportunities on the Grasse River, and interest in the arts. We also need creative, organized people who like to plan diverse programming and share it on social media and the website. Volunteers who are willing to help with cutting, pruning, planting, and weeding as well as tree care are encouraged to reach out too.

Commitments are typically around 1-2 hours per month. You are invited to join this team of supporters. Just follow the link to volunteer.

Volunteer of the Year - 2021

Grasse River Heritage's 2021 Volunteer of the Year award was presented to Judy DeGraaff  in recognition of her consistent and dedicated years of work at Heritage Park in Canton.  Building and Grounds chair, Pete Wyckoff, commented; "Judy has been raking, weeding, and pruning in Heritage Park since we opened to the public in 2008. I know when I put out a call for volunteers for the Opening and Closing Work Session that Judy will be there." Grasse River Heritage thanks Judy and the many other volunteers who contribute their time to keep the park safe and welcoming for the community and the many visitors that enjoy its use. 

Heritage Park Trail/Cascade Falls included in STLC Trails Waterfall Crawl Great 8 Challenge!


The Great 8 Challenges have been designed to introduce you to new trails and experiences across the great county (the largest in New York!) All of the challenge trails are family friendly and can be explored if you're new to the outdoors, a seasoned hiker or somewhere in between! 

To join the challenge, create a free user account here on Then use the Trail Log on your account page to document the trails you have completed. When you have a trail log for every the trail in the challenge, we will send you a congratulatory email with a digital badge. Display your achievement to all your family and friends with a Great 8 Challenge sticker! Order them here. Patches coming soon...

Read about walk with a doc here

Trail logs dating from January 2020 can count in the Challenge.