The Manchester-Essex Conservation Trust is a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving ecologically important land and wildlife habitat in Manchester and Essex, Massachusetts, and promoting its use for quiet recreation, education and research.


Farewell Charlie

DSCN0019Charlie Kellogg, MECT’s President and high-energy enthusiast for all things outdoors passed away on Monday, September 21, 2015 with his loving family present. Charlie loved the Manchester-Essex Woods…especially in the snow! He hiked and skied, inspired and mentored youths, guided people into the woods, maintained trails, encouraged support for woodland conservation and land protection, and for the last 9 years energetically presided over MECT’s board and Annual meetings. When he wasn’t helping with all things MECT, Charlie was running with Team Gloucester – sometimes up Mt. Washington, hiking in spectacular places around the world, cross-country skiing in New Hampshire and spending time with his family. We’ll never know how many people were charmed, inspired, cajoled, tutored, and befriended by Charlie because they are too numerous to count. We do know for certain how lucky we were to know him and much we will miss him.

Date posted: September 22, 2015

Cameras Ready? Photo Contest Begins September 1

Our photo contest begins on September 1, 2015 and runs to September 1, 2016. A panel of eagle-eyed judges will determine winners and honorable mentions in four different categories: The Four Seasons; Animal Kingdom; Plants and Fungi; and Landscape.

Photos submitted by artists age 17 and under will be judged in a special youth category.

All winning photographs will be on display at the Santander Bank in Manchester during November 2016.

Essex and Manchester are fortunate to have a variety of protected natural habitats in beautiful locations: woodland, open field, salt marsh, salt marsh island, river and stream, forested and shrubby wetland, sandy beach, intertidal, and rocky headland. These locales support a diversity of interesting and photogenic animals, plants and fungi, and the seasonal changes of light and weather are tempting lures to get out your camera, explore, sharpen your awareness of nature, your artistic eye, hone your technical skills and join the fun.

See for complete contest rules and submission instructions, including technical specifications.

Date posted: September 2, 2015

Kiosk Completed at Wilderness Conservation Area Gateway

The Wilderness Conservation Area Gateway kiosk display was installed on May 30, 2015. Designer, Alison Anholt-White and builder, Ken King, both Manchester residents, pose with their work.  Ken also constructed the magnificent wood structure. Photo by MECT trustee, Alan Budreau.


Date posted: June 17, 2015

Town Meeting Voted to Conserve Land

Manchester citizens voted at Town Meeting on April 6 to accept a gift of land from the Manchester-Essex Conservation Trust. (Warrant Article 15) The 2.6-acre parcel of land, a generous gift from Judson L. Wilson, of Gloucester, is now part of the Town’s Dexter Pond Conservation Area. Surrounded by conservation land and the railroad, the woodland parcel is a natural fit for management as part of the conserved area. MECT is happy to support the Town’s conservation efforts. Full article with map is at  “About/Newsletters” – Spring 2015, page 4.

Date posted: March 31, 2015

Crosby’s Markets Support MECT – and you can, too!

October, 2014 – Katerina Thompson, Manager of Crosby’s in Manchester, selected MECT to join the Token Program. When you bring your own bag (something MECT heartily endorses) ask for a token to put in a collection box at the door – Please choose MECT’s box! This is a wonderful way to support our work, and a small effort for a big payoff to protect our watersheds and wildlife! Thank you.

Date posted: November 5, 2014

Our 50th Anniversary Video

Produced by Jeffrey McDonagh at JM Video Productions, and MECT Trustees Mike McDonagh and Mike Dyer, our 50th Anniversary video captures the beauty of the Manchester-Essex Woods, includes interviews with two of the founders of the Manchester Conservation Trust, shows enthusiastic school children exploring nature, and highlights the two-town cooperation that continues to support protection of this special natural open space.

Date posted: November 12, 2013

Welcoming New Members

MECT Annual 2012 004

Photo by Alida Bryant

Clean drinking water or parking lot pollution?  Bright fall colors or unchanging development?  Children’s nature trips or classroom routine? Invest in MECT’s future and invest in your own.  We have much to do and you can help.

 Choose a Tree and become a member now!

Date posted: September 4, 2013