By KALEA HALL
The Cohasset Express trolley offers a wealth of opportunities for both its riders and the Mill Creek MetroParks.
For riders, it’s a chance to explore the park in a new fashion.
For the park, it offers a new audience of explorers.
“There are nooks and crannies of the park that a lot of people don’t know about,” said Samantha Villella, community engagement director. “We are going to bring you to parts of the park that you may not be familiar with.”
A media tour of the park was offered by Mill Creek MetroParks via the Cohasset Express on Monday.
The Cohasset Express was obtained by the park in September and revealed this year. It is available to rent, in addition to the guided tours the park offers.
The tour started at Fellows Riverside Gardens and went around to the James L. Wick Jr. Recreational Area, the Lily Pond, Lake Cohasset, Ford Nature Center, Pioneer Pavilion, Lake Glacier, Parapet Bridge, the Old Log Cabin and more.
This was a standard tour given by the MetroParks staff, but in the future, there will be guided tours with specific topics such as park architecture.
Ray Novotny, outdoor education director, directed one tour so far in March called “Cabin Fever.”
“We went to several cabins and we actually got outside, and I did a lot of narration,” Novotny said. “I really stress a lot of what we do was [park founder Volney Rogers’] idea. I give him a lot of credit.”
Along Monday’s ride through the park, there were legends told of the Parapet Bridge, East Slippery Rock and the Old Log Cabin. Volney and his brother, Bruce, went to Europe for ideas for the park. Legend has it they saw a bridge and wanted to bring the same one to Mill Creek, and now sits Parapet Bridge — the most-photographed element of the park.
“In the fall, those colors around it are just breathtaking,” Villella said on the tour.
Another legend is that a man local blew up part of East Slippery Rock after his son slipped and drowned.
In addition to insights gained from the tour, there also was talk of several plans the park officials have in mind.
There is currently under construction a sugar house for the syrup collected from the area trees, the new playground in the Wick Recreational Area, a boardwalk and frog pond observation deck at the Lily Pond, dam repair and habitat restoration at Lake Cohasset and more.
“We have drivers and guides, [the tours] are all about education and awareness,” Villella said.
The rental fee for the trolley will be $350 for the first two hours and $150 for each additional hour. The trolley must be rented for a minimum of two hours. A guide is available for an additional fee of $25 per hour (guide must be reserved for entire rental time).
For more information about Cohasset Express tours and costs in April, go to millcreekmetroparks.org, or call 330-702-3000.