Stewardship Summary & Reference Links 

Willistown residents have repeatedly identified hiking, trail systems, and nature enjoyment as recreational priorities. Willistown Parks & Recreation recognizes that environmental as well as park infrastructure stewardship are important factors of these priorities that lead to a high quality of life and recreation. Following is information on water stewardship and Okehocking and Serpentine Preserve Management, as well as links to stewardship organizations serving the community.

Willistown Conservation Trust Water Quality Research

Willistown Parks and Recreation partners with Willistown Conservation Trust  (WCT) on their water quality research program. WCT has been collecting baseline water quality data in the main stem of Ridley Creek at Okehocking Preserve since 2018. Okehocking is one of ten WCT water chemistry sampling sites in the headwaters of the Ridley, Crum, and Darby watersheds.  Sample results are sent to the Academy of Natural Sciences to test for the presence and concentration of nitrogen, phosphorus, and total suspended solids. The data is then used by the Delaware River Watershed Initiative (DRWI) for their conservation efforts. The DRWI collaborates with conservation organizations across the four states of the Delaware River watershed to monitor water quality at over 300 locations across the basin. WCT's ten-site monitoring program began with funding provided by the William Penn Foundation in affiliation with DRWI. They also survey for macroinvertebrates (water organisms without backbones) which are indicators of stream health—they vary based on the pollution levels of the water. Read WCT's A Macroinvertebrate's Thanksgiving Feast article here.

Chester Ridley Crum Watersheds Association

Willistown Township Parks and Recreation has worked with CRC for many years on the improvement and protection of our precious water resources through joint enhancement projects, stormwater education, and the annual CRC Watershed Clean Up. Visit the CRC website for more information. CRC is currently renting the Garrett Farmhouse at Okehocking Preserve from the Township, and is sharing the building with Willistown Parks and Recreation. Stop by to say hello when you're out for a hike at Okehocking!

Stormwater Awareness

Willistown Township is conducting a comprehensive stormwater management program mandated by the federal Environmental Protection Agency and monitored by the state Department of Environmental Protection. A major component of the program requires an effort by the township to increase citizen stormwater awareness and participation in stormwater protection.

Stormwater Pollution

Stormwater pollution is a challenging water quality problem. It is caused by the daily activities of people everywhere. Rainwater and snowmelt run off streets, lawns, farms, and construction and industrial sites. The water picks up fertilizers, dirt, pesticides, oil and grease, and many other pollutants on the way to our streams, rivers, lakes, and coastal waters.

Stormwater Runoff

Stormwater runoff is the most common cause of water pollution. And as we all know, water is essential to life, so we should all do our part in protecting this precious resource.

Best Management Practices Guidelines

Go to best management practices links for pet owners, business owners, property management, and automobile maintenance.

Report Violations or Problems

Citizens are important advocates for the health of our local streams and water systems. To report a concern, see the list of events to report and whom to contact.  

For more information about stormwater, please visit our stormwater management page.

Greentree Park Management

PECO Green Grant

Willistown Township is one of three municipalities in Chester County to receive $10,000 in grant funding from the 2017 PECO Green Region Grant Program for municipal open space and environmental projects. The program is part of PECO’s ongoing efforts to support environmental initiatives across southeastern Pennsylvania including park and recreation resource improvements, open space preservation, and ecological conservation.

“The municipalities and nonprofits receiving grants are putting their energy into the environment, and we’re proud to support these initiatives as PECO remains committed to increasing the environmental sustainability of the communities we serve across southeastern Pennsylvania,” said Craig Adams, PECO President and CEO. “Each of these projects will positively impact the region as they create new green spaces, revitalize vacant lots, beautify trails, and much more.”

The funds were used for Phase 1 of the Greentree Park Best Management Practices (BMP) Retrofit which consisted of 3 components: 

  1. Site Assessment and Analysis: Conduct an existing conditions survey including topographic, utility, and physical conditions; a geotechnical investigation at proposed porous paving and bioswale sites; field reconnaissance to evaluate site conditions and understand factors affecting the feasibility and design of the proposed site improvements; and base map preparation.
    The Site Assessment and Analysis findings included limiting conditions on the property for our original concept of creating storm water runoff bio-swales and pervious paving. We gained approval from PECO and Natural Lands to adjust the Scope of Work to include:
  2. BMP Concept Plan to include stormwater basin naturalization design and planting plan and trail layout.
  3. Interpretive sign design for meadow management as well and about the Important Bird Area in which Greentree Park is located.
  4. Read about it in the Crier.
  5. Project deliverables:
    Greentree Park Site Assessment
    Greentree Park Best Management Sketch Plan
    Greentree Park Stormwater Basin Planting Plan and Educational Signage Design and Detail
    Greentree Park Educational Signage Design Meadow Management and Important Bird Area
    Greentree Park PECO Green Region Project Final Report

This completes Phase 1 of the Greentree Park Best Management Practices Retrofit. Phase 2 will include: Attaining funding to plant the detention basin naturalization project and manufacture and install the educational signage.

Okehocking Preserve Management

View Okehocking Preserve acquisition, management, and stewardship information.

View the Okehocking Preserve Management Plan.

Okehocking Trails Program

Find out about the Okehocking Trail Corps

View the Okehocking Preserve Trail Assessment and Prescriptions Report.

View the Okehocking Trail System Map.

View Penn Trails' Bed & Tread Trail Workshop information.

Okehocking Weed Warrior Program

Find out about the Okehocking Weed Warrior Program

Serpentine Preserve Management

CRC & Willistown Township Serpentine Preserve Riparian Buffer Planting

Spotted Lanternfly ManagementSLF no background

The spotted lanternfly has found its way to Willistown. Here's what you need to know and what to do to stay vigilant in limiting the damage of this invasive insect. Please tell your friends, family, and neighbors! The more we all can spread awareness about the insect, the better chance we have against fighting it.

Stewardship Organizations

Brandywine Conservancy

Chester County Water Resources Authority

Chester Ridley Crum Watersheds Association

Delco Anglers & Conservationists

Natural Lands Trust

Valley Forge Audubon 

Valley Forge Trout Unlimited

Willistown Conservation Trust

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