Poquoson Museum Marsh Walk
When thoughts started percolating about themes the Poquoson Museum should pursue, everyone agreed that somehow the museum must include stories about marshes and waterways that dominate Poquoson’s shoreline.
Concepts about the meaning of 'poquoson', the Algonquin Indian term for "great marsh", prompted museum founders to select the 15 acre Dryden Farm as the site to create the museum. The property offered a perfect location to transform into a museum campus. In addition to the restoration of the Dryden Farmhouse and Miss Becky’s Store, the property provided adequate space for special projects such as the relocation of Tom Hunt’s Store.
Perhaps one of the best features of the property was its Topping Creek footage. The salt marsh and view of the Back River inspired the museum to conceive a "Marsh Walk". Once the board of directors developed a long range plan, it began to solicit contributions and grants to underwrite the project. The Chesapeake Bay Restoration Fund Advisory Committee awarded two grants totaling $37,500 to support the development of the Marsh Walk. This funding enabled the museum to contract the Virginia Tech Community Design Assistance Center to help the museum develop a master plan for the Marsh Walk.
In the spring of 2006, the museum board of directors approved the final plan and initiated efforts to raise additional dollars to underwrite the project. Approximately $200,000 is required to complete the entire project. In the fall of 2006, work began on the project. The path was laid off and the city owned drainage ditch that runs east and west on the museum property was enhanced.
Once the ditch work was completed, work began on designing a pedestrian bridge to span the ditch. After a structural engineer designed the bridge, the steel for the structure was ordered, the concrete footings to support the structure were poured, and delivery and placement of the steel beams for the bridge took place in early February. The process then moved on to the building of the wooden structure. A photolog of the Marsh Walk development can be seen below.
The board of directors has established several underwriting opportunities for the Marsh Walk, each of which has donor naming benefits. If you would like to be a part of the museum’s Marsh Walk, please contact Paul Whitlow, museum president, at 868-6899. Contribution levels include:
| ||Back River observation tower|| $ 25,000|
| ||Marsh overlooks|| $ 10,000 each|
| ||Rest areas|| $ 1,000 each|
| ||Learning stations|| $ 2,500 each|
| ||Individual boards|| $ 50 each|