WALLINGFORD — Some families made the most of a long Fourth of July holiday weekend at Wharton Brook State Park. The sun was shining, and the smell of burgers and hot dogs burning on the grill filled the air.
“I’m here with my family. Dad is out fishing and the kids are out swimming,” said Ada Cassa as she was preparing lunch. “I like that it’s quiet. Nice and quiet.”
People sat on the beach watching as their kids jumped in and out of the water, swimming to avoid the heat on Thursday.
Just up the hill from the beach, several other families were spread out under the shade getting ready to have lunch. Some played soccer while waiting for the food to cook while others just sat around to chat.
“Yeah we’re here cooking. Getting ready to eat,” said Manny Stroud, sitting with his family under the shade. “We’re going to meet some family later and then head down to the beach.”
Stroud’s wife Veronica talked about how excited she was to spend the day at the park, which is located on the Wallingford-North Haven line along Route 5.
“I didn’t even know this place was here,” she said. “When I saw it I told my husband, I said ‘We have to go there.’ It’s a very nice place.”
Last year, the state closed down the park for eight months following a storm in May 2018. Trees had been ripped up out of the ground leaving state crews to clear the wreckage.
According to Chris Collibee, a spokesman for the State Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, about $250,000 was allocated by the state for tree removal alone at Wharton Brook.
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