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Hundreds of Summit MetroParks Volunteers Plant 120,000 Nuts at a Former Golf Course in Akron

Fourth-grade friends Ben Mehendale (left) and Ben Wells enjoyed scattering the nuts with a slingshot around the former Valley View golf course, now owned by the Summit MetroParks. They say they look forward to coming back and seeing trees take over the land.
Fourth-grade friends Ben Mehendale (left) and Ben Wells enjoyed scattering the nuts with a slingshot around the former Valley View golf course, now owned by the Summit MetroParks. They say they look forward to coming back and seeing trees take over the land.
Fourth-grade friends Ben Mehendale (left) and Ben Wells enjoyed scattering the nuts with a slingshot around the former Valley View golf course, now owned by the Summit MetroParks. They say they look forward to coming back and seeing trees take over the land.
Credit KABIR BHATIA / WKSU
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Fourth-grade friends Ben Mehendale (left) and Ben Wells enjoyed scattering the nuts with a slingshot around the former Valley View golf course, now owned by the Summit MetroParks. They say they look forward to coming back and seeing trees take over the land.

Summit MetroParks welcomed more than 500 volunteers over the weekend, where they took the first steps toward re-foresting an old golf course in Akron.

Nut planting

Volunteers planted oak, hickory and Buckeye nuts around what used to be Valley View Golf Course. The 27-hole course closed in 2015 and was bought by the MetroParks for $4 million. Executive Director Lisa King says the 194 acres fill in a gap, since it’s surrounded by three other parks.

“It makes contiguous property for the MetroParks from Revere Road in Fairlawn all the way through Sand Run and Cascade Valley and Gorge MetroPark.”

King says the nut planting may become an annual event that extends to other properties as well.

The 120,000 nuts planted over the weekend were collected over the past two months by volunteers.  Rob Curtis is a biologist with the parks.

“We are planning about 25 acres of amenities: there’ll be some river access and there will be an event center on the site. But then the rest of the area will be turned to natural areas [such as] wetlands.”

Curtis says the park system plans to re-sod the park in the next two weeks. After that, he says animals will likely return, which is why it was important to plant the nuts before rodents and deer start looking for them.

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