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Playground Update

The playground is coming! DGS tells us that they will begin taking down the existing playground this Thursday 10/12 in preparation for the new and improved one. It will be at least a few weeks before the new one is up and ready to play. We'll keep you posted!

Ice Cream Social Sunday 9/10

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Come out and enjoy some ice cream courtesy of Stewarts and kick off the beginning of Fall with friends and neighbors at the Pond
Sunday Septebmer 10th, 2017
1PM - 3 PM
Nature Tours with Sean Madden
Music by Brett Sears

Duck Rescue!

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Here's a feel good story for the week ... Yesterday police officers got a call about a duck tangled in a fishing line at Buckingham Pond today. The back of the duck's wing was tangled in a line that was stuck high in a tree. Officers Dan Kuhn and Greg McGee and two employees of True Green worked together and with sticks and poles, managed to get the duck free! She seems to be OK, we saw her flap her wings a few times before leaving the pond. Thank you Albany Police Department!

Volunteer Construction Leader Needed!

We are making excellent progress on the playground project.  The equipment has been ordered, the City is on board to do the heavy work, and now we need to figure out the details of the volunteer part of the construction.  We could use some help to do that.   Do you know someone who is comfortable with tools and construction, who is good at planning ahead, and who'd be willing to help us bring this project to fruition?  Are you that person?  Read on for more details, and if you are interested, get in touch at
The Conservancy has raised the necessary funds for a new playground at Buckingham Pond.  (Thank you to everyone who donated, especially to our major donors: The Lobo Living Trust in memory of Angelo & Victoria Lobo, the Massry Family, the City of Albany, the Bender Family Foundation and Dolores Hamilton).  
In order to stretch our dollars to get the best playground possible, we are planning on a "community build".  That means volunteers will do the lighter work of assembling the playstructures.  City of Albany's Deparment of General Services will do the heavy work including digging footings, pouring concrete, and spreading the engineered wood fiber surface.  Kompan (the playground equipment company) will provide an installer to coordinate and supervise the installation work.
What we need is someone to be the primary contact on our side, who has the time and skills to get to a fine level of detail to coordinate with DGS and plan for the right amount of time and the right number of volunteers.   Ideally that person would be availabe during the build to help ensure that everything goes smoothly.
The planning time is basically now, or soon. We anticipate that the equipment will be delivered around 10/19 or 10/20, and we'll want to do the actual build as soon as possible after that.    (For those who aren't right for the construction leader, but do want to help build our awesome new playgound,  keep an eye on this space, we'll let you know here about dates and times for the build once we get those details worked out.)
Please contact if you think you can help with this effort, or know someone who can.

Don't Be Surprised by Low Water Levels

Don't be surprised if you notice low water levels in the pond. This is actually good news! The water department is doing some shore-line stabilization and needed to lower the water level by about 6". This is a temporary change ...water levels will soon return to normal.

This work is funded by donations to BPC including a substantial anonymous donation. Thanks to all of our donors, and special thanks to you Anonymous! Another great example of BPC and the City working together for improvements at the Pond.

This is just one of several strategies for addressing water quality concerns that were identified in the Lake Management Plan developed for BPC by B&L engineering in 2015. The Conservancy is working every day to identify resources to implement these improvements so that Buckingham Pond continues to provide a little bit of nature in the City for all the residents of Albany!  Read the Lake Management Plan here

Wondering What's Happening at the Pond?

Have you been wondering what's been going on at the pond?   We're happy to report that the City of Albany is addressing the long-standing erosion problem at the Euclid entrance on the south (New Scotland) side.  This area has been washing out during each large storm, creating a small canyon that makes it difficult to traverse, and results in lots of stone dust in the Pond. The Conservancy identified this as a concern as far back as 2009, and we are so happy that the Water Department is addressing this.  Thank you Commissioner Joe Coffey!

Please provide feedback on draft playground design

BPC is making great progress on raising funds and finalizing a design for a new and improved playground at Buckingham Pond.  Special thanks to the Lobo Living Trust, the Massry Family and the Bender Family Foundation for their financial support.

Designing a playground is a tricky balance of providing fun and activity for kids of all ages and abilities within a limited space and with a limited budget.  The playground designer has provided the design shown below and we'd welcome your feedback via email to no later than Sunday, June 11, 2017.  We hope to finalize the equipment shortly aiming for fall installation.

Below you will find three images - two views of how the playground will look, and an image with the location of the new playground shown over the existing site.  Click on each to see a larger view.  There is also a pdf with detailed information about each piece of equipment shown in the images. (This file is 6.44 MB so it may take a minute to download.)  

The draft design includes two separate areas - one designed for toddlers, and one for larger kids.  Each includes its own separate swing area.  The initial feedback from the community was quite clear that families want more swings at the pond!

We believe a refined version of this draft will be achievable with help from the City of Albany - but making it happen will require lots volunteer labor as well.  We will keep you posted as the plans for that are finalized.

And don't forget - if you want to have your family recognized at the pond, and help support the playground in the process, you can put your message on a commemorative brick for $50 (4" x 8") or $100 (8" x 8").  Purchase here:


Felton McLaughlin


View 1
View 2

Goose Killer?

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Buckingham Pond often struggles with too many geese - their droppings create a mess along the path and grass, and they contribute to water quality problems because they add too much fertilizer to the water and encourage too much plant growth.  This is why we ask everyone to please, please not feed the geese and ducks.  Feeding them attracts more birds than the pond can support and exacerbates the problems.
But apparently someone has taken matters in to their own hands in an unlawful way.  Please see below from our community policy officer, and if you see something, please get in contact with Officer Brooks.
You may also be interested to read the All Over Albany article here:  
From Officer Brooks:
There has been recent incident at the Buckingham Lake/Pond regarding the geese population. There has been confirmed sightings of an unknown person killing the geese that reside at the pond. I do realize the geese may be a social nuisance but still this action is unacceptable.  What I am asking is to keep a diligent observation towards any one who is in close proximity of these animals.
****Possible suspect sightings is a unknown white male dressing in a blue uniform operating a red newer model pick up with the lettering "DGS Wildlife" on the side. If you see this suspect or vehicle at or about the park area notify the police immediately ****
Note: Illegally killing  Canadian Geese is in violation of Federal Fish/Wildlfe and NYS EnCon Law   
Any questions email me directly
Officer James Brooks
Albany Police Department CSU
536 Western Ave
Albany NY 12203
office 518-458-5669
station desk 518-458-5660
fax 518-458-5669                              
cell 518-795-0020

Annual Meeting 2017 Recap

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For those of you unable to make our annual meeting this March, we had a good turnout of 30 or so members, friends, and neighbors. We also saw several of our elected officials in attendance including Mayor Sheehan, Treasurer Darius Shahinfar, County Legislator Andrew Joyce and Councilman Joe Igoe. That presentation we made to the audience of members and friends is also available here.


As a brief recap, it was a good year for our conservancy.

  • Membership has grown to 190 paid memberships
  • We secured our largest single donation up to then of $15,000 from an anonymous donor thru the Jewish Federation of Northeastern NY
  • Awarded our annual Pond Partner award to former BPC president Harry Ermides
  • Coordinated invasive plant removal with the Water Dept
  • Began work with the Water Dept on a master plan to handle erosion and path stabilization from the north Euclid path entrance to the south Lenox entrance


As for our plans for 2017, a short list would include:

  • Embarking upon an ambitious playground improvement campaign and secured a $25,000 challenge grant from the Massry family
  • Launching our commemorative brick fund-raising campaign to complete funding for the playground
  • Moving forward with our efforts to address water quality, working with the City Water Department on improvements around the pond.


Lots of good things are happening and the coming year holds the promise of both a new playground and upgrades to erosion control issues that will help improve the water quality in the pond. However, as with every all-volunteer organization, we could always use more hands helping us row the boat.  If you have an interest in joining one of our committees or the board, I encourage you to attend our monthly meetings which are the first Monday of each month @ 7:30. We hold those meetings at the public meeting room at the Bach Branch of Albany Public Library at 455 New Scotland Ave.



Felton McLaughlin


Buckingham Pond Conservancy

Good Job Clean up!

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Thanks so much to our volunteers on April 30 including Councilman Joe Igoe!
A few hearty souls came out in the drizzle, picked up trash and cleaned out the debris that had collected at the east end of the pond!

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