By Tom Kerwin
Recently, quite out of the blue, a friend mentioned how he was driving around Chadds Ford and it occurred to him how beautiful the town is. This happened to be an overcast day in early December when the trees had lost their leaves and many would describe the landscape as somewhat bleak. His words stayed with me over the next several days and I noticed, as I had not recently, how accurate he was. It is easy to lose appreciation for the unique nature of our town while caught up in daily activities and distracted by routine. Six decades go a small group of residents formed the Chadds Ford Civic Association with the goal of retaining the Township’s “rural character”. I cannot imagine that those people could have anticipated the explosive growth and commercialization along the Route 1 and Route 202 corridors but they and many other residents have been successful in insuring we still have that “rural character”. Lately, wherever I go in Chadds Ford I notice the open space, the woodlands and fields, farmland, beautiful vintage homes and vineyards. Unfortunately, many of our old winding scenic roads were build for less and slower traffic than we have these days, so it is difficult to slow down and appreciate the view. Walking the roads can also be dangerous but there are many quiet places close by to “go outside” , The Woodlawn Preserve with parking Brandywine Creed Road, is terrific for walking , running , biking and tubing along the Brandywine. The trail links up with Brandy wine creek State Park. The Chadds Ford Historical property on Rt.1, the Pennsbury Town park on Rt. 1and, of course Longwood gardens, Winterthur and the Tyler Arboretum are all within a few minutes’ drive. Regardless of the season, visiting any of these places or just being conscious of our surroundings while driving on our local roads can provide a bit of a mental break if we take the time to notice!