LEWISTON – With a parking lot and fittings for two bathrooms in place, work on the Thorncrag Bird Sanctuary will last for another year at least.

The Stanton Bird Club has picked up another year to complete the first phase of its planned expansion, according to President Susan Hayward.

“We’ll do the rest of the work as soon as we have the money available,” Hayward said. She said the club hopes to finish building the bathrooms, a storage area, a new bridge and a gazebo in 2008.

“We’re also investigating whether we’ll be able to build handicapped-accessible trails next year,” she said.

A second phase, not scheduled yet, would build a nature center on the site.

“That would have a place for meetings and classes and an actual place to get out of the weather, as opposed to simple shelter – like the gazebo,” she said.

Work on the parking lot closed the main entrance, off Montello Street, this summer.

“But everything is open, even during the winter,” she said. “Our new lot will be plowed for snowshoers and cross-country skiers to use.”

Finishing the work on the bathrooms next summer will allow the club to begin offering programs for students in Androscoggin County. The group offered guided tours elementary school students in the 1990s, but has not done that for several years.

“We really want to get back into that,” she said. “Schools still bring students here, but we don’t do anything to help and we need to get back into that.”


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