Richfield Heritage Preserve
Crowell Hilaka , newly re-named Richfield Heritage Preserve, is Ohio's Hidden Treasure. 336 acres of winding streams, lakes, and wooded uplands, it was farmed by the pioneer Oviatt family and then became the estate of inventor Jim Kirby. During the 1920s Kirby constructed a patented lake, a mill to generate electric power, a house air-conditioned with spring water, and a dance hall built on springs. Upstream, the Neal family built their fairy tale houses and operated a thriving fruit farm. The land was purchased by the Cleveland Girl Scouts in 1937 and enclosed for the protection of the girls. As time passed, few in Richfield remembered the beautiful estates. In 2015, the property was purchased by the citizens of Richfield. It is being transformed into a park for public enjoyment.
The November 2016 cover story of the Richfield Times highlighted the ongoing discussion about the future of Richfield Heritage Preserve's Lower Lake, the famous patented lake constructed by Jim Kirby to provide water for his hydroelectric mill.
The article states that the RJRD does not have enough money to save the lake in its current form as well as save all of the historic structures on this property. What is not mentioned is that the RJRD knew at the time it was formed that this was true, and it planned to seek outside funding for the restoration of the property. As of this time, no such solicitation of funding has been sought.
The Richfield Historical Society is circulating a petition asking the RJRD to:
What are Friends of Crowell Hilaka ?
( aka FoCH. pronounced "folk" )
We are people who love Richfield Heritage Preserve - by any name! We want to see it become an ecological, recreational, historic, and educational resource for the public. Some of us are newcomers. Some of us have a past association. Some of us live in Richfield. Some of us don’t. But we all want to work together with the RJRD board to make this the best place it can be. more...
For over 90 years, Kirby's Mill has been an iconic and intriguing attraction.
Here, the Mill serves as the backdrop for wedding photos of David and Milissa Pinzone.
This video was produced by SkyCam.photography for the 2014 campaign.
A message of thanks......first published in Richfield Times , November 2015
Become a Member of FoCH
3rd Tuesday of every month. Everyone welcome!!
January 17, 2017 7:00 pm
Richfield Historical Society Museum
3907 Broadview Rd
Richfield, OH 44286
PIck up YOUR new map of Richfield Heritage Preserve at a meeting when you pay your 2017 dues.
The map is FREE !
Available ONLY to FoCHs !
Full color, 11 x17 map including the new Buckeye Trail segment that winds through the park. On the flip side is a summary of the park history: from Oviatts to RJRD!
Crowell Hilaka Memories Project: Camp alumni & families: What do you remember about Crowell Hilaka? What did it mean to you? We are collecting memories! Please click here for more information.
Kirby's Mill Restoration Project
planning in progress
Shop and help! FoCH has joined the Amazon Smile program. A portion of your purchases can come to FoCH. Visit the Donate page for details!
Help the RJRD: Richfield Joint Recreation District is always accepting volunteers.
Trick or Treat on the Trail Oct 23
The Property Map - Directions
Original content on the FoCH website is the property of FoCH. It cannot be used without permission. Permission can usually be obtained by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org and agreeing to attribute www.friendsofcrowellhilaka.org as the source