Chappaqua SD's decision on the fate of much debated woodlands looms

The board meeting was held inside Horace Greeley High School. Among the issues they’re expected to decide on is the sale of Buttonhook Forest.

News 12 Staff

Sep 15, 2022, 12:10 AM

Updated 621 days ago

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The Chappaqua School Board has not yet made a decision on the fate of Buttonhook Forest.
A meeting was held Wednesday where many people wore green to show their support for preserving the land and oppose its development.
The meeting opened with School Board President Jane Shepardson making it clear that the board is not ready to make a decision on its sale. She said they want to gather more information.
The sale has generated controversy by some in the community arguing that this land is sacred to Native Americans, rich with history and possibly burial grounds.
Some Native American experts say there are stone effigies and architecture on the land.
The newly formed nonprofit Friends of Buttonhook submitted a $1.25 million bid to buy the land after a developer, who wanted to build luxury homes, dropped his bid.
Activist Tracey Bilsky hopes that the board accepts the group’s proposal.
“There are animals that live there. They're bobcats, coyotes, foxes, they're birds of prey. They're Hawks,” she says. “There's a Native American ceremonial site that this hilltop site in Valley Ridge, and Chappaqua was once a ceremonial site for the Native Americans.”
Some people in the community support developing the property, which they argue would bring in additional tax dollars to the community.


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