About NeVar and NeVara

NeVar and NeVara are Common Ravens, known for being one of the most intelligent of birds.  Yes, these images are cartoon characters but be sure to take their purpose seriously. They, like all the plants and animals of the Range, inspired the creation of this website. Their participation in telling the Mount Tom Range Story helps promote awareness of the entire range. They urge you and your family and friends to view all this website's pages. Visit the range as often as you can. Get to know its trails, flora and fauna. Spread the word that preserving the Mount Tom Range largely as undeveloped open space is in everyone's economic and ecological best interests.

For more about the Common Raven, log on to Cornell School of Ornithology at:

Got animal, bird, reptile, plant, objects of note, etc. to share? E-mail with a short description to nevar13@comcast.net.

Whiting Street Reservoir

Image courtesy of a friend of the Mt. Tom Range

A Whiting Street Reservoir Study was created by order of the Holyoke City Council in 2019.  It’s committee, the Whiting Street Reservoir Study Committee ( WSRSC ) was formed in 2020 and given a charge “to consider all aspects of the Whiting Street Reservoir to include reviewing costs to maintain and repurposing it for future use as well as ensuring that reasonable environmental considerations are maintained.” The WSRSC would also address future uses of Whiting and the surrounding area.  By 2021 it had became clear the focus of yesteryear had changed much and would call for numerous stakeholders to come together to better serve our city as well as the ecology of Mt. Tom.

To accomplish its charge, the Committee decided on the following tasks:

• Investigate the laws and protections that currently exist for the reservoir

• Investigate the effect of the current uses and any future plans of the adjoining
properties to the reservoir

• Hold a public meeting to gather public input and understand future needs and
wants regarding the reservoir, and

• Consider potential new revenue sources including expanded uses

After completing the above tasks, the Committee has reached the following conclusions and recommends the following:

• Develop a Vision Statement and North Holyoke Master Area Plan to guide use, protect resources, engage stakeholders and benefit the citizens of Holyoke.

• Implement the vision and major components of the North Holyoke Master Area
Plan, by establishing an Areawide Management Council, sponsored by the City of Holyoke; the Council would include adjoining property owners or managers, and engage citizens, in order to coordinate area management.

• Ensure long term protection of the Whiting Street Reservoir (WSR) as a resource for the Citizens of Holyoke, through conservation restrictions or other means

• Assure availability of the reservoir to serve future water needs for the City of

• Allow for passive recreation while enhancing visitor safety, environmental
education, and accessibility to the communities of Holyoke and to the public

Holyoke City Council, on January 31, 2023, held a public hearing in Council Chambers to review and share its recommendations. The complete study is at:  https://storage.googleapis.com/proudcity/holyokema/uploads/2022/11/Whiting-Reservoir-Study-Committee-Final-Report-of-Findings-and-Recommendations.pdf

Future of Whiting Reservoir is assured:

Competition of Whiting’s dam rebuilding is complete, assuring a safe backup supply of drinking water for Holyoke resident. Here’s an image.