Tag Archives: West Woodlands of Burholme Park

Make a Day of it at Ryerss Museum and Library and Burholme Park

"Cortez taking Prisoner Montezuma"  by R.H. Schnider, 1856, hangs over the doorway in the 2nd Floor Gallery at Ryerss.

“Cortez taking Prisoner Montezuma” by R.H. Schnider, 1856, hangs over the doorway in the 2nd Floor Gallery at Ryerss.

Ryerss Museum and Library

Ryerss Museum and Library

Tours of the Ryerss Museum and Library are free and open to the public Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Museum galleries are located on the first and second floors. Also of interest is the family gallery on the first floor.  For book and history lovers you can make an appointment to visit the archives and view Robert Ryerss private collection of books dating back two centuries.

Library at Ryerss

Library at Ryerss

The library is located on the second floor and offers a eclectic collection of books for lending and has an outstanding children’s section.  There is ample parking and Ryerss and Burholme Park are only a few blocks from the Ryers Station on the Fox Chase Line and the SEPTA 24 bus stops nearby. To learn more about the Ryerss family and their impact on Philadelphia and the world please read: Robert W. Ryerss – The Legacy

POETS ON THE PORCH – 2015  Festival will be held on July 11th @ 1 p.m.

You can view more photographs of Ryerss Museum and Library at this link: https://www.flickr.com/photos/12065560@N04/sets/72157646510301296

4444912469_2c5973ab2e_oMake a day of it at Burholme Park while visiting Ryerss Museum and Library with the kids at the playground, a lazy afternoon picnic or hiking the West Woodlands. In addition there is a great miniature golf course, batting cages and arcade at the foot of Burholme hill.


You can view more photographs of Burholme Park, Ryerss Museum and the West Woodlands at these links:

Burholme Park: https://www.flickr.com/photos/12065560@N04/sets/72157602669224015 and https://www.flickr.com/photos/12065560@N04/sets/72157649581429746

West Woodlands of Burholme Park

West Woodlands: https://www.flickr.com/photos/12065560@N04/sets/72157646118096500

IMG_1360-g emil reutter lives and writes in the Fox Chase neighborhood of Philadelphia, Pa. You can find him at:


Report on The West Woodlands of Burholme Park

g emil reutter 

14751631840_816783f6b2_oThe West Woodlands are located in Burhlome Park in the Fox Chase neighborhood of Philadlephia. The Woodlands are separated from the main park by the driveway to the Fox Chase Cancer Center. There are no signs identifying the Woodlands as part of Burholme Park and the only path maintained is a wide cinder pathway along the upper ridge of the valley that a small stream runs through, which hereafter will be referred to as Burholme Park Creek. The woodlands are under-utilized and are neglected by routine park maintenance. The east side of Burholme park with Ryerss Museum and Library, picnic areas, playground, sports field and the Burholme Golf Range are nicely maintained, however the Woodlands are another story. Buholme park was once simply known as Burholme, the summer residence of the Ryerss family and once had an active stable, greenhouses and farming.

Burholme Park Creek 


The Burholme Park Creek flows along the Philadelphia/Montgomery border from the northwest side of the park to the southwest side of the park under Cottman Avenue into Montgomery County and empties into the Tookany Creek in Cheltenham Village.
14751281728_fb6f7b37cf_o There are numerous fallen trees in the creek causing damming and erosion of the creek banks. One tree and earthen dam is located about forty yards of so from the tunnel that carries the creek under Cottman Avenue that was built in 1938 as part of the WPA project. 14751794847_c6bb2d5755_oIn the woods adjacent to this area are numerous plastic trash bags filling the forest floor. The creek itself is a beautiful site with numerous rock formations along its length. A cleanup of the creek by Fairmount Park and or Montgomery would seem in order to restore the full beauty of this gem of a small creek.

 The West Woodlands 


The Woodlands hold many treasures for one who is bold enough to navigate their way through remnants of pathways. In addition to numerous types of trees and other vegetation, there are great rock formations as one descends from the ridge of the park into the Burholme Park Creek Valley. There are numerous 14751863637_64dff1f517_ochipmunks, groundhogs, hawks, blue heron and various species of other birds as well as an opportunity to observe a deer or two and an occasional fox. The paths are not maintained and are often blocked by fallen trees and an abundance of poison ivy. The paths are not identified nor are there any markers to return a hiker back to the main park.  There are numerous fallen trees and trees that are about to fall throughout the woodlands.

14751350677_fa8acd9f4b_oThere are six locations within the Woodlands that appear to be routine party spots for underage drinking. These areas are cluttered with broken bottles, plastic, beer cases and other debris. These folks who do utilize the Woodlands fail to clean up after themselves and there seems to be little attention paid to their activity by Fairmount Park Guards, city or suburban police.  A hunters lean to constructed of wood has been in place since at least 2011.

14937694232_505fcd206f_o (1)The West Woodlands of Burholme Park are a neglected treasure of the Fairmount Park System. Proper signage would draw more visitors to this small oasis in Northeast Philadelphia. A cleanup of the Burholme Park Creek would restore it to full beauty, proper maintenance of paths and a removal of broken or damaged trees would make the park more user friendly.

More photographs of The West Woodlands of Burholme Park here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/12065560@N04/sets/72157646118096500/