The Friends of Fort Williams Park (formerly, Fort Williams Park Foundation) was established in 2001 as an independent 501(c)3 non-profit organization whose mission is to preserve and enhance the natural resources and visitor experience of Fort Williams Park by providing planning and stewardship for projects that support the Park’s ecology, accessibility, and open space. Our business operations and any work that we do in the Park is paid for by private donations, proceeds from events, and by grants from charitable foundations and the national government.
The Friends is governed by a Board of Directors comprised of a diverse group of professionals, business owners, community leaders and volunteers. Each board member serves on at least one of six committees (Education, Executive, Finance, Marketing, Resource Development and Volunteer).
Our committee activities, business operations and work in the Park is coordinated and managed by a full-time Executive Director and a part-time Office and Development Administrator. Our landscape work is accomplished by two part-time seasonal landscape gardeners, hundreds of volunteers from throughout Greater Portland, and hired landscape contractors.
Fort Williams Park is a 90-acre, town-owned and operated oceanfront park in Cape Elizabeth, Maine. The Park has a significant marine and military history reflected in the mosaic of historic relics within a variety of natural and designed landscapes, including a beach, tidal pools, rocky cliffs, sunny lawns, woodlands, historic oak groves, shrub thickets, pollinator gardens, and a pond – all within earshot of rolling surf and with views towards the islands of Casco Bay and the Atlantic Ocean.
Only 5 miles and a 15-minute drive from the center of Portland, Maine, Fort Williams Park is readily available and freely accessible to all of the 513,102 people who live within Greater Portland. This includes an urban agglomeration of 203,914 people – many who otherwise have little access to the coastline. The Park welcomes over 800,000 visitors each year from all over the world; about 45% from New England with the rest coming from elsewhere in the United States, Canada and around the world. Park officials estimate that 40% of all visitors are children.