Egremont’s ‘Turtle Man’ takes steps toward preserving Smiley’s Pond

EGREMONT — Ari Zorn fully embraces his nickname of “Turtle Man”, he says, as long as it brings attention to his long-term goal of preserving Mill Pond, known locally as Smiley’s Pond.

Zorn, an Egremont resident, has been assisting a number of nature and conservation agencies in an effort to maintain the 121 acres of water that lies where state Routes 23 and 41 merge in South Egremont.

Zorn calls the pond a “gem” in the area and says he takes on the responsibility of treating the pond as his own backyard. He’s invested hundreds of hours into making the habitat safe for the snapping turtles that call the pond their home.

So when the pond and its four-bedroom property were listed for sale earlier this summer, Zorn took to a Facebook group he runs, the Friends of Smiley’s Pond, to announce his goal of preserving the Berkshire landmark.

The property for sale, which includes the entire pond, is listed at $995,000 by the Great Barrington based Lance Vermeulen Real Estate, Inc. Lauren Rosen, the listing agent for the property, confirmed the pond is included in the sale of the property at Hillsdale Road.

The listing reads: “Once in a lifetime opportunity to own a Berkshire landmark, Smiley’s Pond!”

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