Environmental activists protest A.D. Makepeace at political fundraiser

Sep 9, 2022

Advocates of the organization “Save the Pine Barrens” held signs across the street from a political fundraising event on Thursday evening as part of their ongoing protest of the A.D. Makepeace Company and its alleged strip-mining of local land.

The small group of protesters huddled alongside Tihonet Road, across the street from the cranberry company’s main headquarters and down the road from where, they claim, the company is destroying local ecosystems.

“It is a political issue,” protester Meg Sheehan said while standing on the sandy shoulder of Tihonet Road. “That’s why we’re here.”

The event unfolding across the street was a political fundraiser and meet-and-greet between U.S. Congressional Republican candidate Jesse Brown, with State Rep. Susan Gifford attending as a “special guest.”

The Save the Pine Barrens group has long protested the solar projects planned and constructed by A.D. Makepeace. The group argues that the development destroys globally rare pine barren ecosystems and threatens the health of the Plymouth-Carver sole source aquifer, which supplies drinking water to nearby localities.

A representative from the A.D. Makepeace Company provided this statement on the protest: “The individual organizing this protest has been voicing fabricated complaints about the A.D. Makepeace Company and other cranberry growers for years, and her complaints have repeatedly been determined to be unfounded.

“In this instance, she is protesting at an event on private property organized by a group whose only connection to us is that they are renting our function space for two hours.”

Among the dozen or so protesters who lined the side of the road, most held signs or banners urging A.D. Makepeace to “stop the trucks,” and “Hands OFF the Pine Barrens!”

As protesters called out and shook their signs, they occasionally caught the eye of fundraiser participants across the street. When activists noticed the event attendees looking their way, they quickly pivoted to hold their signs higher and direct their message to the onlookers.

The goal Thursday was “to raise awareness and to let Makepeace know that we’re watching,” Sheehan said, “and we realize how politically connected that they are, and people are not happy about it.”