In the Community

The RWA has nine recreation areas in 13 communities throughout Greater New Haven that offer great water views and four seasons of fun as part of our Claire C. Bennitt Recreation Program. With an RWA recreation permit, you can enjoy miles of wide, well-kept trails through a wilderness that is just minutes from your home. We provide easy-to-read trail maps and offer special family events such as nature walks and fishing derbies.

Buying a recreation permit is easy and affordable. Permits range in cost from $25 for a one-year Individual Permit to $50 for a two-year Family Permit. Veterans, seniors, students and the disabled always enjoy $5 off! Get more information on recreation permit options and costs. Other permits available include a Horseback Riding Family Permit (Genesee Tract only) and an Organizational Permit. For more information on those permits, please call our Recreation Department at 203-401-2654 or email us at

We are happy that so many people are exploring the great outdoors. However, the RWA Police Department has encountered an uptick in trespassing and vandalism on our properties. RWA recreation areas must be entered through the approved access points indicated on trail maps. Furthermore, an RWA recreation permit provides access to our designated recreation areas, not to all RWA properties.

Any person entering RWA properties illegally can have their permit revoked and is subject to fines or arrest by the RWA Police Department. If you see anyone trespassing on RWA properties, please contact us at 203-401-2525 to report it.


Opie Scavenger Hunt – All Recreation Areas

The RWA Recreation Program is holding a scavenger hunt for permit holders to enjoy while many  fall festivals have been cancelled this year. One sign is hung at each recreation area. The signs are in trees, but easily visible from the ground. Permit holders are invited to take photos of at least six of the nine signs. Include yourself or friends and family in the photos if possible. Email those photos to The first 40 permit holders who submit at least six photos of different signs will receive an “Opie’s World – Tap Into Nature“ patch. After that, every permit holder who submits six photos of different signs will be entered into a drawing for a $25 Amazon gift card.  Deadline to send in the photos is November 30. Get out on the trails and good luck!

Full details:

  • Photos become the property of the Regional Water Authority.
  • Each sign will be specific to the area where it is located, therefore photos must show the sign where it is mounted and in a way that it can be identified.
  • To receive the patch and qualify for the gift card drawing, the photos of six of the nine signs must be emailed to by November 30. The permit holder’s name, permit number and address should be included in the email to verify that they are a current permit holder.
  • One patch per qualifying permit holder.
  • One chance in the gift card drawing per qualifying permit holder.
  • Drawing for the gift card will take place on December 1 and the winner will be notified by email at the address that they used to submit the photos.

Recreation Program Photo Contest

We are holding our 21st annual Recreation Photo Contest and are looking for the best photographs taken at RWA recreation areas by our permit holders. Bring along your camera while hiking, biking or fishing, and snap away! The contest is free and open to all RWA recreation permit holders – there is no entry fee.

The contest will have four finalists. Photos will be posted on Facebook and judged by the public. All finalists will be announced in April 2021. The person who takes the photo with the most “Likes” will receive a $100 gift certificate; the other three finalists will each receive $20 gift certificates. Entries must be received by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, February 27, 2021. Click here for a full list of rules. Contest questions can be addressed to Jeff Yale at 203-401-2746 or

Get or Renew Your Recreation Permit

Be sure to review our Recreation Program Rules and Regulations before purchase.

Special Discount: Use the Code "GoFish20" when purchasing your recreation permit to save 20%!


Permits available online include all Individual and Family permits. Click here to go to our secure website to purchase your recreation permit online. If you already have or have had a recreation permit with us, your username is your permit number without the leading zero(s); your password is your zip code. You will be prompted to change your username and password to something that is easier to remember.

By Mail

Download the permit application form, print it and complete the registration portion, and return it to us with your payment (check, MasterCard or VISA).

By Phone

Call our Recreation Department at 203-401-2654.

By Email

Email our Recreation Department at