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WRWA Events

WRWA sponsors or participates in a variety of events during the year. Many of these events offer opportunities for volunteers to get involved with watershed issues. The events listed below are those which are scheduled for the next few months. Details are provided in the boxes to the right and below. Information about events from past years can be accessed by clicking on the year of interest below.

Upcoming Events (2017)

Sat, Mar 25 - Annual River Symposium
Sat, Apr 22 - Spring River Clean-Up (Westfield)
Sun, Apr 23 - Spring River Clean-Up (Agawam)
Thu, May 18 - Annual Meeting
Sun, May 21 - Fish Ladder Open House
Sat, Jun 17 - Westfield River Canoe Cruise
Sat, Sep 16 - Fly Fishing Clinic

Ongoing - The Watershed Waltz (DVD)
Ongoing - 1955 Flood (streaming)

Previous Events:

| 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 |
2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002

The Ups and Downs of a River:
Floods and Droughts on the Westfield

Save the Date! WRWA's 23rd annual River Symposium will be held in the Scanlon Banquet Hall on the campus of Westfield State University on Saturday, March 25. The theme of this year's program is "Ups and Downs of a River: Floods and Droughts on the Westfield". The keynote speaker will be David Billips (City of Westfield Water Department), and other morning speakers will include Karl Leiker (WSU meteorologist), Nancy Bobskill (Zero Waste), Matt Colemann (US Army Corps of Engineers), and Chris Chamberland (Berkshire Design Group). An afternoon field trip to the Knightville and Littleville Dams rounds out the program. The symposium program includes brief descriptions of the talks as well as the detailed schedule for the day.

Spring River Cleanup
(in honor of Earth Day)

Our annual spring river cleanup will be held on Saturday, April 22 in Westfield and on Sunday, April 23 in Agawam. The Westfield crew will meet at 9:00 a.m. at the small parking area on the north side of Meadow St. in Westfield (just east of the south end of the Westfield River bridges) on Saturday, with smaller groups then assigned to different areas along the river or its tributaries. The Agawam group will meet at 9:00 a.m. at Pynchon Point on River Rd. (right before bridge underpass) on Sunday. Wear clothes that you won't mind getting wet and dirty, and it's helpful if you can bring your own gloves (we'll supply trash bags, and gloves for those who need them). Plan on working til noon or 1:00 p.m. If you've got questions, contact Mark Damon (572-9991, Westfield) or Sheryl Becker (413-374-1921, Agawam).

Fish Ladder Open House
(in West Springfield)

Your once-a-year opportunity to visit the West Springfield Fish Ladder will be on Sunday, May 21 this year, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. - this date is earlier than we've usually done the event, which should give us a better chance of seeing more fish. Parking is available near the old Southworth Paper Company building at 150 Front Street, and the fish ladder is an easy quarter-mile walk along the power canal. WRWA board members will be available to guide visitors around the facility and to answer questions. Down in the "pit", you'll have a chance to see fish (shad, lamprey, maybe even an Atlantic salmon!) moving upstream. After last year's thunderstorms, we're hoping for better weather this year! Bring sunscreen and some water for the roughly 30-60 minutes that you'll likely spend visiting the site.

Westfield River Canoe Cruise
(Westfield to Robinson St Park)

We've scheduled our annual paddle on the Westfield River, from downtown Westfield to Robinson State Park in Agawam, for Saturday, June 17, in conjunction with Robinson State Park Day. Registration will take place from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. at the parking area just east of the Great River Bridges in Westfield (accessible from Meadow St., on the southeast side of the bridges). Following registration, canoes and kayaks will be dropped off at the end of Hanover St., where we'll arrange a shuttle for participants to park their cars at the end of the cruise in Robinson State Park and be returned to the launch area. The cruise will start at 11:00 a.m. This 6-7 mile paddle is mostly flat water, with a couple of quick-water sections, and usually takes about 3 hours to complete. You may be asked to portage around one or two difficult areas on the upper section, depending on water levels. Cost is $10 per paddler or $20 per family to cover the cost of insurance and snacks at the end of the cruise.

WRWA Programs
For Sale/Viewing

A new version of The Watershed Waltz, a puppet show about healthy watersheds intended for elementary school children, was produced in 2011 and remains available. The original show was developed by Marmelade Productions in 2008, with funding from The Highlands Community Initiative (a project of The Trustees of Reservations) and WRWA, and was performed at many schools throughout the watershed and beyond. Copies of the DVD are available for $15 each (includes shipping and handling) - make your check payable to "Westfield River Watershed Association" and send it along with your request to: WRWA, PO Box 1764, Westfield, MA 01086-1764

Also still available is Five Feet and Rising: The Flood of '55, a 27-minute documentary produced by Jack Hayward of Hayward Communications and co-produced by Mark Saint Jean of Westfield State University in cooperation with WRWA in 2005 on the 50th anniversary of the Westfield River floods of August 1955. The film includes a number of interviews with Westfield residents recalling their experience of this largest recorded flood along the Westfield River. The program can be streamed online at https://vimeo.com/90261638. Enjoy!!

Please forward any suggestions or corrections to Mike Young at myoung@westfield.ma.edu