Visit us online!
View this email in your browser
Perhaps more than ever, I am grateful to have the White River winding through our valley. Our access to a clean, cold river during the Covid-19 crisis is a daily reminder of the importance of our efforts to keep the White River watershed healthy and resilient! I want to take this opportunity to share how the WRP is handling Covid's impacts and to highlight our work this spring.

In response to Covid-19, our first priority has been the safety and wellness of the WRP community - staff, members, donors, volunteers, and partners. With this in mind, the WRP office is closed until further notice and staff are working remotely (the best way to contact us is via email - follow this link for contact information).

We also cancelled or postponed all in-person events this spring, and are assessing the status of events planned for summer. We will keep you posted as we make decisions. And we will continue to monitor new guidance from the CDC and the state of Vermont, so we can make informed decisions about the safest ways to accomplish our work. 

Despite these adjustments, the WRP continues our work to bring people and communities together to protect and improve clean water, fish and wildlife habitat, flood resilience, and recreational river access in the White River valley. Here are some recent highlights:
  • We are figuring out how to do field work, differently. Our summer volunteer programs will occur, with appropriate Covid-19 protocols in place. The Water Quality Monitoring season kicked-off on May 27 and the White River Water Trail site steward program begins in mid-June. (Please see more information below about opportunities to get involved!).
  • Construction projects will be different as well. We are planning to implement several restoration projects this summer and fall and will post project updates on our Facebook and Instagram pages - please "like" or "follow" us there to stay posted!
As always THANK YOU for your continued support! We hope that all of you are staying healthy, safe, and informed during this rapidly-evolving health crisis. If you have questions or suggestions, please do not hesitate to be in touch.

Mary Russ, Executive Director


Seeking White River Water Trail site stewards

The WRP is seeking interested volunteers to help us provide safe recreational access to the White River by stewarding a White River Water Trail site in 2020! Volunteer stewardship responsibilities include:
  • Visiting a specific White River Water Trail (WRWT) site once a month from June through September;
  • Gathering data on trash, hazards, and site improvement needs;
  • Collecting trash in the trash bags provided (optional); and
  • Reporting data via an electronic SurveyMonkey form.

Follow this link to see the WRWT sites across the White River watershed that require a site steward!


Bareroot trees await fall planting projects

Spring usually finds WRP staff planting thousands of trees along the river with work crews, school groups, and community volunteers. This year we decided to postpone our tree planting projects until the fall, with the exception of one partner-led, 980-stem planting at the Brookhaven School in Chelsea (THANK YOU, Redstart!). But we did have to find a summer home for 1,200 trees that were delivered in mid-April. THANK YOU to Hurricane Flats Farm in South Royalton for allowing us to plant in a fallow section of their field. The next time you drive by the farm, look for 2 rows of trees between the green houses in the field by the river. Our plan is to dig-up those trees this fall and plant them - along with 2,300 trees from a local nursery - at 10 sites along the White River!

Interpretive sign installed at former Eaton Dams site

In early-May the WRP installed an interpretive sign at the Upper & Lower Eaton Dam Removal project site on the First Branch of the White River in Royalton. The WRP worked with local contractors to remove both dams last summer. The interpretive sign provides some history of the Mill Village site, which the dams were built to power in the 1770s. The sign also includes a map of the site and historic photos provided by the Royalton Historical Society. Thanks to Vanasse Hangen Brustlin for developing the sign content!

Swim smart: 2020 water quality monitoring begins

Do you have a favorite swimming hole on the White River? Have you ever wondered how clean the water is? We do and we have! WRP staff and trained volunteers monitor water quality at 22 swimming holes every other Wednesday during the summer months. Volunteers grab a water sample that we analyze to see if the water at these swimming spots is clean enough, according to Vermont's water quality standard for recreational use. We share those monitoring results on our website and our Facebook and Instagram pages every Thursday afternoon following monitoring. For instance the results for the May 27, 2020 test date are available online now. Contact us to receive the bacteria monitoring results directly via email.

2020 Trout in the Classroom program wraps-up!

Since January the WRP has been working with 16 classrooms to raise native brook trout as part of Vermont's Trout in the Classroom (TIC) program. When schools closed in March as a result of the Governor's stay-home-order, teachers had to make decisions about the fate of the fish. Nine of the participating teachers released their trout into the river, four kept the trout in their tanks at the school, and three took the trout home. Some teachers found ways to use the trout as a component of their remote teaching plans. They engaged students in daily and weekly maintenance activities, an opportunity to learn about water chemistry, trout feeding, and the excitement of releasing trout into the river. (Follow this link to see the Stockbridge Central School's 5th/6th grade classroom blog). THANK YOU to the teachers and students for participating and THANK YOU to the Greater Upper Valley Chapter of Trout Unlimited for supporting the 2020 White River TIC program!
Stay posted:
Like us on Facebook or follow us on Instagram to learn more about what's happening at the WRP - we post project updates and photos, water quality monitoring results, volunteer opportunities, upcoming events, and more on a regular basis!
Copyright © 2020 White River Partnership, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp