Happy Summer River People -
I hope that you are enjoying this amazing weather. Summer is clearly in full swing at Willamette Riverkeeper, and we are as busy as ever. We've already hosted numerous River Discovery trips, Aquatic Invasives Weed pulls, and Trashy Tuesday cleanup expeditions. Each of these have resulted in tangible improvements for our river. We've also been doing a lot of other work, and planning new projects.
Early next month, Willamette Riverkeeper will conduct a major study of a series of freshwater mussel beds at Norwood Island over the course of four days of intense field work. This native species, in the right conditions, can live to be over 100 years old. They filter the Willamette's water, and are subject to the various pollutants that we inject into our river systems. By the end of the summer, we will have a greater understanding of their overall population, their age classes, and whether they are reproducing in this area.
Freshwater mussels are just one example of why reducing pollution in our river system matters - a lot. The impact of a range of pollutants on species such as the Western Pearlshell mussel can be significant, yet today too little is done to understand the range of human-created pollutants that are ever present in the water, and how those chemicals can accumulate in a range of species over time.
WR is taking action to reduce toxics, from efforts at the local level to reduce the use of pesticides, to our work in the newly created Willamette Toxics Reduction Task Force to help eliminate historic and newly created sources of pollution. The need is clear - we all need to do more to reduce inputs to our river system.
Please join us and help support our work on this front. What we do is tangible, measurable, and effective. If you can, support our work on a monthly basis with a small donation that can enable us to get on the river, work at the policy level, and to educate folks about the need to do more to limit the use and release of the many toxic chemicals that can be found in the Willamette today. Have a great summer and thank you for your support!
Riverkeeper & Executive Director
Get your hands dirty and make a difference! Join one of our trashy events this month:
Willamette Riverkeeper is again partnershing with the City of Eugene River House Outdoor Center to provide river access at this month's Trashy Tuesday in the Eugene-Springfield area. This month, we'll be focusing on picking up trash from the river section between Island Park and Alton Baker. If you are bringing your own boat, please meet at the Island Park boat ramp at 8:30AM to unload and run shuttles to Alton Baker Park. We plan to be on the water no later than 9AM.
The River House will provide rafts, PFDs and paddling gear for those without boats. BYOB paddlers must be able to paddle in Class II water. Please indicate BYOB when you register. Because we will be working from the water, and there will be limited space in boats, you MUST REGISTER to participate (see directions below).
To register, please visit the City of Eugene Recreation site here. Click "Register for programs/classes, then use the left navigation bar on the next page and click "ADULT OUTDOOR" activities and choose "kayaking, rafting and canoeing" from the drop down menu. All classes and programs will appear on the right side of the page. Scroll down to Trashy Tuesdays and add class. There is a $35 optional fee for new or renewing WR members - otherwise this is a free event!
PFDs are REQUIRED and will be provided for those without, as long as we know you are coming! Please wear closed-toe shoes, long sleeves and pants. Bring water and appropriate layers for the weather. Gloves, pickers, garbage bags and tarps will be provided.
Tuesday, 8/8 from 8:30am to about 1:30pm
Meet at Island Park boat ramp
Join us at the recently improved Portland Boathouse dock, and help us pick up trash in the central part of Portland along the Willamette. Park in the 2 hour visitor parking spaces near the building, on the street, or ride your bike.
Reserve a seat in one of our canoes, or bring your own boat. We will provide trash bags, gloves, and trash pickers. Dress for the weather and paddling.
We will spend about an hour or so on the water.
Tuesday, 8/15 from 11:30am to 1:30pm
Ross Island Evening Tour: 8/8
You are invited to join us, along with Portland Parks, for an evening canoe adventure to explore Portland's urban island wilderness- Ross Island, of course!
On this exclusive tour you'll be guided through the island's verdant interior (which is closed to the general public), learning about Ross Island's history, and the work we are doing to improve its habitat.
Tuesday, August 8th, 5:00pm - 8:30pm
$20 registration includes a seat in a canoe, paddle, and PFD.
Where: Meet in the gravel lot at above the river access ramp, next to the Portland Boathouse parking lot (1515 SE Water Ave, Portland, 97214)
Bring: Dress appropriately for the weather and bring extra layers. Tall rubber boots and long pants work well for walking around the island. Bring water, snacks, and a picnic dinner.
Aquatic Invasive Paddle + Pull: 8/30
When: Wednesday, August 30th, 9:30am - 3:30pm
Join Willamette Riverkeeper and Benton SWCD in our effort to protect fish and wildlife habitat while we paddle on the Willamette in the Corvallis Reach. Details about where to meet us will follow with an email after you register.
Help identify and remove aquatic invasive plants and learn about the threat they pose for water quality on the Willamette River. Our stewardship project will focus on hand pulling Water Primrose (Ludwigia spp).
Bring your own boat or reserve a space in a Willamette Riverkeeper canoe. For this trip please plan to bring along plenty of water, a warm layer, sun protection, brown bag lunch, and snacks.
Green Business is Great Business
Every October, Willamette Riverkeeper leads a group of 1000 volunteers out to dozens of sites along the river from Eugene to Scappoose to do one thing, and one thing only: TAKE OUT THE TRASH!
If you own, work for, or frequent a river-loving business, and you want the whole valley to know it, this is your chance!
The Great Willamette Clean Up is the ONLY river-wide cleanup for the river we know and love. So if you're ready for your business to be great, and to make a great big difference for your river and your community, sponsor the Great Willamette Clean Up today!
Riverside Movie Screening: 7/30
If you haven't yet seen Freshwater Illustrated's Willamette River documentary "
," don't miss this opportunity to do so!