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The Cienega Outook                                           August 2014
Educational Opportunities 
 In the Cienega Watershed  
In May, the Cienega Watershed Partnership facilitated a meeting of organizations and educators working on the Las Cienegas National Conservation Area (LCNCA) with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).  Nine groups participated. In only 2 hours we identified several projects and programs that offer youth and others out-of-the classroom learning opportunities.  These programs vary by length (one day to 9 sessions), by ages, content and experiences, and by season.  All of great opportunities for educational experiences.

CWP's Annamarie Schaecher has created an Educational Opportunities web page (next article) to provide information on using the Las Cienegas and watershed as an educational setting. 
Please help us spread the word about this web site to teachers, parents, and others who would like this information.   

In This Newsletter
Educational Opportunties
Sonoita Open House
YES! 2014
Learning in the Watershed
Make Your Voice Heard
Connecting with the Watershed
Who are we-the CWP?
Featured Partner
Introducing the Learning Opportunities Web Site
Home Page for Educational Opportunities at

The "Educational Opportunities at Las Cienegas National Conservation Area" web site aims to familiarize educators about the many resources available to teach about the area in order to contextualize students' learning.  


The web site is a collection of the many articles, reports and videos about the LCNCA. By having these materials in one place, teachers will find designing projects around Las Cienegas easier to implement. While studying about Las Cienegas in a virtual manner may not be ideal, we hope that the web site will inspire students and teachers to visit the area and see for themselves what a special place it is.

Living in the Watershed 

Attend the Sonoita Open House August 23 from 9 til noon.  At this open house at the Sonoita-Elgin Fire District Station, you can have your questions addressed, learn updates, or let others know of issues in the Cienega Watershed and Sonoita Plain

The open house format allows you to interact with agencies and organizations from 9 til 11, followed by brief presentations and then an audience question session.  What topics? That depends on you but some ideas:
  • Mesquite removal, prairie dog colonies,  
  • Native fish and frogs and habitat restoration
  • Youth projects and environmental education
  • Updates from the Bureau of Land Management and Coronado National Forest, from the US Fish and Wildlife Service and Arizona Game and Fish  

More info?  contact


Youth Engaged Stewardship YES! 2014

Twelve teens from area high schools improved their leadership skills while making a difference at Las Cienegas National Conservation area in June and July. They formed a Youth Board, designed and implemented restoration projects to restore sacaton grasslands and wetland ponds.  On July 19, the youth hosted friends and families to help remove invasive plants like cattails and transplant desired plants at two Cieneguita ponds.  And evidently they had fun! 
The YES! program follows a nine-session framework developed by the YES! Partners:  CWP, Ironwood Tree Experience, Empire High School, and the Bureau of Land Management---represented by Shela McFarlin, Suzanne Dhruv, Christine In-Albon, and Annamarie Schaecher.  Scott Boling served as the BLM liaison and ecologist.  The 2014 program benefited from scientists and land managers who gave their time to joint students in the field or meetings including:  Dennis Caldwell, Jason Field,  Gita Bodner, Mead Mier, Karen Simms and Robert Fink.  Financial support from provided by the BLM, CWP, YES! Partners, Summit Hut and Freeport-McMoran.

The youth graduated July 26 and received a stipend, certificate, and letter of recommendation from the YES! Partners.

YES 2014
YES! 2014 graduates plus one

YES! 2015?   Of course!  We only need funding and students.
Questions?    Contact
Learning in the Watershed  D. Caldwell's Art

There are frogs like the Chiracahua Leopard Frog that we are trying to protect and there are toads.  Dennis Caldwell in this short video by Annamarie Schaecher, introduces a toad from Las Cienegas at:


The FROG conservation project, is a great place to learn about many more native and invasive aquatic species: 


Sustaining the Watershed 
Sign on to support the EPA to uphold the Clean Water Act protections of the Waters of the US including our desert intermittent and ephemeral rivers and wetlands, which in the arid west have disproportionate value to wildlife and ecosystem services to humans.  Make sure to mention that Cienega Creek is one of the last lowland perennial creeks in southern Arizona.
Take Action to protect our community and water from irresponsible mining.  Tell your member of Congress to support 1872 Mining Law Reform.  Mention Cienega Creek and Rosemont to put this on the national radar.  If Raul Grijalva is your Congressman---thank him for introducing the mining reform.  
Sign the petition by Save the Scenic Santa Ritas - Petition the White House and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to protect the Santa Rita Mountains in AZ from the proposed Rosemont Mine 

Please share! 

If you use social media, such as Twitter or Facebook, we encourage you to use #SaveCienega on your relevant posts that celebrate and protect the rich landscape.  

Share the Love  Las Cienegas 2011 Shela
There are many ways to learn and love the land in the watershed.  Some spots speak to us in multiple experiences.  We seek to learn about the plants, the animals, the history, the ecosystem that connects them.

But let the sounds take over sometimes.  Along Cienega Creek, they offer a unique feeling where water collects and noisily bubbles over in a natural rock tank and trees and grasses bend in a slight breeze to add the background sounds. 

I especially like this spot---we were lost actually, looking for an historic site---but found something else instead.      Shela    


Youth make an impact at Las Cienegas, July 10, 2014

The Cienega Watershed Partnership facilitates cooperative actions that steward the natural and cultural resources of the Cienega Watershed while enabling sustainable human use.

Visit our website at for the latest updates on the Youth Engaged Stewardship summer projects, videos form the Science on the Sonoita Plains,  and Forest Service response to CWP objections to the proposed mine in the Santa Ritas.


Thank you YES! 2014 Partners

Abram Chacara
Alfredo Vasquez
Ellie Mark
Jacob Cooper
Robert Rojo
Ally Friberg-Landon
Aidan Stonum
Daisy Galvan
Cassidy D'Oca
Christian Scott
Amanda Gilliland
Justine Chavez
Luca Valente
Simon In- Albon

Shela McFarlin Chris In-Albon
Suzanne Dhruv
Annamarie Schaecher
Scott Boling

Dennis Caldwell
Jason Field
Gita Bodner
Mead Mier
Robert Fink
Karen Simms

Bureau of Land Management
Ironwood Tree Experience
Vail/Empire High School
Summit Hut
The Nature Conservancy
Arizona Game and Fish Dept.




Martie Maierhauser, Chairman

David Scalero

Shela McFarlin

Mead Mier

Larry Fisher

Kelly Mott Lacroix

Thomas Meixner
Chistine In-Albon



Dennis Caldwell
Arlan Colton
Mac Donaldson
Julia Fonseca
Trevor Hare
Travis Huxman
Laura Lopez-Hoffman
Lynsey Miller
Dan Robinette
Jennifer Ruyle
Bill Savary
Karen Simms
Steven Strom
Beth Sullivan
Ian Tomlinson
Jeff Williamson








We are recruiting additional Board Members

Please contact a Board member if you are interested in knowing more!

Cienega Watershed Partnership

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