September 2019
Watershed Calendar
Dear ,

We are happy to announce that we have certified 11 new stream monitors in Fairfax County at our stream monitoring certification workshop!

In this month's watershed calendar, be sure to check out upcoming events where you can visit NVSWCD staff, the new application to the Youth Conservation Leadership Initiative program, and an article about stream monitoring written by our very own certified stream monitor, Valerie Bertha!

Ashley Palmer
Conservation Education Specialist
ashley.palmer@fairfaxcounty.gov
703-324-1423
Stream Monitoring Events
Sugarland Run Stream Monitoring Workshop
When : Sunday, September 8, 10:00am-12:30pm
Where : Sugarland Run Stream Valley Park, Herndon VA
Join NVSWCD as we discover aquatic life in Sugarland Run! This official NVSWCD stream monitoring workshop covers watershed health, what macroinvertebrates tell us about stream quality, and what you can do to prevent pollution in your local stream. This workshop will also help to prepare you to become a certified stream monitor. Registration is limited. Send questions to Ashley Palmer and RSVP here .

Accotink Creek Stream Monitoring Session
When : Saturday, September 14, 9:30am-11:30am
Where : Lake Accotink Park, Springfield VA
Join Friends of Lake Accotink Park and Friends of Accotink Creek for a rewarding and fun time for adults and children who enjoy helping our parks and environment by identifying and counting stream critters to document the health of the stream. RSVP here .

Deweys Creek Stream Monitoring Session
When : Saturday, September 14, 10:00am-12:00pm
Where : Dumfries VA
Parking location: Near 17119 Wayside Drive in Dumfries. Join the American Nepalese Society for monitoring at this adopted site.

Quantico Creek Stream Monitoring Session
When : Saturday, September 26, 10:00am-12:30pm
Where : Prince William Forest Park, Triangle VA
Location: 18100 Park Headquarters Road, Triangle, VA 22172 (GPS guide)
Parking: Parking Lot A on Scenic Drive. (From Main Park Entrance, turn left onto Scenic Drive and go all the way until you cross the Scenic Bridge).
Prince William Forest Park protects a large portion of the Quantico Creek; a watershed which scientists use as the water quality benchmark in Prince William County. Join Larry Heath and Professor Meyering of Virginia Community College, Woodbridge campus to learn more about water quality for more awareness. RVSP to  Larry for more information and directions.  

Powells Creek Stream Monitoring Session
When : Saturday, October 5, 10:00am-12:30pm
Where : Montclair VA
Parking location : Along 15601 Northgate Dr. Montclair, VA 22025
Join Buck Arvin and the Merrimac Master Naturalist Team in monitoring the Powell’s Creek in the Montclair area. Residents are welcome to come support the data collection of this stream and learn more about the water quality in their local stream.
For directions and more information RSVP to Buck Arvin .

Airport Creek Stream Monitoring Session
When : Sunday, October 6, 11:00am-1:30pm
Where : Woodbridge VA
Parking Location:  parking is just past Mojave Lane on Springwoods Drive (look for the Water Quality Event sign). Join Janis Cook at this adopted site in the Lake Ridge area for water quality monitoring experience. For more information and RSVP, please contact  Janis Cook.

Holmes Run Stream Monitoring Workshop
When : Saturday, October 19, 9:00-11:30am
Where : Roundtree Park, Falls Church VA
Join NVSWCD as we discover aquatic life in Holmes Run! This official NVSWCD stream monitoring workshop covers watershed health, what macroinvertebrates tell us about stream quality, and what you can do to prevent pollution in your local stream. This workshop will also help to prepare you to become a certified stream monitor. Registration is limited. Send questions to Ashley Palmer and RSVP here .

Reston Association Stream Monitoring Workshop
When : Saturday, October 19, 1:30-4:30pm
Where : Reston VA
What better way to enjoy the changing seasons than to get your feet wet in one of Reston’s streams? RA welcomes new volunteers to assist with stream monitoring at several locations. Get involved with a small team to collect data and identify insects with the goal of assessing the health of Reston’s streams. Not only do you get to learn about streams, it also provides an opportunity to make new friends! Learn more and register .

Horsepen Run Stream Monitoring Workshop
When : Sunday, November 3, 10:00am-12:30pm
Where : Horsepen Run Stream Valley Park, Herndon VA
Join NVSWCD as we discover aquatic life in Horsepen Run! This official NVSWCD stream monitoring workshop covers watershed health, what macroinvertebrates tell us about stream quality, and what you can do to prevent pollution in your local stream. This workshop will also help to prepare you to become a certified stream monitor. Registration is limited. Send questions to Ashley Palmer and RSVP here .

Reston Association Stream Monitoring Workshop
When : Saturday, November 16, 11:00am-2:00pm
Where : Reston VA
What better way to enjoy the changing seasons than to get your feet wet in one of Reston’s streams? RA welcomes new volunteers to assist with stream monitoring at several locations. Get involved with a small team to collect data and identify insects with the goal of assessing the health of Reston’s streams. Not only do you get to learn about streams, it also provides an opportunity to make new friends! Learn more and register .
Fall Stream Cleanup Events
Join Stream Cleanups throughout September and October with Clean Virginia Waterways! Check out the website for local cleanups!
Join Stream Cleanups this fall with the Alice Ferguson Foundation Trash Free Potomac! Check out the website for local cleanups!
Potomac River Cleanup at Jones Point Park
When: Saturday, September 7, 9:00am-12:00pm
Where: Jones Point Park, Alexandria VA
Get your Hands Dirty for Clean Water! Our river clean-ups will kick off again in early September (which is not so far away!). We'll be collecting trash, beautifying our community, and fighting for clean water on a beautiful summer day. Potomac Conservancy will provide trash grabbers, gloves, bags, and all other materials for a successful cleanup.  Register today for this free, family-friendly event!

Accotink Creek Watershed Stream Cleanups
When : Weekends, September 7 - October 12
Where : Locations along Accotink Creek
Join Friends of Accotink Creek to get trash out of our waterways! Sign up for any of the clean up dates and learn more about the cleanups here .

Accotink Creek Stream Cleanup
When : Saturday, October 5, 9:00-11:00am
Where : Fairfax VA
Join Friends of Accotink Creek (FOAC) and Faith Alliance for Climate Solutions (FACS) in making Accotink Creek a cleaner and healthier place for fish, frogs, and people. Register here and contact Jackie with FACS for more information.

Friends of the Occoquan Stream Cleanup
When : Saturday, October 5, 9:00am-12:00pm
Where : Several sites near Occoquan VA
Join the Friends of the Occoquan for their annual cleanup along the river! Cleanup the banks or - if you have a canoe or kayak - head into the water to get floating trash. Refreshments will be provided to all volunteers. A list of sites can be found here . You can make a difference! Help preserve one of our region’s most important natural resources: The Occoquan River! The trash problem is a serious one and we need your help! Rain or Shine! Refreshments will be provided. Please contact FOTO at 703-624-7124 if you can help us out! **Bring refillable water bottles for water drinking purposes.

Reston Association Stream Cleanup
When: Saturday, October 19, 10:00am-12:00pm
Where: Reston VA
There are three potential worksites. RA will be hosting cleanups at Hunters Woods Village Center, Soapstone Drive and the Southgate Community Center. Help keep Reston looking beautiful by joining RA for the Fall Stream Cleanup! By simply clearing out litter from our watersheds, your contributions will have a significant impact on restoring Reston’s streams. Learn more and register here .
NVSWCD Events
2019 Conservation Poster Contest
Deadline: October 4, 2019
The Youth Poster Contest is a national competition. Students submit entries to their local Conservation District. Winning entries can be sent to state and even national competitions for judging and awards. The contest is open to the public, private or home school students, girl scout/boy scout troops, etc. Please note that both Girl and Boy Scouts that participate in the contest and submit valid entries at any level are eligible to receive the VASWCD Conservation Poster Patch. Entries must be submitted to the Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District by October 4, 2019. Learn more and enter .
2019 Youth Conservation Leadership Institute Now Accepting Applications!
Deadline: October 4, 2019

YCLI offers high school students interested in environmental conservation and stewardship an opportunity to build leadership skills and connect with local mentors involved with environmental issues. Students choose projects that they are interested in to carryout in their community. 
 
As a participant in the Youth Conservation Leadership Institute, students will be required to complete a minimum of 20 hours of community service with a focus in the natural resources conservation field. Students are encouraged to focus work with the local Soil & Water Conservation District but any work that contributes to pollution prevention, natural resources conservation, and promotion of environmental literacy will be accepted. All projects must have a confirmed mentor which may be a local SWCD, government agency, community leader, or similar local organization.
 
YCLI is open to any Virginia high school (9 th -12 th grade)student committed to the entirety of the program including:
  • Completion of at least 20 community service hours to be approved by the VASWCD staff.
  • Submission of one interim and final report/presentation on the community work completed.
  • Attendance at the final recognition program to be held in Spring of 2020.
  • Read an assigned book on environmental leadership for a group discussion.

Learn more about the program here and send completed applications to Bonnie Mahl by October 4, 2019.
Community Events
Edible Landscaping Plants with Fairfax Food Council
When: Tuesday, September 10, 6:30-8:00pm
Where: Daniels Run Peace Church, Fairfax VA
Are you trying to figure out how to grow food without upsetting your HOA or subtracting from the beauty of your existing landscaping? Do you want a garden that delights all five of your senses? Permaculture farmer, Cory Suter, will lead a tour of Daniels Run’s edible landscaping and then discuss selecting edible perennials for challenging conditions such as shade, clay soil, and hungry deer. He will introduce dozens of successful edible landscaping plants for Fairfax County, including beautiful evergreens, and deciduous plants with multi-season interest that produce food.
Hosted by the Virginia Cooperative Extension and Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth. Registration is required. Learn more and register here .

Singing Insects
When : Wednesday, September 11, 6:30pm
Where : Visitor Center, Huntley Meadows Park, Alexandria VA
Join Friends of Dyke Marsh in a presentation that will explore the world of singing insects using nature images and sound recordings. You’ll learn where to find these insects, how to identify them by looks and songs, how and why they sing, and how you hear their songs. Their speaker will be Wil Hershberger, an avid naturalist, nature photographer, nature sound recordist, and co-author of the book “The Songs of Insects.” The talk will be followed by a walk, beginning at 8 pm, to listen for singing insects. The number of people on the walk is limited to 20, so if you want to go on the walk please register in advance by sending an email to FODM .

Rain Gardens for Homeowners Workshop
When : Saturday, September 21, 10:00am-12:00pm
Where : Sully Government Center, Chantilly VA
Come to this FREE workshop to learn about designing and planting a rain garden at your home! Rain gardens, also known as bioretention areas, are attractive landscape features that allow rain water and snow melt to infiltrate into the ground. A layer of mulch and plants intercept water running off streets, driveways, and rooftops, slowing its flow and removing pollutants before the water reaches local streams, the Occoquan River and the Potomac River, which are drinking water supplies for the region. Speakers include specialists from NVSWCD. Registration is limited, learn more and register here .

NatureFest
When : Sunday, September 29, 1:00-5:00pm
Where : Runnymede Park, Herndon VA
Free, family-friendly event with exhibits and hands-on activities throughout the park. Live animals, games, and lots of fun! Come and see NVSWCD's "Life in the Stream" Station! For more information, click here .

HOAs and Condo Associations: Sustainable solutions to landscaping headaches
When : Friday, October 4 or Saturday, November 2, 9:30 am – 1 pm.
Where : Northern Virginia Community College, Annandale Campus, Annandale VA
(Choose one date to attend. The content will be identical.)
Are you involved in planning the landscaping for your HOA or Condo Association? Board members, landscape committees, property managers, and landscape maintenance companies are particularly encouraged to attend, but everyone is welcome. See details and sign up here .

Check out Fall Native Plant Sales!
How you can help #SaveCleanWater

For nearly 50 years, EPA has overseen the Clean Water Act, one of the strongest environmental protection laws ever passed. But now EPA wants to weaken the Clean Water Act so that many of the waterways in our communities would no longer be protected. They think that the smallest streams – the ones that carry water out of our neighborhoods after a heavy rainfall – just aren’t important.


It’s easy: Just find a small stream near you – one that doesn’t flow all year round – and send us a picture of it . We’ll use the photos to build a visual library of the streams you love. When EPA sees that, they’ll get the message: Americans won’t stand for this attack on clean water.

-Samantha Briggs
Clean Water Program Director
Izaak Walton League of America
by Valerie Bertha
Fairfax Master Naturalists
by Edamarie Mattei, Owner of Backyard Bounty
Potomac Conservancy
A great resource for gardeners and an interesting listen!