Westport River Watershed Alliance
River News - April, 2015
Please Renew Your Membership
Deborah Weaver, Executive Director 


Now is the time to "invest in WRWA" by renewing your membership. Please consider becoming a sustaining member, which means you auto deduct each month from your credit card. This helps us by providing a more predictable income stream. Your membership is so important to our being able to oversee water quality, advocate for sound remedies for pollution problems, and provide high quality educational programs.


To renew your membership online click this link:



None of this can happen without you. Now more than ever your membership is essential for WRWA to continue its important work. We need your help, your courage and your most generous possible membership with WRWA to move us into this next era.  


Welcome Steve Connors
Deborah Weaver, Gay Gillespie, Steve Connors, Shelli Costa, Betsy White, Roberta Carvalho, Missing from photo - Dachelle London
We are beyond happy to announce that Steve Connors has joined our staff as Community Engagement Manager as of April 1, 2015.


From WRWA President Tom Schmitt:  

"We're delighted to bring Steve on board. He brings a deep knowledge of the community, a commitment to preserving the environment and a wonderful track record of working with volunteers and staff."


From WRWA Executive Director, Deborah Weaver:  

"This is a great day for the entire WRWA family. Steve is perfectly suited to help WRWA reinvigorate community activities such as walks, lectures, rambling river rides and music by the water. He will be working on volunteer recruitment and training, grant research, and all community wide events.  We are excited to offer many more free public activities and Steve will be a friendly face at all of them! We couldn't be more pleased to bring him into our organization".

Volunteers and Vendors Wanted for River Day Fun 

Who: Westport River Watershed Alliance (WRWA)

What: River Day 2015 - This year's theme is "River Habitats"

When: Saturday, June 6, 2015 from 10 AM to 3 PM

Where: Head of Westport Landing (kids activities, education, exhibitors, vendors, music, food, fun) Hix Bridge Landing for the "River Paddle" Kick-off

  • Please join us as an Exhibitor/Vendor, again or for the first time!
  • Volunteers needed to help with games and activities.
  • Questions? Contact: Dale Weber ([email protected])

River Day is publicized in regular press releases, on posters designed by school children and distributed throughout the watershed. Our Business sponsors are listed on the poster and on tee shirts specifically designed for the event

Check out our website for more information about WRWA. http://westportwatershed.org/news-events/river-day/

Beach Walk with WCLT


Join us on Sat April 11 for a dune walk at Cherry Webb Beach.   
Meet in the town parking area at 10:45 am for a brief orientation.  
Led by Ryan Mann, WCLT and Deborah Weaver, WRWA this free event is open to the public to enjoy the beauty of the dunes in the back of the beach. There will be opportunities for photos and views at the high and low points on the walk.

Please register to hold your place with WRWA @508-636-3016 by April 8th.  
Please wear sturdy shoes and bring water and binoculars if you choose. This is a vigorous up and down sandy walk, strollers, etc. are not appropriate. The walk will last approximately  one and a half to two hours and returns on the beach to the town parking area. Parking will be available for those without beach permits. 
Brown Bag Lunch with Everett Castro on the SE MASS Bioreserve  


Thursday, April 23 at Noon
FREE - Bring your own lunch - RSVP to save your spot:
[email protected] or 508-636-3016

WRWA is hosting a brown bag lunch with Everett Castro, the director of Green Futures. Green Futures is a non-profit educational and advocacy organization in Fall River, made up of women and men who share a common concern for the protection of their environment, as well as the economic viability of the communities in which they live.


Everett will speak about the Bioreserve which is located at the top of the Westport River watershed. As you know, the streams that all finally merge and make up the East Branch  ...Shingle Island River, Copicut River and Bread and Cheese Brook ...all begin in or adjacent to the Bioreserve.  It is important that people, especially those who love the Westport River,  realize the importance of this large area of public open space land intended to preserve the functionality of a large-scale ecosystem and promote biodiversity, water supply protection, conservation and scientific, educational and outdoor recreational opportunities.  
WRWA Pub Nights  


Meet Westport River Watershed Alliance at Pub nights!
Thursday April 30 and Thursday May 26 from 4-6pm at the Westporter, 1031 Main Road, Central Village.

Come and join us to meet the new staff at the WRWA-
Executive Director Deborah Weaver, and Community Engagement Manager Steve Connors.

This is a casual chance to learn about the new initiatives of the Alliance and to hear about our ongoing programs in Science, Advocacy and Education. Cash Bar and snacks available.
Beach Clean Up to Celebrate Earth Day


Saturday, May 2, 2015
10 am to Noon
Cherry and Webb/Town Beach

Get outdoors and help WRWA cleanup our town beach at Cherry and Webb. WRWA will supply bags and trash pickers. All are welcome. 
Volunteer Baywatchers Needed for the Westport River              
Roberta Carvalho, Science Director


Every year we work with the Buzzards Bay Coaltion to test the Westport River's ecological health. This is done with the Baywatchers, who are local residents that love the water and want to do their part to protect it. These "citizen scientists" go out one morning per week in summer to test key aspects of the water's health. Since the program began in 1992, hundreds of local residents have volunteered as Baywatchers, testing the waters of Buzzards Bay.  


Please contact Roberta Carvalho ([email protected]) if you would like to help with testing. Training is May 13 and testing starts at the end of the month


As part of volunteering, Baywatchers must:

  • Commit to monitoring at a designated location one morning per week from May to September. Attend a training to learn how to collect water samples.
  • Follow instructions in the Baywatchers kit to ensure accurate measurements.
  • Be comfortable working on docks, piers, beaches, and boat ramps at the water's edge.

Each week, Baywatchers measure the following parameters:

  • Dissolved oxygen
  • Temperature
  • Salinity
  • Water clarity

All data collection and analysis is conducted in accordance with a Quality Assurance Project Plan approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection. For more information visit the Buzzards Bay Coalition's website:http://www.savebuzzardsbay.org/ProtectBay/CleanWater/SoundScience/Baywatchers  



Are you a Mechanics Cooperative Bank customer? You can help us! We're excited to try for Mechanics Cooperative Bank's new Let's Keep it Local Community Grant Program. They will be donating $25,000 to local non-profit organizations and are asking their customers to decide who gets it!

To Vote:
Visit http://www.mechanics-coop.com/communitygrantprogram.php and following the simple instructions below to vote.
(1.) Fill in your customer contact information
(2.) Select Westport River Watershed Alliance from the list of non-profits
(3.) Click "That's My Vote" at the end of the survey and you're done!


WRWA Annual Report and Annual Meeting Available Online
Link to annual report for 2014: 

Link to annual meeting video:
WRWA Annual Meeting Video 
WRWA Annual Meeting Video


Welcome new 2015 Board of Directors:

Tim Gillespie                         Ward Mooney

Bill Gollner                             Bill Pardee

Tom Jansen                            Emily Vogler

Lynn Merrow


Complete list of Board of Directors on WRWA website:



Annual Volunteer Award Recipient Ron Price.  

Buoys @ the Brewery               
Dachelle London, Office Admistrator


We would like to again extend a huge THANK YOU to all of the artists, volunteers, and attendees that helped make our second annual Buoy Show a success! We hope you enjoyed our night of brewhaha with Buoys @ The Brewery.  Please check out our Storify, which shows all of the fun we had helping get everyone out of their winter blues. Here's the link: https://storify.com/dlondon/buoys-the-brewery   

Sign Up Now for Our Popular Summer Coastal Ecology Program for Kids
Shelli Costa, Education Director
The Westport River Watershed Alliance is offering a fun, hands on summer science program for ages 3-16.  Children discover marine life, create eco-crafts, learn about coastal habitats and enjoy games on the beach in the Coastal Explorers program.  Coastal Explorers runs Monday through Friday, 9 am - 1 pm and is being offered the weeks of July 6th -10th and July20th -24th .  The program is open to children ages 7-9 and is $160 for members and $200 for non-members. 
River Edventures will delve deeper into understanding our environment by learning about food chains and the creatures that make up our watershed ecosystem.  Participants will head out on WRWA's skiff to explore the Westport River.  The River Edventures program is for ages 9-11 and runs Monday through Friday, 9am-1pm and is being offered July 13th -17th  and August 3rd -7th.  The cost for River Edventures is $180 for members and $220 for non-members.
In the Watershed Explorers program, learn about the ecology of the Westport River, visit coastal habitats and spend three days paddling on the Westport River.  The kayaking/paddle boarding portion of the program is led by certified instructors from Osprey Sea Kayak Adventures, and includes all equipment and instruction.  Watershed Explorers runs Monday through Thursday, 9 am - 2 pm and 9 am - 3 pm on Friday.  The program is being offered during the week of July 27th-31st .  Watershed Explorers is open to children ages 12-16 (age 11 with previous kayaking experience) and is $360 for members and $400 for non-members.
Register online at www.westportwatershed.org/education/summer-programs/ or call 508-636-3016 for more information.
More Scholarship Funds Available for Local Students

The Greater New Bedford Garden Club is accepting applications for the $1,000 Rose L. Murphy Scholarship to be awarded to a student enrolled in a full-time college program in 2015-2016. The applicant must be pursuing a degree in horticulture, landscape architecture, conservation, environmental sciences or related fields. The student must have been a legal Massachusetts resident for at least one year prior to June 1st of their high school graduation.


WRWA has received an application from NBGC. If any of our members or volunteers are interested in applying, please feel free to contact Roberta Carvalho at  or 508-636-3016. Applications and required paperwork must be received by NBGC no later than May 1, 2015!

Fun Evening for a Good Cause

The Westport Community Foundation is holding their annual "A Night At The Races" fundraiser on Friday May 8th at Whites of Westport. This is a Kentucky-style video simulated derby race, along with silent auction and raffle.  


For more information go to: [email protected] or call/text 508 951 3127. Proceeds from "A Night at the Races" will fund programs & grants for Westport teachers and students. 

Many Thanks to Our Corporate Supporters



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