The PA Organization for Watersheds and Rivers and Department of Conservation and Natural Resources are now accepting nominations from nonprofit organizations for the 2016 Pennsylvania River of the Year.
Nominations are due October 23, then selected nominations will be voted on by the general public beginning in early November.
“These nominations demonstrate how so many waterways groups and individual supporters know and respect the many unique natural resources and recreational opportunities our wealth of stream and rivers represent,” said DCNR Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn. “They demonstrate just how willing Pennsylvanians are to support, protect and enhance them.”
“Once again, Pennsylvanians get the chance to push for their favorite waterway in friendly competition with others across the Commonwealth. With over 83,000 miles of rivers and stream in the state from which to choose, it is always fun to see folks come forward and advocate for their selection,” said Davitt Woodwell, PA Environmental Council President.
POWR administers the River of the Year program for DCNR to elevate public awareness of specific rivers and recognize important conservation needs and achievements. River of the Year designations have been presented annually since 1983.
Pennsylvania’s 2015 River of the Year was the Conewango Creek in northwest Pennsylvania.
After a waterway is chosen, local groups implement a year-round slate of activities and events to celebrate the river, including a paddling trip, or sojourn. The nominating organization of the winning river will receive a $10,000 leadership grant to help fund their River of the Year activities.
The River of the Year sojourn is just one of many paddling trips supported by DCNR and POWR each year.
An independent program, the Pennsylvania Sojourn Program, is a unique series of a dozen such trips on the state’s rivers. These water-based journeys for canoeists, kayakers and others raise awareness of the environmental, recreational, tourism and heritage values of rivers.
All Pennsylvania Rivers are eligible for nomination, with the exception of winning rivers since 2011.For more information or to nominate a river, visit POWR’s Pennsylvania River of the Year webpage.