Friendsof the Wissahickon

May 8, 2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:Erin Mooney, Publicist, Friends of the Wissahickon

267-788-2196; mooney@fow.org

Gina Craigo, Special Events Manager, Wissahickon Valley Watershed Association

215-646-8866; gina@wvwa.org

Creek in Crisis Meeting on May 13 to Address Problems in the Wissahickon Watershed

Regional experts convene to set vision for protecting and preserving the watershed.

Philadelphia, PA—A panel of regional experts will address the many issues relating to the Wissahickon watershed on May 13 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m, and will offer tangible ways for community members to engage in protecting the 64-square mile area.

Hosted by Friends of the Wissahickon and the Wissahickon Valley Watershed Association, the meeting, “A Creek in Crisis: Time for Action,” will be held at the Arts Center Theater at Germantown Academy in Fort Washington and is open to the public. At 5:30 p.m., light refreshments will be served. Local organizations and businesses will also be exhibiting before the meeting.

This is a follow up to a 2012 town hall meeting which began a regional conversation about the current conditions in the Wissahickon Creek with respect to flooding, water chemistry and biology and the relationships between land use and watershed health.

The panel will include Mike Helbing, a staff attorney with PennFuture; Jeffrey Featherstone, director of the Center for Sustainable Communities and professor in the Department of Community and Regional Planning (CRP) at Temple University; Chris Crockett, deputy commissioner of planning and environmental services at the Philadelphia Water Department. The program will be moderated by Patrick Starr, executive vice president of Pennsylvania Environmental Council.

“By bringing citizens together to learn more about the Wissahickon and its importance to the region, we hope to raise awareness about the creek as a valuable resource,” said Maura McCarthy, executive director of Friends of the Wissahickon.

”When you educate municipalities and citizens alike on the issues facing the water quality of the Wissahickon Creek and get everyone on the same page, all of our collective actions can make a positive impact and move the needle on improving water quality,” said Dennis Miranda, executive director of the Wissahickon Valley Watershed Association.

To register to attend the session, go to www.fow.org/creekincrisis

The Wissahickon Creek has a humble beginning in the parking lot of the Montgomery Mall, but it is a significant waterway providing approximately 10 percent of Philadelphia’s drinking water as well as recreation, beauty for area residents and habitat for local wildlife. The creek continues through nine municipalities to the confluence of the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia. Over 130 species of birds can be found in the watershed, as well as 15 mammal species and 574 species of native plants.

Founded in 1924, Friends of the Wissahickon is a 1,600-member nonprofit organization and works in partnership with Philadelphia Parks and Recreation to restore historical park structures, eliminate invasive plant species, monitor watershed management issues, and restore trails throughout the Wissahickon Park. Follow FOW on Facebook and Twitter. For more information or to become a member, visit www.fow.org.

Since 1957, WVWA has made a critical difference protecting the local environment in the 64- square miles of the Wissahickon Creek’s watershed, working with individuals, local municipalities, Montgomery County and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. WVWA protects over 1,200 acres of natural open space in Montgomery County. For more information or to become a member please contact 215-646-8866, visit www.wvwa.org or follow WVWA on Facebook.

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