Friends of the Wissahickon (FOW) is holding two work events in celebration of National Trails Day on Sat., June 3. Interested volunteers can choose to lend extra hands and muscle at either the legendary Devil’s Pool, the most trafficked area in the Wissahickon Valley Park, or the Yellow Trail, a semi-technical trail that’s a favorite among bikers.
Devil’s Pool Cleanup
10 am – 12 pm
Join FOW as they partner with United by Blue (UBB), REI Conshohocken, REI King of Prussia and the City of Philadelphia for the first Devils Pool cleanup of the summer 2017 season. UBB has partnered with more than 10 REI stores in the northeastern U.S. for a two-week cleanup road trip. They are kicking-off their “trash-trek” at Devil’s Pool and Wissahickon Creek, which runs through the beautiful Wissahickon Valley Park before emptying into the Schuylkill River. All volunteers will receive an exclusive Cleanup Crew trucker hat! Sign-up at https://unitedbyblue.com/blogs/cleanups/wissahickon-creek-cleanup-1.
Trail Work Day
9 am – 1 pm
Each year FOW celebrates National Trails Day with a trail work workday. The Wissahickon’s 50 miles of natural surface trail feel the effect of more than 1.1 million user visits a year, in addition to the impact of increased storm water flows due to the urban landscape that surrounds the park. This all adds up to a lot of impact on a delicate piece of infrastructure. To keep the trails functioning, as well as keep excess soil out of our waterways, the trails require regular maintenance. This includes clearing drains, narrowing user-widened trails, and maintaining proper out slope. For more information or to volunteer, contact volunteer coordinator Christina Anthony at email@example.com or 215-247-0417, ext.351.
Through National Trails Day, the American Hiker Society aims to connect more people to trails. Wissahickon Valley Park boasts a lot of them – more than 50 miles – enjoyed daily by runners, bikers, hikers, and horseback riders. To keep these trails safe, FOW volunteers repair and rebuild damaged or unsustainable trails, remove tree debris, pick up trash, and perform other maintenance throughout the park, while Trail Ambassadors provide everything from education to first aid.
“We’re always looking for more hands to help us take care of our park, and work days like National Trails Day are a great way to show your support,” said Maura McCarthy, executive director of FOW.
About Friends of the Wissahickon
Founded in 1924, Friends of the Wissahickon (FOW) is the oldest and largest nonprofit volunteer organization working in partnership with Philadelphia Parks and Recreation to preserve and restore historical park structures and trails, eliminate invasive plant species, and monitor watershed management issues throughout the 1,800-acre Wissahickon Valley Park. With more than one million visits annually, this northern stretch of Fairmount Park was declared what is now known as a National Natural Landmark in 1964. Follow FOW on Facebook and Twitter. For more information or to become a member, visit www.fow.org.
PHOTO ATTACHED: Devils Pool clean-up 2015. Photo by Chuck Uniatowski, courtesy of Friends of the Wissahickon.