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Volume 8, Issue 2 | May/June/july 2018


Connecting people to the river

R-eddy for Summer Inside: - Ride the River - UMRC Preview - 2018 Eddy Awards - Explore the River Series - And much more...

Non Profit Org. US Postage PAID Montezuma, IA Permit No. 30


What is your CRS?


terms of an acronym. It refers to Community Rating System which recognizes and encourages

community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum

May/June/July 2018 _______

t is something you’ve thought about hundreds of times, but never in

Volume 8 Issue 2

KATHY WINE, Publisher / Executive Director BETH CLARK, Managing Editor, Milepost Ventures, LLC. JEFF VanECHAUTE/pi design, inc., Design APRIL KLECKNER, Calendar Editor Contributing Writers LAURA MORRIS, River Action Staff NOAH TRUESDELL, River Action Staff KATHY WINE, River Action Staff CAROL DOWNEY, River Action Staff Contributing Photographers RIVER ACTION STAFF BRIAN TUGANA STOCK: Printing Services SUTHERLAND PRINTING © eddy Magazine and River Action, Inc., all rights reserved, 2018. Reproduction in any form, in whole or in part, without express, written permission, is prohibited. The views expressed herein, whether expressed as fact, fiction, opinion, advice or otherwise are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the ownership or management of this magazine. This magazine is sold with the understanding that neither it, nor River Action, Inc., its owners or managers, are engaged in rendering legal, accounting, tax, medical, technical, or any other advice, professional or otherwise. The publication of any advertisement does not reflect the endorsement of any products or services by the ownership or management of this magazine unless it is specifically stated in such advertisement and there is written approval for such endorsement. Those submitting manuscripts, photographs, artwork or other material to eddy Magazine for consideration should not send originals. Unsolicited manuscripts, photographs and other submitted materials must be accompanied by a self addressed, postage paid envelope in return of materials is requested. Return of materials is not guaranteed. eddy Magazine is published quarterly by River Action, Inc., 822 E. River Drive, Davenport, IA 52803 and is direct mailed to approximately 6,000 area homes and businesses. eddy Magazine Published by River Action, Inc. 822 E. River Drive, Davenport, IA 52803 563-322-2969

National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) standards. Depending upon the level of participation, flood insurance premium rates for policy holders can be reduced up to 45 percent and this would include homeowners, businesses, and cities. The NFIP Community Rating System is a voluntary incentive program that recognizes and encourages community floodplain management activities that exceed the minimum NFIP requirements. As a result, flood insurance premium rates are discounted to reflect the reduced flood risk resulting from the community actions meeting the three goals of the CRS: 1. Reduce flood damage to insurable property; 2. Strengthen and support the insurance aspects of the NFIP, and 3. Encourage a comprehensive approach to floodplain management. (More information is available at In the Quad Cities, three are enrolled: Davenport (8), Moline (8), and Rock Island County (7). The rating system assigns the lowest numbers to the best practices, the highest numbers to the poorest. Since public information builds a knowledgeable public interested in improving flood mitigation measures, River Action will bring experts on flooding to the 2018 Upper Mississippi River Conference, October 24-25. A special workshop for citizens, cities and counties will introduce the Quad Cities Flood Resiliency Alliance. The director of the successful alliance in LaSalle County, Illinois, Mike Sutfin, will address the conference in a plenary session and then develop a how-to guide for the Quad Cities on organizing and improving floodplain ordinances and awareness during a workshop on October 25. Floods cause disasters, but they can also be beneficial. I often talk about how floods are actually good for the river. Though floods can be devastating to communities , they have always been an integral part of nature's renewal process, providing many long-term positive benefits. They include the renewal of wetlands; healthy wetlands promote healthy water supplies and even improve air quality. In addition, flooding adds nutrients to lakes and streams


that help support healthy fisheries. Floods also return

nutrients to topsoil and make agricultural lands

more fertile and prevent erosion and help maintain

elevations. The rapidly receding land of the Mississippi River Delta is a direct result of man-made flood

controls and levees that prevent topsoil-replenishing

To Advertise: Contact Beth Clark 309-269-3455 or contact Deb Girard at For rates, ad dimensions and deadline information email

sediments from being deposited in the delta.

To Subscribe or become a member of River Action: call 563-322-2969 or visit

ground and percolate down through soil and rock to

Finally, floods recharge and replenish groundwater. Flood waters are absorbed into the recharge aquifers, which supply natural springs, wells, rivers and lakes with fresh water. These and programs

Our Mission: River Action strives to foster the environmental, economic, and cultural vitality of the Mississippi River and its riverfront in the Quad City region.

Kathy Wine

such as the Alliance are reasons for optimism; I see a future full of possibility.

4 Get R-Eddy for These Events! 4 4 4 5

Ride the River by Noah Truesdell Floatzilla 2018! by Noah Truesdell Taming of the Slough by Noah Truesdell Upper Mississippi River Conference by Carol Downey

6 2018 Eddy Awards by River Action Staff


Explore the River Series by Laura Morris

12 eddy Calendar:

May, June, July by April Kleckner

Cover photo: Heidi Brandt

May/June/July 2018 | eddy Magazine



Ride the River: Island Adventure — by Noah Truesdell


(Photo credit: Phil Cunningham)

Floatzilla: Bringing Teens to the River

— by Noah Truesdell


loatzilla is entering its 9th year of the biggest and best paddling event on the Mississippi. On August 18, paddlers will launch from five locations across the Quad Cities to enjoy a Mississippi River free of barge traffic. We have new launch locations at Leach Park in Bettendorf and the Two Rivers YMCA Rowing Center in downtown Moline. Paddlers launching at Empire Park in East Moline and Leach Park must lock through at Lock and Dam 15, while paddlers launching from the rowing center will portage over Sylvan Island. The construction of the I-74 Bridge limits those launching from upriver to the main channel on their way to Lake Potter. We will have live music and a selection of our popular local food trucks for our paddlers before we attempt the world record for largest flotilla of kayaks and canoes, and largest simultaneous launch. This year River Action is partnering with Beyond the Baseline and the Davenport and Rock Island Police Departments to launch “Cops, Kids, Kayaks, and Canoes.” We will be inviting at-risk youth from around the Quad Cities to learn how to paddle at a class this summer and give them their very own lifejacket. The kids will then buddy up with one of our local police officers to take part in Floatzilla. We hope our program will help to forge relationships between our kids and authority figures, teach them a new skill, and inspire an appreciation for the outdoors. Plan to stick around after picking up your packet at Credit Island on August 17. We will have an outdoor/athletic equipment swap meet, music, food, and some friendly competitions happening at the lodge. Sign up today at

Taming of the Slough: Back in Moline — by Noah Truesdell


ith the reopening of Sylvan Island in December, Taming of the Slough will be returning to downtown Moline for the first time in five years! Our race will start with a 2.5 mile paddle course in the Sylvan Island Slough, followed by a five mile mountain bike course on Sylvan Island, and finishing with a 2 mile run through downtown Moline (featuring the return of the infamous hill in Velie Park). Tune-Ups for Taming will be held on Thursday evenings at the Two Rivers YMCA Rowing Center in Moline. We will have route maps for racers to practice the course in the weeks leading up to the event. At the nearby Bass Street Landing on Thursday nights this summer you can check out live music and food specials at Bass Street Chop House after your training. We are partnering with the Timber City Adventure Race and the Annawan Canal Ambush again this year to bring you the 3x3 Adventure Series. You can sign up for all three races at a discounted rate to get all the paddling, biking, and running you can handle throughout the summer, and compete for the 3x3 Adventure Cup! After Taming of the Slough we will have a party at Bass Street Landing


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oin us on Father’s Day, June 17, as we embark on an adventure to explore islands of the Mississippi River Helmets are required for everyone under 18 during this year’s on Ride the River. Helmets will be available Ride the River. for $10 each at our headquarters in LeClaire Collect stickers at Park courtesy of the Quad City Bicycle Club. (Photo Credit: River Action Archives) each of our four islands to get a free slice of pizza when you return to LeClaire Park. At the Campbell’s Island stop we will be roasting marshmallows and making 'smores at River Action’s art project/fire pit on the island. The Daughters of the American Revolution will also be a presenting a play about the Battle of Campbell’s Island. Arsenal Island has been reopened to us this year. We will be writing letters to active military and veterans at Memorial Park with food available from the Arsenal Grill. The newly reopened Sylvan Island will be a hot spot this year with Friends of Off-Road Cycling (FORC) hosting their Mountain Biking 101 class for our participants, and Meatheads Meat Market food truck near the bridge. Families can also stop by Schwiebert Park to watch or take part in the short play “The Adventures of Huckleberry Schwinn,” by our very own Chuck Oestreich. You can also head down to Credit Island and get handson by helping River Action build osprey boxes that will be put up around the Quad Cities to encourage the birds to start nesting in the area. Return to LeClaire Park to participate in our Survivor-themed games that will be fun for the whole family to participate and compete in. Collect four out of five stickers (one for each island and one for completing our games circuit) to earn your free slice of pizza from Streets of Italy. We will only be having one crossing on the Celebration Belle this year so sign up early before the boat fills up! Find out more and sign up at

where we’ll award our winners and have pizza and beer from Bent River Brewing Co. We are excited to be moving back to Moline this year. Come check out the most unique and fun race in the Quad Cities on September 15. Sign up at

Racers may compete as individuals, or in two-or three-person teams. Partner up with coworkers to take part in our Corporate Challenge! (Photo Credit: River Action Archives)


Upper Mississippi River Conference: A Preview

— by Carol Downey


lanning is well under way for the 2018 Upper Mississippi River Conference. The 11th annual event will be held Oct. 2425, 2018 at Stoney Creek Hotel & Conference Center in Moline, Ill. The theme for this year’s conference is “Our Watershed – Working Together for Healthy Waters and Flood-Resilient Communities.” Featured plenary speakers are Dr. Gerry Galloway, University of Maryland, Chad Berginnis, Executive Director, Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM), Mike Sutfin, Building & Zoning Official for the City of Ottawa, Ill. and Mary Miss, artist, City as a Living Laboratory, working to educate through environmental art. Speakers in concurrent tracks will focus on floodplains/flood risk management and water quality/biodiversity. Presentations will cover progress and changes made in flood damage mitigation strategies since the great Mississippi flood of 1993; how to define good floodplain management and related policies; the consequences of poor floodplain management;

floodplain restoration; flood mitigation; strategies to reduce flood insurance costs; use of floodplains for nutrient removal. Attendees also will have an opportunity to tour successful field projects including watershed management practices, nutrient removal practices, and permeable streets for storm water control. The conference will culminate with a community workshop for establishing a Quad Cities Flood Resiliency Alliance modeled after the highly successful Illinois Valley Flood Resiliency Alliance in central Illinois. Local residents, elected officials and other Mississippi River stakeholders will be

Mike Sutfin, Building & Zoning Official, Ottawa, Illinois - Illinois Valley Flood Resiliency Alliance

Dr. Gerry Galloway, University of Maryland

invited to collaborate with a goal to reduce flood risk, flood damage and drive down flood insurance costs for residents, businesses and local governments.

Chad Berginnis, Executive Director for the Association of State Floodplain Managers (ASFPM)

Mary Miss, artist, City as a Living Laboratory

May/June/July 2018 | eddy Magazine




EDDY Awards — by River Action Staff

Art: Quad City Symphony

In order to appreciate the 2016-17 Joined by a River season of the Quad City Symphony, we have to understand what regularly goes into making a season. Brian Baxter, Executive Director, says, “Years. We don’t just pick the pieces, create the concerts, and thus the season.” He and Mark Russell Smith, Music Director and Conductor, work with a Program Advisory Committee to strategize connecting the season to the public. It is an evolution that starts with a vision, leads to strategy, and then to the artists. They ask “Do we have to write music?” and “Will this be a compelling product?” We hear often from composers the inspiration for their music, but seldom from symphony executives or conductors. In the case of the 2016-17 season, they were inspired by the Mississippi River which binds and defines us. More accurately, they programmed river-related works from around the world and researched many important musical cities, important composers and pieces which reflect living by a river. Because a river runs through lots of music, they celebrated the Thames, Danube, Rhine, Old and Lost Rivers, and commissioned a new work “Global Warming” for this special year. The Riverfront Pops gave River Action members and participants in Floatzilla a discount on tickets. The Quad City Symphony is doing its thing—melding tradition and innovation, acknowledging and upending expectation, but always insisting that excellence is the core of making music.

Design: The City of Dubuque

The City of Dubuque uncovered a creek that now bursts with life! The ‘daylighting’ of Bee Creek was a $218 million project, a watershed initiative leveraged with special interest, state, and federal grants; it turned a flood mitigation measure into a storm water success story. Today it inspires a new approach to storm water reuse by taking runoff previously diverted into pipes and dumping straight into the stream and rerouting it first to wetlands reducing erosion and pollutant loads. This exemplary project took urban runoff and put it back into a parkway that was being starved of its natural watershed. The streambank now serves an amphitheater, trail head holds 500 trees and 1,600 square feet of floating wetlands, resulting in 15 species of fish and 45 species of birds. Unearthing the creek required the removal of 265,000 cubic feet of soil and the acquisition of eight properties. Two streets pass through the area requiring bridges to be built over the creek. There is now a half mile of multi-use path featuring two scenic overlooks. The uniform use of limestone in the creek bed and structures maintains a natural feel in the middle of the city. The Eddy Jury applauds the city on increasing the area’s capacity for storm water tenfold and influencing design of green infrastructure throughout the Midwest.

Revitalization: Annisa Wanat

Annisa Wanat of Global Communities, an international nonprofit partnering with the John Deere Foundation, was tasked three years ago with revitalizing the Floreciente neighborhood, a diverse community rich in heritage and tradition, but long in challenges. It lost a neighborhood school that also served as a bilingual community center. The three-year partnership envisioned a rebirth that would inspire meaningful, lasting change that will help people out of poverty and revive the area. Work included a mail box initiative when they learned as many as 70 residents did not have one, forming a neighborhood association, and community meetings where Annisa has promoted citizenship and public service. Leadership is about encouraging people. It’s about stimulating them to achieve what they can achieve and to do that with a purpose. She is creating an annual celebration, facade improvements on buildings, flowers, planting, and selling. Because the area borders on IL 92, it received a Safe Walk to School grant and began working with Moline Public Works to make sidewalk improvements. Residents number 1,300 within 400 households. Annisa concludes, “It’s about empowering communities. We want them to get what they need, envision and desire. We are going to work on housing, healthcare, education, and whatever is needed.” Her enthusiasm makes us a little more bullish on the future, too.


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Revitalization: Maria Ontiveros

She doesn’t just connect with her generation, she leads it, and it’s thrilling to consider how lucky we are to be in her audience anticipating her next project. Maria Ontiveros grew up surrounded with music and culture and family – all things the Mercado on Fifth cares about. She identifies new directions, “thinks big” in other words, then starts doing. Since creating a thriving business district in Floreciente is one of the Global Communities’ goals, Maria’s Mercado on Fifth has become the catalyst. After taking a course in food sanitation, she enrolled nearly a dozen residents in a Blackhawk College class on sanitation that she teaches in Spanish. Out of the class has come three new businesses with several more emerging. Having started with just family, she envisions expanding her board and delving into more strategic planning to include a year-round market, a commercial kitchen, and outdoor movies which this summer will be called “Movies at McCandless”, a park nearby. In the beginning, the city was reluctant to close the street. In 2018, besides the 22 Friday nights of the market, Sunday La Pulga markets will debut. The City has become a vital partner. We would like to know her secret for mobilizing people. When asked, she responds, ‘Speaking people’s language. Diversifying for different sorts of people. In my case, it is very helpful that I speak Spanish.” Almost any conversation with her is like throwing open a window on our stuffy realities and breathing in a breeze of tomorrow’s possibilities! Brava, Maria!

May/June/July 2018 | eddy Magazine




EDDY Awards Stewardship: Robb and Jennifer Ewoldt

When Robb Ewoldt talks about the chips being down, he is talking about bioreactors and taking nutrients from his field while creating clean water. It is a rare breed of farmer who is both a leader in his field, but also a great communicator. Add to that combination a partner, his wife, Dr. Jennifer Ewoldt, a veterinarian who is also an excellent writer and communicator. They make a great team. Advocacy did not come easily to Robb. He heard Bill Stowe of the Des Moines Water Works speak of the damage farmers were inflicting on Des Moines’ drinking water and decided he needed to amplify what farmers are doing right! With facts and figures from the Iowa Soybean Association, he now speaks out often. Being a director of Iowa Soybean Association has given Robb a platform. He wields his influence to improve water quality more quietly by installing edge-of-field best practices, buffer strips, pollinator fields, and cover crops on his 1,000 acres of tillable land. We applaud the Ewoldts’ outstanding contributions toward soil conservation and water quality, but also for going above and beyond those efforts and conducting field trips to their farm. Jennifer, through her QC Times column, ”Rural Route 4,” has a way of making us love farming. The book “Into the Fields” captures the best of those columns all highlighted with stunning photography. It’s hard to say whether they have done more good for the world through their work in farming or in communication, and that’s saying an awful lot about both.

River Activity: Greg Farnham and the late Frank Schere The world overlooked the Rock River for far too long. It is more geographically dynamic than we suspected. And it is Greg Farnham’s tenacity along with Frank Schere’s vision that we have to thank for that knowledge. We would not have the trails, maps, signage, and events without their commitment and persistence. An inaugural paddle from Oregon to Dixon, Illinois, started it all! Working with a small team of enthusiasts and stakeholders, and spending their own money, they trailblazed from Wisconsin to Rock Island. They didn’t wait for excuses; they kept on keeping on. The biggest challenge was working with 11 counties and 41 communities to garner support. Each entity saw it differently, but they all came on board. In 2013, it became a part of the National Park Service National Water Trail. There are six Convention and Visitor Bureaus assisting today with eight elements of the trail system. They include: hiking, horseback riding, air route with nine airports, water trail, road trail, bike trail, historic trail, and a chocolate trail! The current council of 17 pledged to seek public and private investment and have taken action to fulfill that pledge; if they live up to the promise, the states and municipalities may do the same Frank Schere, who died in 2017, was the publisher and editor of the Rock River Times, and used skillfully the power of the pen. He shared is vision with nonprofits, state officials, DOTs, counties, and municipalities. Greg brought his talents as an international marketer, an educator in biology, and lake management. Greg says today, “It was lots of hard work, inventories, knocking on doors, and many late nights. But it is all worth it!”

Special Recognition: Dave Hill Dave was the definition of a role model; someone who maximizes his potential to push the boundaries with passion, purpose, integrity, and the sensitivity to know they are setting an example for others along the way. Dave Hill was this for Boy Scouts. Dave was someone with uncommon courage and compassion. He advocated tirelessly for solutions to problems. For example, he took a lawnmower to Sylvan Island in his canoe with Scouts on board to mow the portage area for Floatzilla during the years when the Sylvan Island bridge was not accessible. Then, he led a float of 20 Scouts in the paddling event. Belief in yourself, hard work, and dedication make it possible to do great things. Sadly for us, Dave Hill was just getting started. He died in a car accident in January, 2018. He is greatly missed.


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Special Recognition: Reggie McLeod – 25th Anniversary of Big River Magazine

Education: Dave Murcia, Wapsi River Environmental Education Center When you first meet Dave Murcia, Director of the Wapsi River Environmental Education Center, Dixon, Iowa, you think he is having way too much fun to be working. He has inspired Quad Citians to get up from their screens and get back to nature. Enthusiastic about creating champions of the environment, he is a source of strength for his staff. We want our teachers to stand up to every challenge; he does, and he sees that his staff does, too. They are accommodating new science standards in schools and continue to showcase their collection of live animals. Despite the Center’s location in north Scott County, it hosts large groups of both students and the general public. During 2016-17, 83 schools from 20-plus districts in Iowa and Illinois visited, but it is a challenge for them to afford busing, and he is addressing that challenge. The preserve boasts 225 acres along a mile of the Wapsipinicon River, and Dave succeeds at incorporating the woodlands and river into programming. A new, popular program is canoe and kayak classes. “Some kids have never held a paddle; it is exciting for them to learn to paddle, ” he observes. He hopes to expand services to West Lake Park, Scott County Park, and Buffalo Shores to engage even larger audiences. ” You can get the attention of future stewards by releasing something into the wild and nurturing it,” he says. “That would be the live raptors at the center, the river trips, and the walks in the woods.” He sees the future in the faces of his students and the possibility of real progress in environmental education.

One way a journalist knows he’s made an impact is when he has people talking. A better way is getting them arguing. By that measure, Reggie McLeod, Editor/Publisher of “Big River Magazine” for 25 years has had a good run. He’s rocked the river world with investigating pollution going into Lake Pepin and, more recently, the frack sand mining in Iowa and Wisconsin. An avid kayaker when not writing, he has been paddling against the current with camera in hand, as in an eddy, to open eyes. Twenty five years ago, he just hoped to be read. Now, we know his ideas have shaped some of the key debates of our time. His is a voice that needs to be heard. Features have included: • Recognizing the New Normal now that we frequently experience major flooding, • Exploring why muskies are missing on the Upper Mississippi River, • Discovering large populations of Blanding’s Turtles in Minnesota, • Researching zebra mussels and carp, • Exploring the river from the headwaters to St. Louis by car, bike, or boat, and • Crusading for clean water. Reggie hasn’t been just a magazine publisher/editor, he’s also been an educator, advocate, cheerleader, and mentor. Few people along the Upper Mississippi have spent more time getting to know so much about the river or illuminating the need to protect it, and we are all the richer for it. However, Reggie asks us to remember, “If people don’t read it, it does no good.”

May/June/July 2018 | eddy Magazine



14th Annual Explore the River Series — By Laura Morris


earn about the Mississippi River firsthand through River Action’s 14th Annual Explore the River Series, which include Channel Cat Talks and Riverine Walks. The series provides Quad Cities’ residents and tourists a chance to experience and learn about the Mississippi River by taking them to unique sites where they can explore wildlife, history, culture, water quality, and more. Each talk utilizes the multiple opportunities afforded by geology, local ecology, and cultural and historical factors distinctive to each place on 30 miles of the river and riverfront in the Quad City region. This year there are 52 presentations in total, covering 26 different topics! River Action’s Explore the River Series runs from May 29 to September 1. We would like to extend a special thanks to our sponsors this year, including Scott County, QC Times, MetroLINK, Mancomm, and Greg and Judy Gackle.


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Participants listen to Dr. Araceli Masterson through their headsets on a Channel Cat Talk. (Photo by River Action)

Channel Cat Talks Channel Cat Talk participants tour the Mississippi River aboard the Channel Cat Water Taxi, while experts narrate. All Channel Cat Talks are from 9:00-10:45 A.M. The Talks begin at the Celebration Pier Channel Cat Landing, 2951 E. River Dr, Moline, Illinois and headsets are provided to all Channel Cat Talk attendees for each session so you can clearly hear the presentations! Channel Cat Talks are $14 per person. Channel Cat Talks include: June 5 and June 7, and August 28 and August 30 – Building a Bridge for the Future: The I-74 Mississippi River Bridge Project, Danielle Mulholland, I-74 Project Manager, Iowa DOT • The I-74 Mississippi River Bridge project is part of a regional strategy to improve the I-74 corridor and access across the Mississippi River in the Quad Cities. Danielle Mulholland, I-74 Project Manager, Iowa Department of Transportation, will discuss the planning and construction process for this important east-west link in

the nation's transportation network. You will learn about the design and building process of the new I-74 Mississippi River Bridge and get the latest updates on construction. June 19 and June 21 – Rafting Logs to the QC Mills, Gayle Rein, Historian • Explore the history of the QC lumber industry while listening to stories about mill owners, lumber camps, and crews. August 7 and August 9 – Operations and Maintenance of the Nation's Waterways, Josh Hendrix, Geotechnical Engineer, USACE, and Anthony Heddlesten, Civil Engineer, USACE • This trip will focus on why the lock and dam system was constructed, how it has been maintained to date, and the ongoing repairs at Lock and Dam 15. You will have the ability to lock through (weather and traffic dependent) and see the ongoing work to upgrade the downstream lock wall.


Ferrel Anderson leads a group on a Riverine Walk. (Photo by River Action)

Riverine Walks Riverine Walk participants explore the Quad Cities through a series of guided walks. Wednesdays from 6:30-8 P.M. and Saturdays 9-10:30 A.M. These guided walks, presented by local professionals, inform residents and visitors about the environment and history of the Quad Cities with an abundance of interactive discussions and activities. Riverine Walks meet at various sites around the Quad City area and are $6 per person or free to River Action members. May 30 and June 2 – Plants and Ecology of the Mississippi River and its Floodplain, Bob Bryant, Native Plant Society • Bob Bryant, retired naturalist and plant enthusiast, will be your guide as you explore Bettendorf's Pigeon Creek Park. Located on the Mississippi River, Pigeon Creek is an interesting park with both natural and cultural history. Meet at: Tank on North side of Credit Island, Davenport, Iowa

July 11 and July 14 – Lost Grove Lake: A Historical and Ecological Perspective, Chad Dolan, Iowa DNR • Learn about the history of the Lost Grove area, the Lost Grove Lake project, and the different values of the lake. Meet at: Old Red Barn Boat Access Area, 24999 230th Ave, Eldridge, Iowa August 15 and August 18 – A Look at Black Hawk State Historic Site Through the Years, Elizabeth Carvey, Historian • Walk back through 400 million years of geologic time. Learn about the Sauk and Meskwaki, the amusement park, the effects of the Steel and Sears dams on the river, current infrastructure improvements, and more! Meet at: Singing Bird Lodge, Black Hawk State Historic Site, Rock Island, Illinois To view the other Channel Cat Talks and Riverine Walks, flip to the back cover or visit and sign up to participate or volunteer!

(Photo contributed by Noah Truesdell)

Dubuque Field Trip

Join us on Wednesday, August 29 as we take a trip to Dubuque, Iowa. On this guided tour, learn about the Bee Branch Watershed Flood Mitigation Project, a $219 million project to “daylight” a creek that addresses the frequent flash floods the area experiences. Participants will also be seeing the permeable alleys and floating islands the City is installing, touring the Port of Dubuque, and exploring the Historic Millwork District. When: August 29 Time: 8 A.M.-2:30 P.M. Cost: $45 (Members) & $50 (Nonmembers) The bus departs from the River Action office, 822 E. River Dr., Davenport, Iowa. The final date to register is August 24 or when filled. This trip has moderate walking, and a box lunch is included. The field trip has limited space, so register soon!

May/June/July 2018 | eddy Magazine




River Action’s Explore the River Series

Memorial Day through Labor Day, Channel Cat Talks – Tuesdays and Thursdays 9-10:45 am, Riverbend Commons, 2951 River Dr. Moline $14; Riverine Walks – Wednesdays 6:30-8 pm and Saturdays 9-10:30 am, locations vary, $6. Join us for River Action’s Explore the River Series. Tour the Mississippi River aboard the Channel Cat Water Taxi while experts narrate. Riverine Walk participants explore the Quad Cities through a series of guided walks.

Backwater Gamblers Water Ski Show

Memorial Day through Labor Day - every Wednesday and Sunday, 6:30 pm, Rock River, 5000 44th St. Rock Island A free water ski show. Donations appreciated.

Celebration River Cruises

Schedule, prices and cruise times vary, 2501 River Dr, Moline, 309-764-1952 Enjoy the Mighty Mississippi River, see the I-74 new bridge construction up close, and take in historical sights of the Quad City Area including the Rock Island Arsenal and Lock and Dam #15.

Riverboat Twilight

May 29 – Oct 23, Schedule, prices and cruise times vary, 197 Front St. Le Claire, 800-331-1467 Elegant, triple-decked riverboat for day, overnight, and sightseeing cruises with dining. Get up close with bald eagles, pelicans, towering bluffs, historic river towns and the ever-changing valley landscapes.

Wapsi River Environmental Education Center: Canoe/Kayak Experience May 2, May 14, June 8, June 13, 1 pm, Location varies Join the Wapsi River Center staff for an adventure


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with canoes and kayaks. Program includes all equipment use, covers safety, techniques, and taking a tour of Pride Lake. You may bring your own vessel/PFD, though it must comply with IADNR regulations. Call 563-328-3286 to register.

Nahant Marsh: Breakfast Nature Club – Ferns of the Quad-City Region Fri, May 4, 8-9 am, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport Learn the secret life of Iowa’s wildlife during this monthly class. A continental breakfast is included. $5 member, $10 guest. Register at or 563-336-3370.

Nahant Marsh: Fruit Tree Grafting Workshop

Sat, May 5, 1-5 pm, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport Tom Wahl of Red Fern Farms will teach techniques for propagating trees on your own. You will take home one apple tree grafted by you! $30 member, $35 guest. Limit of 15. Register at or 563-3363370.

Nahant Marsh: Nature Hike

Sat, May 5, June 2, July 7, 9-10 am, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport Join a naturalist for a guided hike along the trails at the Marsh. Hikes are the first Saturday of the month and give visitors an opportunity to experience the environmental changes as the plants and wildlife adapt to the seasons. Suggested donation $5. Register at or 563-336-3370.

Wapsi River Environmental Education Center: Wild Flower Hike

River Action: Great River Brewery Fundraiser Tues, May 8, 4-9 pm, 332 E. 2nd St, Davenport Enjoy local craft brews on the outdoor patio. Bring your friends and come support River Action, which will receive 10% of all sales.

Quad City Audubon Society: Monthly Meeting

Thurs, May 10, 7 pm, Butterworth Center, 1105 8th Street, Moline Mark Bowman will present a program about bird banding, the purposes and rewards, and discuss a new banding program at Neal Smith NWR.

Nahant Marsh: Family Program – Scaly Snakes

Sat, May 12, 10-11 am, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport Come for a chance to touch (optional) and learn about the amazing adaptations that help snakes hunt, eat, and protect themselves. $3 member, $6 guest, no fee for adults accompanying children. Register at or 563-336-3370.

Nahant Marsh: Beginning Birding

May 19, June 6, June 16, July 11, July 21, 6:30-9 am, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport Learn how to identify birds and their habitats with expert ornithologist Kelly McKay. Sponsored by Quad City Audubon Society. $6 member, $12 guest. Register at or 563-336-3370.

Sat, May 5, 1:00 pm, Wapsi River Center, 31555 52nd Ave, Dixon, IA 52745 Join naturalist Michael Granger for a tour of the Wapsi woods in search of spring wildflowers. Wild Ginger, Geranium, Bloodroot and May Apple are just some of the flowers to be found. Please call ahead to register 563-328-3286.

River Action’s Environmental Book Club

Nahant Marsh: Hidden Gems Tour

Heritage Days

Mon, May 7, 8:30 am, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport A guided hike through a unique part of Loud Thunder Forest Preserve. Bob Bryant and Brian Ritter will discuss some rare plants and animals found in the park. The hike will be easy to moderate. The group will meet at Nahant Marsh Education Center and car pool to Loud Thunder. Register at or 563-336-3370.

Tues, May 22, 7 pm, River Action office, 822 E. River Dr, Davenport, 563-322-2969 Discuss The Good Good Pig, by Sy Montgomery. Meetings are open to the public. Meet at the River Action Action office 822 E. River Dr, Davenport. May 27-28, 11-5 pm, Dan Nagle Walnut Grove Pioneer Village, 18817 290th Street Long Grove, Iowa Enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of yesteryear! The past will come to life at the Village as interpreters and reenactors recreate pioneer life. There will be pioneer craft demonstrations, folk music and performances by the Wapsi Wranglers and Kickapoo Indian Dancer. Dan Nagle Walnut Grove Pioneer Village is located on the north end of Scott County Park. Admission is $2/adult and $1/children.

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Nahant Marsh: Family Program – Pond Study

Sat, June 16, 10-11 am, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport Discover the fascinating creatures that live in the Marsh. Using dip nets, participants will catch ghost shrimp, dragonfly nymphs, water boatman, and more! Participants will learn about pond life, food webs, water quality, metamorphosis, and adaptations. $3 member, $6 guest, no fee for adults accompanying children. Register at or 563-336-3370.

Free Fishing Days

June 1-3 Let’s go fishing! During these three days, Iowa residents may fish and possess fish (within legal limits) without a fishing license.

Nahant Marsh: Breakfast Nature Club – Pollinator Citizen Science

Fri, June 1, 8-9 am, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport Explore the characteristics and adaptations of local flora and fauna. A continental breakfast is included. $5 Members. $15 Non-members. Register at nahantmarsh. org or 563-336-3370.

Quad Cities Triathlon

Sat, June 16, 1201 River Dr, Moline The race features one of the finest, most scenic river views in the country. It covers 5 races, 4 cities, 3 bridges, 2 states, and 1 island along the Mississippi River.

Quad Cities International Migratory Bird Day 2018

Saturday, June 2, 10am-3 pm, Quad City Botanical Center, Rock Island, IL The Quad Cities will be celebrating the “Year of the Bird.” This family event will feature speakers, bird watching hikes, falconry free flight demonstrations, education, vendors, live bird exhibits, hands on youth education and many more fun activities!

Gumbo Ya Ya

Sat, June 9, 4 pm, Rock Island Arts & Entertainment District, 1821 2nd Ave, Rock Island Catch the spirit and energy of “The Quarter.” Cajun, Zydeco, and Jazz bands will tantalize your ears, while Cajun spiced food will heat up your taste buds. Bead tosses, confetti, feather masks, feather boas, and showgirls will complete the Mardi Gras theme. $9 One Day Pass.

River Action: Ride the River - Island Adventure

Wapsi River Environmental Education Center: Pollinator Workshop Sat, June 16, 10-noon, Wapsi River Center, 31555 52nd Ave, Dixon, IA 52745 During this workshop, you will learn about The Great Sunflower Project which is an ongoing summer citizen science project that helps better understand the cause and effect of the decline in bee populations. Please call 563-328-3286 to register for this workshop.

Sun, June 17, Route open 7am-3:30pm Enjoy a bi-state tour of the Islands of the Quad Cities along riverfront bike trails. Come join the fun with the whole family for this Father’s Day tradition! Attractions and food at each island. Survivor games at LeClaire Park. Free River Bandits baseball tickets for Dads. Only one riverboat crossing.

Nahant Marsh: What’s on my Milkweed?

Tues, June 19, 6-8 pm, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport Learn about the different types of native milkweeds, which insects are attracted to each, and the growing needs of the various species. $6 member, $12 guest. Register at or 563-336-3370. Calendar, continued on page 14 >

Quad Cities Bicycle Club: Tour of the Mississippi River Valley June 9 – 10 Enjoy a well-supported, challenging ride on scenic roads through Midwest farmland and along the Mississippi River.

Retain the Rain Barrels

Don’t forget to buy a ‘Retain the Rain’ Rain Barrel! Rain barrels hold 60 gallons and include a diverter, mosquito netting, and spigot for a hose! $75 includes a standard-sized diverter or $80 for a large diverter at River Action, 822 E River Drive, Davenport, or online at

May/June/July 2018 | eddy Magazine


eddy C A L E N D A R

Red, White, & Boom! < Continued from page 13

We help make you a little more comfortable.

BioBlitz at Nahant Marsh

June 22-23, 2 pm–2 pm, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport A 24-hour period of intense biological sampling. This rare opportunity to join scientists and naturalists from around the region as they survey mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibiams, fish plants, insects and much more on this 305-acre wetland preserve. Register at or 563-336-3370.

Tues, July 3, 5:00-10:00 pm, 563-322-1706 The Quad Cities’ Independence Day celebration. The bi-state fireworks will launch from the river with primary viewing areas and family activities located at Modern Woodmen Park, LeClaire Park, Schwiebert Riverfront Park, Centennial Park, and Davenport Skybridge.

River Action’s Environmental Book Club

Tues, June 26, 7 pm, River Action office, 822 E. River Dr, Davenport, 563-322-2969 Discuss Zoobiquity, by Kathryn Bowers. Meetings are open to the public and meet at the River Action office 822 E. River Dr., Davenport.

July 

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Nahant Marsh: Breakfast Nature Club – Native Pollinators

Fri, July 6, 8-9 am, Nahant Marsh Education Center, 4220 Wapello Ave, Davenport Explore the characteristics and adaptations of local flora and fauna. Continental breakfast included. $5 members, $10 non-members. Register at nahantmarsh. org or 563-336-3370.

Mississippi Valley Blues Festival

July 6-7, LeClaire Park, 400 Beiderbecke Dr, Davenport Spend the weekend on the banks of the Mississippi River at LeClaire Park. Walter Trout and Jonny Lang are headliners. $15-$35.


Rock Island County Fair

July 17-21, 4200 Archer Dr, East Moline, 309-796-1620 Livestock Shows, Arts & Crafts, Talent Shows, Flowers, Family Fun for all ages!


July 22-28, Ride begins in Onawa and ends in Davenport Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa – a non-competitive ride going from west to east across Iowa.

River Action’s Environmental Book Club

Tues, July 24, 7 pm, River Action office, 822 E. River Dr, Davenport, 563-322-2969 Discuss The Urban Bestiary, by Lyanda Lynn Haupt. Meetings are open to the public and meet at the River Action office 822 E. River Dr., Davenport.

Bix 7 Run/Walk, QuickBix, and Jr. Bix

July 27-28, 500 E. 3rd St, Davenport, 563-383-2489 The 44th Annual race up the Brady Street hill. One of the top ten running events in the country!

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Quarterly magazine published by River Action, Inc. that is of interest to those who love the Mississippi and Rock Rivers, and outdoor recrea...


Quarterly magazine published by River Action, Inc. that is of interest to those who love the Mississippi and Rock Rivers, and outdoor recrea...