River Connections Newsletter - Fall/Winter 2015

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River Connections Newsletter of the Susquehanna Greenway Partnership

Fall/Winter 2015 Our Vision de

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Thanks for Making the Susquehanna Greenway a Community In the words of Charles Little, author of Greenways for America, “To make a greenway is to make a community.� I would like to give thanks to all of the people that have given of their time, talent and treasure over the last year to help create parks, trails, river accesses, and to conserve scenic and culturally important lands along the Susquehanna. Your contributions are making the community you live in better, and you are part of a much larger connected community we call the Susquehanna Greenway. By doing your part, whether it is volunteering, making an annual gift or a lifetime gift, you are creating a legacy landscape that connects us all and that everyone can enjoy. Thank you for your past contributions. Please join or renew your commitment to our Susquehanna Greenway community. It is only with your support that we can continue our important work. To learn more about our work, view photos of key projects or to make your contribution online, please visit our website www.SusquehannaGreenway.org. Thank you for your generous spirit of giving!

IN THIS ISSUE: yyGrowing Small Businesses

Trish Carothers, Executive Director

GREENWAY PHOTO CONTEST NOW OPEN What Susquehanna river town or special scene do you treasure? Submit your original photos and share your stories in our annual Susquehanna Greenway Photo Contest! Categories include: Susquehanna River Towns, Landscapes, Smiling Susquehanna Faces, and Youth Category. Cash prizes are awarded by a panel of judges and the winning images are framed and publically displayed in a Traveling Photo Gallery around the region. Visit our website to enter by June 30, 2016. Join us at a Scenes & Sips gallery event January 6, 2016 at Turkey Hill Brewing Co. in Bloomsburg. Grab your camera, get outside, explore, and create your Susquehanna moments. Photo by Rick Mason

The connected walking, biking, and water trails, unique river towns, and conserved lands of the Susquehanna Greenway improve the quality of life for the people who share it. The Susquehanna Greenway enhances the economic vitality of the communities that foster it, and preserves the natural resources of the River itself. The Greenway helps to protect our water quality, encourages healthy lifestyles, and inspires stewardship and civic pride in places where people love to live, work, play and visit.

yySelinsgrove Honored yyNew Signs Tell of River Heritage yyNew Trail Near Danville yyFaith Communities Embrace the River




Selinsgrove was designated an official “Susquehanna Greenway River Town” in October 2015 at the Isle of Que boat launch. Nearly 90 people attended to show their support for the River Town Program which will provide assistance to create an attractive town and riverfront while also protecting water quality and lessening flood damage through green infrastructure. The Selinsgrove River Town Team has identified projects, including creating an environmental education center on the Isle of Que.

What are residents and visitors exploring in these towns along the West Branch of the Susquehanna River missing? Are there places to rent canoes and kayaks? Are there safe trails for walking and biking, riverfront parks, a place to picnic? Is there a place to grab lunch after a bicycle ride, buy local food or a venue to enjoy local arts? To answer these questions, SGP and the Small Business Development Center at Lock Haven University have teamed up with The Progress Fund to conduct community assessments and user intercept surveys during the summer. The results were analyzed to identify potential strategies to expand businesses and address unmet needs in the communities. Next up: We are hosting public workshops to focus on strategies for improvements, supporting entrepreneurs and helping them develop business plans, marketing, and financing for their business along the river. We believe that reinvesting in our core communities is a smart strategy for sustainable development and that a strong local economy that is well connected to the Susquehanna means more people are engaged in ensuring the river is healthy. Here’s to health and prosperity!

Celebrating Selinsgrove River Town designation on the scenic Isle of Que.

River Towns Program

Revitalize and Promote River Towns and Their Riverfronts WHAT’S HAPPENED: MINI-GRANTS HELP LOCAL PROJECTS yy Covered Bridge Wayfinding and Interpretative Signage: Completed an yy Muncy Historical Signage: Created signage to economic impact study to fund, implement and maintain a signage program celebrate Muncy’s natural, historic, and scenic resources for covered bridges in Columbia and Montour counties. and tell the unique stories of this river town. yy Duncannon Sesquicentennial Historic Interpretive Signs: Created and installed ten historical markers highlighting town heritage and created a history trail through town.

yy North Branch Canal Trail Signage: Installed signage along the 6.2 mile trail between Danville and Catawissa, PA to increase trail use and safety.

yy Lock Haven Kiosk: Installed at the entranceway to the amphitheater and levee River Walk to promote greenway trails, parks, river accesses, local river events and activities, and better connect town and the river.

yy Shickshinny Orientation Panel: A sign at the new Creary Park Boat Launch area shares the Susquehanna’s connection to the Chesapeake Bay and orients visitors.

yy Millersburg Ferry Sign Upgrade: New signage shares the history of the last remaining ferry boats along the Susquehanna River.

The new Lock Haven Kiosk tells visitors about the city’s history and places to explore today.

Millersburg’s new sign shares photos and history of the ferry boats and provides a panel to post ferry events, news and information.

Land and Water Trails Creating Healthy Connections

NORTH BRANCH CANAL TRAIL OPENING The first section of the North Branch Canal Trail opened in October thanks to the hard work of many volunteers and partners including Montour Area Recreation Commission (MARC) and the Susquehanna Greenway Partnership. The trail will eventually cover 12 miles, linking Danville and Bloomsburg together along the old towpath for the PA Canal. The Susquehanna Greenway Partnership and MARC were awarded a $146,000 grant from the Williams Transco Pipeline Atlantic Sunrise Project/Conservation Fund Environmental Stewardship Program to support the construction of the trail between Danville and Catawissa, as well as planning for the Catawissa to Bloomsburg portion of the trail.

ENCOURAGING RECREATIONAL TOURISM PADDLE & PEDAL SOJOURN Our flagship outdoor educational program was a smashing success in June with four days of guided paddling, cycling and camping along the beautiful West Branch. Over 50 participants represented five different states! Local experts gave behind the scenes access to the natural and cultural resources of the West Branch and her river towns. Highlights included touring a state of the art water treatment facility, learning about new trail connections, cycling the Pine Creek and Susquehanna River Walk trails, eating delicious local meals, a live raptor presentation, and sleeping under the stars. Join us next year! Stay tuned to our website for info on our June 2016 sojourn.

Photo by Jeremy Quant

Education, Advocacy & Promotion Creating a River Community

RAIN GARDENS, RAIN BARRELS & MORE This past spring we were thrilled to partner with faith-based communities to engage their congregations in environmental stewardship to keep our river towns green and our river healthy.

teaching children to appreciate and care for our environment. Next up: Future plans include constructing a rain garden to manage stormwater, a composting program, and adding educational signage to the property.

With technical assistance from the Susquehanna Greenway Partnership and a grant provided by the Grazia Bella Fund of the Luzerne Foundation, Trinity United Methodist Church (TUMC) of Danville installed four rain barrels on their property after they were enthusiastically painted by children in the daycare program. The barrels capture rain from the church roof and store it until it’s needed to nourish plants and flowers on the church grounds. Slowing and storing rainwater on site helps to lessen local flooding and improve water quality. Church children also completed an acorn planting project. Next spring, the saplings will be planted at the church and some will be given to the children to take home. We are excited that these educational projects are

TUMC’s Rick DiGiacomo helps kids plant oak trees and become good stewards.



Our mission to make it possible to walk, bike, and paddle from town to town was recently bolstered by the generous work of the Lewisburg Sunset Rotary. Our sincere thanks to the Rotary for planning and hosting a fabulous benefit cruise for 80 friends of the river on the Hiawatha paddlewheel boat near Williamsport. The night cruise, complete with live music by the Blue River Spell band, dinner, and dancing, raised over $500 for SGP’s programs. “Despite the rain, people loved the opportunity to go quietly up the river,” reported club President Chris Stratton. Many thanks to the Lewisburg Sunset Rotary for the Photo by Gene Walls support!

Jerry S. Walls, FAICP, Chair Marty Walzer, Treasurer Susan Browning, Secretary Sid Furst

Bob Rolley

Marel King

Kathy Scullin

Suzanne Lee

Peter Smith

Timm Moyer

Linda Woodward

REGIONAL PARTNERS Alice Trowbridge, RLA Annette Schultz, Endless Mountains Heritage Region David Buck, Endless Mountains Heritage Region Janie French, Headwaters Charitable Trust D & L National Heritage Corridor Mark Platts, Susquehanna Gateway Heritage Area


Jonathan Pinkerton, Susquehanna Gateway Heritage Area

Find river events, fun festivals, challenging races, trail outings, community clean-ups, and more listed on our Calendar of Events: www.SusquehannaGreenway.org/calendar

SPECIAL THANKS TO: The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources; and Susquehanna Health for donating the printing of this newsletter.

Dee Alwine, Vice Chair

STAFF Trish Carothers, Executive Director Barbara Bogle, Program Assistant Bridget Kane, Membership & Volunteer Coordinator Erin Pierce, Program Coordinator Michele Richards, Development Associate Kassia Janesch, AmeriCorps/Education & Outreach Program Assistant

w w w.SusquehannaGreenway.org Susquehanna Greenway Partnership 201 Furnace Road Lewisburg, PA 17837

Like us on Facebook! www.Facebook.com/SusquehannaGreenway

Scarlett Littman, AmeriCorps/River Towns Program Assistant