Outreach Update… Janice Reid
Greetings. Outreach has been challenging during the global pandemic. We have had several events cancelled and we have chosen to cancel events to limit the public exposure to the covid19 virus. Our focus has shifted from gatherings and outdoor events to virtual presentations and virtual events.
The biggest event of the summer for Umpqua Watersheds is usually the River Appreciation Day celebration of music along a stretch of our beautiful local waterways. As plans to host an in-person event seemed to disappear, unlike the virus, we did not want to forego some celebration of our Umpqua. We sent a request to several musicians that are in our area to help put together a virtual performance that would highlight songs about rivers and water. Several musicians responded and we were able to put together a virtual performance to celebrate the river. Bob Hall and Michelle McKinney Hall of Homemade Jam performed 3 songs, Marnie Allbritten performed her original song about Oregon and Sean Shea performed his previously unreleased song Underground River. One advantage of the virtual presentation is that you did not miss out! You can still view the performances on the Umpqua Watersheds website. You can also view Bob Allen’s nice video of the history of River Appreciation Day. (www.umpquawatersheds.org/river-appreciation-day).
We cancelled our Youth Wilderness Campout at Twin Lakes as well due to concerns that we could not safely and enjoyably protect the campers and participants from contracting the virus. Instead, we encouraged parents to explore the Umpqua on their own with their children, whether it be a day hike or overnight stay in the forests of the Umpqua. Our hike schedule remains regular and is posted on our website calendar of events. Hikes are limited to 10 UW members and reservations are requested. Diana Pace has started a blog of her hikes in the Umpqua Watershed. Check it out on our website!
Our biggest fundraiser of the fall is usually the Umpqua Brew Fest. Proceeds from Brew Fest help fund our AmeriCorps environmental coordinator. We will not be holding that event since it would be difficult to maintain the sanitary conditions required to prevent the spread of the covid19 virus. The handling of beer sampling glasses alone would be extremely risky and difficult to ensure compliance with regulations. Kasey Hovik’s article in this newsletter will address our plans for a replacement fundraiser so we can continue to provide the activities developed by our AmeriCorps. Check out the Home Explorer series created by our AmeriCorps on our website.
Our radio station is now live streaming (https://live365.com/station/99-7-KQUA-The-River-a44781) with updated programming. If you have ideas on radio talk show topics, would like to be interviewed on a particular local conservation topic, or have other interest in the radio shows, please email me at email@example.com. We have underwriting opportunities as well for our radio and at just 50 cents a spot, it is great recognition.
As always, we have business endorser opportunities. The last page of this newsletter lists those businesses that support Umpqua Watersheds and we ask that you lend your support to them.
Even though our events and opportunities to participate have become limited, you can still help us know what you are doing to help with our watershed health. Go to https://umpquawatersheds.org/volunteer-hours/ to enter your activity and hours. We want to know that you are volunteering.
If you would like to organize an outreach event that you think would be fun and interesting to our members, please contact me. Thanks