Ideas and Resources that Flow from River Sunday

River Sunday may fall close to the end of trout season in your area. Connect with a local Trout Unlimited chapter and get involved in stream bank restoration and their mission “to conserve, protect, and restore North America’s cold water fisheries and their watersheds.” Visit If you’re a fisher, consider and celebrate catch and release.

The Hudson River Sloop Clearwater has been at the forefront of the environmental movement for 45 years as champion of the Hudson River, working to pass legislation like the Clean Water Act, and providing innovative educational programs, environmental advocacy, and musical celebrations. Learn about the history of their project, sing along with Pete Seeger, and begin similar work in your own backyard! Visit

One of the strongest programs of the New Deal early in the Great Depression, the Tennessee Valley Authority sought to provide power, flood control, and more over 80,000 square miles. See history and current work for clean energy at

Visit YouTube and search “river documentary” to take a video visit to the world’s grandest, most famous and most important rivers—the Ganges, the Amazon, the Mekong, the Nile, the Mississippi, the Tigris and Euphrates, the Potomac, the Danube, among others.

With children, trace your watershed on a map. Find a creek or brook closest to home. Look for its headwaters. Then add more color (thicker markers or threads and yarns) as it adds water into larger streams and then rivers, following out all the way to its mouth in the open water. Notice continental divides and talk about the water cycle. Visit for an interactive diagram.

Watch your runoff. As rain falls on impervious surfaces, it speeds downslope, carrying debris and chemicals. Phosphorous, nitrates, and more from lawn fertilizers and farm sewage contributes to dangerous algae blooms and depletes oxygen in waters. Advocate to regulate the chemicals and reduce their use. Plant a rain garden for slow, pure infiltration.

Most basically, get out and explore! Paddle down a stream. Watch from a bridge. Turn over some rocks and discover what is underneath. Float sticks. Skip stones and meditate on the erosion that smoothed them so flat.