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Play It Safe on the Poudre this Summer!

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As the Colorado snowpack starts to melt and rivers and streams across the state begin to rise, its important to remember to Play It Safe on the Poudre!

The Cache la Poudre River offers many miles of incredible recreational opportunities – the scenic river runs from mild (class I-II) to wild (class V), attracting people from around the country to its beautiful waters. However, most people do not understand the dangers that exist while recreating on the river.

The Poudre River presents numerous hazards. Broken or low-hanging tree branches, hidden beneath the water, can snag a person out for a lazy afternoon tubing trip. Freezing waters made cold by spring runoff can cause a person to react slowly, when quicker action is needed, or possibly suffer hypothermia. And deceptively fast-moving waters pose a drowning risk to even the most experienced swimmers.

“The Poudre River is a source of local pride that draws thousands to its waters each year. We wouldn’t dissuade peoples’ love for it and what it represents. But the river is equal parts beautiful and destructive. Its power is easy to underestimate, and river-related tragedy can befall anyone at any time,” said former Poudre Fire Authority spokeswoman Madeline Noblett.

The Play It Safe on the Poudre program raises awareness about approaches to recreating on the river in safe and sustainable ways, and helps to build the capacity of the Poudre Fire Authority and Larimer County rescue teams. The program also calls attention to the history of in-river structures that represent hazards to recreation.

Play It Safe on the Poudre principles:

  1. Wear a life vest
    • Use proper floatation devices
    • Wear shoes
    • Wear a helmet
    • Don’t tie anything to yourself or your tubes
  2. Safe to go?
    • Know the weather and water conditions
    • The water is melted snow – it’s always cold!
    • Avoid rocks, branches, logs and debris in the river
  3. Know where you are
    • Take a map
    • Plan your take-out location before you get in the river
  4. Float sober, float safe
    • Alcohol and drugs impair judgement
  5. Be Courteous
    • Pack it in; Pack it out
    • Share the river
  6. What if you flip?
    • Don’t stand up in the river; avoid foot entrapment
    • Float on your back with feet pointing downstream and toes out of the water
    • Use your arms to paddle to shore

 

Download a River Access and Safety Map

 

 

Other representatives who have taken part in the group’s efforts represent: Poudre Fire Authority; multiple departments within the City of Fort Collins, including the city’s Natural Areas Department; Larimer County; the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office and Larimer County Emergency Services; Colorado Parks and Wildlife, and more.

For more info please visit www.poudreheritage.org/playitsafe

In Memory of William “Bill” Fischer

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Bill Fischer

In memory of William “Bill” Fischer

The Poudre Heritage Alliance (PHA) staff, Board of Directors, and the Northern Colorado water community as a whole is mourning the loss of William “Bill” Fischer, who passed on May 7, 2019, after a brief illness.

Fischer, an attorney, had recently retired from the firm Fischer, Brown, Bartlett & Gunn, P.C., in Fort Collins. In his law practice, he represented mutual ditch and reservoir companies, municipalities, water users associations, water districts and individual water users.

Bill was a supporter of the PHA’s and the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA). He also served on several boards related to natural resources, water rights and water quality issues in Northern Colorado, including the Water Quality Advisory Committee of the Larimer-Weld Council of Governments, the Natural Resources Advisory Board for the City of Fort Collins and the Fort Collins Water Board.

Bill’s life will be celebrated at 2 p.m. on Monday, May 20, at Windsong Estate Event Center, 2901 Saddler Blvd., Fort Collins. Memorials are to the United Way of Larimer County or the charity of the donor’s choice.

Mothers Day

4 Fun Mother’s Day Adventures in the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area

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Take your mom on a Mother’s Day adventure she will never forget! (Photo by  Gabriele Woolever)

 

Happy Mother’s Day to all the beautiful mommas out there! It’s a wonderful time of year in Northern Colorado to get outside and enjoy the outdoors as a family. The Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA) has some incredible natural, cultural and historical resources that make a Mother’s Day Adventure possible for the entire family.

Check out some of the ideas we have put together for your family this Mother’s Day:

  1. Bike the Poudre Trail! PHA’s Pedaling the Poudre program has some great self-guided routes that are appropriate for all skill levels!
  2. Get wet in the river or take a stroll down the Poudre Trail, while remembering to Play It Safe.
  3. Head to Picnic Rock for a beautiful family lunch on the river.
  4. Take mom to River Bluffs Open Space for a nature hike and some birding. Bring your binoculars! The Poudre River Trail at River Bluffs Open Space connects to 21 beautiful miles of trail running southeast through wildlife areas and parks.

 

About Poudre Heritage Alliance
The goal of the Poudre Heritage Alliance (PHA) is through interpretive and educational programming and media to build a deeper understanding of the Poudre River’s national significance including its role in influencing water development, water law, and water management.  
Poudre River Fish Ladder at Watson Lake

Poudre Heritage Alliance Collaborates to Improve Poudre River Ecosystem Health

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A new fish ladder (left side) on the Poudre River at the Bellvue-Watson State Wildlife Area & Watson Lake will reconnect more than 2 miles of the Poudre River, improving ecosystem health and fish habitat (Photo by Jordan Williams).

 

On May 1, 2019, Poudre Heritage Alliance (PHA) staff joined with partners and community members at a ribbon cutting ceremony for the completion of a new fish ladder at the Bellvue-Watson State Wildlife Area and Watson Lake. The new structure helps to connect fragmented sections of the Poudre River and improve aquatic habitat for fish.

This fish ladder will help the following species:
· Longnose dace
· Longnose suckers
· White suckers
· Brown trout
· Rainbow trout

“Outside of the benefits to aquatic life, this project is important as it showcases the feasibility of fish passage at these large diversion structures and will hopefully further momentum for these types of projects,” said CPW Aquatic Biologist Kyle Battige. “It also serves as an example of the collaboration and team effort from multiple entities that these large-scale conservation projects will have to have in order to be successful in today’s world.”

Kathleen Benedict, Executive Director of the Poudre Heritage Alliance, helps to unveil the new fish ladder at Watson Lake.

PHA will provide a grant to fund the interpretive signage at the site of the fish ladder to help tell the story of water management in the area and how diversion structures still have many uses today, including for agricultural users like project partners Morning Fresh Dairy and Noosa.

Signage and interpretation is an important educational program of the Poudre Heritage Alliance. By supporting facility enhancements along the trails, the Cache la Poudre River NHA will continue to be a premiere local and national attraction as the trail corridor truly becomes a cohesive Heritage Trail.

We hope this will be the first of many fish ladders along the Poudre River that can help to improve the health of the river’s ecosystem.

This project was made possible by Colorado Parks & Wildlife (CPW), along with funding partners noosa yoghurt, Northern Water, Morning Fresh Dairy, Poudre Heritage Alliance and Trout Unlimited.

 

 

 

For more information about PHA and this project please contact Megan Maiolo-Heath, Communications Coordinator, at communications@poudreheritage.org.

Second Annual Poudre Pour Receives Fort Fund Grant

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FORT COLLINS, Colo. – The second annual Poudre Pour has been awarded a $4,000 Fort Fund (City of Fort Collins) grant to support the event in 2019. The Poudre Heritage Alliance and 12 different craft brewers are partnering to host the Poudre Pour, an educational celebration of the Poudre River from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 30, at the Carnegie Center for Creativity, 200 Mathews St, in Fort Collins, Colorado.

The Poudre Pour will highlight water and the importance of the Cache la Poudre River to more than 634,000[i] Coloradoans living in Larimer and Weld Counties. The event focuses on craft brews and the major ingredient that makes the stouts, lagers and ales so tasty…WATER from the Poudre River!

This family-friendly event is not your typical brewfest! Poudre Pour attendees can enjoy craft brew tastings from: Purpose Brewing & Cellars, Odell, New Belgium, Horse & Dragon, High Hops, Weldwerks, Gilded Goat, Intersect, Maxline, Snowbank, Rally King, and Soul-Squared. Attendees can also enjoy coffees from Human Bean, Kombucha from Turtle Mountain Fermentery, and natural sodas from Rocky Mountain Soda Company. Water from the Poudre River nourishes the healthy farm produce that will be used by Z Catering to craft tasty appetizers made with local beers such as beer cheese and jalapeno-stuffed pretzel bites and salted caramel porter popcorn. The all-inclusive tickets range from $5-$40, and they must be purchased online: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/poudre-pour-2019-tickets-52679495790

The Carnegie Center for Creativity and Heritage Courtyard in downtown Fort Collins serves as the backdrop for the family-friendly event offering both indoor and outdoor activities. Attendees can dig the vibes of the Blues Society and BethStudio; peruse the art gallery/auction that highlights artworks inspired by the beauty and wonder of the region; meet Northern Arapaho tribal elders in the video series airing in the Idea Lab; engage in a “River Rangers” scavenger hunt; bid on silent auction items such as a whitewater rafting trip or a craft beer goodie basket; and participate in hands-on activities in each of the four 19th century cabins that will be hosted by organizations such as the Windsor-Severance Historical Society and Blue Federal Credit Union.

The signature educational happening of the day will be a panel of experts discussing “A River of Many Uses” in relation to water law and all the beneficial uses of Poudre River water. The panel will include Corey Odell from Odell Brewing, Randy Ray from the Central Colorado Water Conservancy District, Christa Cherava from the National Parks Conservation Association, Nic Koontz from Native Hill Farm, and Cheri Yost from Rocky Mountain National Park.

Proceeds will benefit the Poudre Heritage Alliance, managing entity of the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area – working to PROMOTE a variety of historical and cultural opportunities, ENGAGE people in their river corridor and INSPIRE learning, preservation, and stewardship.

The event is enabled through the generous support of in-kind donations and sponsorships that make it possible to both celebrate and educate about our most important resource – water.

In addition to our brewer/beverage partners, Poudre Pour sponsors to date include: The City of Fort Collins – Fort FundCity of Greeley, Bohemian FoundationLamp Rynearson, Blue Federal Credit Union, Neenan Archistruction, Dellenbach Motors, Block One Events, Scheels All Sport, Von Trotha-Firestien Farm at BracewellWindsor Severance Historical Society, Leprino Foods and our media partners/in-kind partners which include The New Scene Magazine, North Forty News, KUNC, 105.5 the Colorado Sound, Signarama, and NoCo Style.

The Poudre Heritage Alliance and community partners are joining to celebrate the wonder of water and to protect our water heritage for this and future generations!

Tickets to the Poudre Pour are limited and MUST be purchased in advance: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/poudre-pour-2019-tickets-52679495790

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ABOUT THE CACHE LA POUDRE RIVER NATIONAL HERITAGE AREA AND THE POUDRE HERITAGE ALLIANCE

The Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA) tells the story of the river where Western Water Law took shape and how the river still informs the use of water throughout the arid West today.

CALA’s 501(c)3 nonprofit managing entity – the Poudre Heritage Alliance – PROMOTES a variety of historical and cultural opportunities; ENGAGES people in their river corridor; and INSPIRES learning, preservation, and stewardship. Find out more at:  https://www.poudreheritage.org/

 

[i] According to the US Census Bureau as of July 1, 2016 the population in Larimer County, CO totaled 339,993, and the population in Weld County totaled 294,932.

Poudre Pour 2019: Celebrating the Bounty that Flows from the Poudre River

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FORT COLLINS (February 21, 2019) – What do farm-to-table foods; craft ales, sours and stouts; and Northern Colorado’s water heritage have in common? The Poudre River!

The Poudre Heritage Alliance, in partnership with local craft brewers, is hosting the 2nd Annual POUDRE POUR – an educational celebration of the bounty that flows from the Poudre River – on Saturday, March 30 from Noon to 4:00PM. The family-friendly event features craft brew tastings, coffees and natural sodas; farm fresh ale-inspired appetizers; history and heritage activities; art exhibit and auction; musical entertainment; education speakers and more. https://poudreheritage.org/event/poudre-pour-2019/

Water from the Poudre River has nourished our region for centuries. Today, the Poudre and other rivers in the West are under exceptional stress due to growing populations, drought, and other demands on our water supplies. The Poudre Heritage Alliance raises awareness about water issues and connects people to their water heritage through a variety of year-round programs and events such as the Poudre Pour.

“As we enter another decade of service connecting people to their water heritage, we will help inspire the next generation of river stewards,” said Kathleen Benedict, Executive Director of the Poudre Heritage Alliance. “The Poudre Pour helps us raise awareness about water issues, connect people to their river corridor and celebrate all of the ways the Poudre River benefits our lives.”

And, good water is a key ingredient in the craft brews we enjoy in Northern Colorado. “Humans are roughly 60% water so we should care about our water,” said Peter Bouckaert, brewmaster for Purpose Brewing and Cellars. “Beer is around 95% water, so brewers care about their water being clean and free of heavy metal, pesticides, harmful microorganisms and chemicals. Brewers are also parents so we care about our kids drinking 100% water. Clean water is the unconscious privilege we only realize if we do not have it.”

Poudre Pour attendees can enjoy craft brew tastings from: Purpose Brewing & Cellars, Odell, New Belgium, Horse & Dragon, High Hops, Weldwerks, Gilded Goat, Intersect, Maxline, Snowbank, Rally King, and Soul-Squared. Attendees can also enjoy coffees from Human Bean, and natural sodas from Rocky Mountain Soda Company.  Water from the Poudre River nourishes the healthy farm produce that will be used by Z Catering to craft tasty appetizers made with local beers such as beer cheese and jalapeno-stuffed pretzel bites and salted caramel porter popcorn. The all-inclusive tickets range from $5-$40, and they can be purchased online: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/poudre-pour-2019-tickets-52679495790

The Carnegie Center for Creativity and Heritage Courtyard in downtown Fort Collins serves as the backdrop for the family-friendly event offering both indoor and outdoor activities. Attendees can dig the vibes of the Blues Society; peruse the art gallery/auction that highlights artworks inspired by the beauty and wonder of the region; meet Northern Arapaho tribal elders in the video series airing in the Idea Lab; engage in a “River Rangers” scavenger hunt; bid on silent auction items such as a whitewater rafting trip or a craft beer goodie basket; participate in hands-on activities in each of the four 19th century cabins that will be hosted by organizations such as the Windsor-Severance Historical Society and Blue Federal Credit Union.

The signature educational happening of the day will be a panel of experts discussing “A River of Many Uses” in relation to water law and all the beneficial uses of Poudre River water. The panel will include Corey Odell from Odell Brewing, Randy Ray from the Central Colorado Water Conservancy District, Christa Cherava from the National Parks Conservation Association, Nic Koontz from Native Hill Farm, and a surprise guest from Rocky Mountain National Park.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the Poudre Heritage Alliance, the 501c3 managing nonprofit of the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area. The Poudre Heritage Alliance works to PROMOTE a variety of historical and cultural opportunities, ENGAGE people in their river corridor and INSPIRE learning, preservation, and stewardship.

Event Date:         Saturday, March 30, 2019 from 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM (held rain, snow or shine)

Location:              Carnegie Center for Creativity and Heritage Courtyard, 200 Mathews St, Fort Collins.

Tickets & Info:   https://poudreheritage.org/event/poudre-pour-2019

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ABOUT THE CACHE LA POUDRE RIVER NATIONAL HERITAGE AREA AND THE POUDRE HERITAGE ALLIANCE

The Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA) tells the story of the river where Western Water Law took shape and how the river still informs the use of water throughout the arid West today.

CALA’s 501(c)3 nonprofit managing entity – the Poudre Heritage Alliance – PROMOTES a variety of historical and cultural opportunities; ENGAGES people in their river corridor; and INSPIRES learning, preservation, and stewardship. Find out more at:  https://www.poudreheritage.org/

*Picture above: Brewers and staff from Purpose Brewing and Cellars serve their wares at the 2018 Poudre Pour

Tonko, McKinley Introduce Bill to Strengthen National Heritage Areas System

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Bipartisan legislation backed by 60+ members establishes process for designating, evaluating and maintaining National Heritage Areas across the U.S.

Regional note: All three National Heritage Areas in Colorado, including the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area, Sangre de Cristo National Heritage Area, and South Park National Heritage Area, support the National Heritage Area of 2019 (HR-1049). One of the bill co-sponsors is Joe Neguse, the newly elected representative for Colorado District 2.

WASHINGTONRepresentatives Paul Tonko (D-NY) and David McKinley (R-WV) announced today that they have introduced the National Heritage Area Act of 2019, backed by a bipartisan group of 60 total cosponsors. This bill establishes, for the first time, standard criteria for designating new National Heritage Areas and creates a rigorous process for maintaining existing National Heritage Areas.

“National Heritage Areas connect us, and perhaps more importantly future generations, with the voices and places that have shaped who we are as Americans,” said Tonko. “These sites deliver more than just a significant economic return, they help us reveal the diverse and sometimes hidden gems of our cultural heritage and fill us with a sense of place that brings our complex history to life. Our National Heritage Area Act will help establish and maintain the strong local partnerships necessary to restore and protect these sites for generations to come. I am grateful to my fellow co-chair David McKinley and all of our cosponsors who recognize that we must know our heritage to understand ourselves.”

Tonko and McKinley are longtime supporters of National Heritage Areas and serve as co-chairs of the Heritage Areas Caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives.

“The National Heritage Area Act will allow us to continue to celebrate and promote the beauty of our states, preserve our heritage, and plan for the future. National Heritage Areas ensure that the people who live, work and visit our beautiful states can enjoy them,” McKinley said. “Our bill will provide a clearly defined structure to oversee the management of heritage areas and will allow these popular public-private-partnerships to better preserve our national heritage, spur economic growth and create jobs.”

National Heritage Areas are sites that hold historic, cultural, and natural significance to the people of the United States of America. The National Heritage Area (NHA) Program is a cost-effective program run through the Department of the Interior based on a public-private partnership model that matches every federal dollar with an average of $5.50 in other public and private funding. There are 49 National Heritage Areas across the country including the Erie Canalway and Hudson River Valley Heritage Areas, which continue to benefit the Capital Region. These sites and the organizations that maintain them have become a source of vital job creation and economic, cultural, historical, environmental, and community development.

The National Heritage Area Act:

  • Establishes a standardized process for establishing new National Heritage Areas (NHAs)
  • Creates an evaluation process for existing NHAs that guarantees accountability
  • Modernizes the program to allow for long-term sustainability
  • Defines an oversight structure that will effectively allow these popular public-private partnerships to better preserve the nation’s heritage and spur economic growth with basic federal support

The Alliance of National Heritage Areas offered strong support, saying, “We are very grateful for the leadership of Congressmen Paul Tonko and David McKinley in sponsoring the National Heritage Area of 2019 along with each of the bill’s 60 co-sponsors. This reflects broad bi-partisan support from across the country. The Alliance of National Heritage Areas looks forward to working with Congress to advance this significant piece of legislation which furthers National Heritage Areas’ efforts to preserve, protect, and promote our nation’s story.

The National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) also expressed strong support for the bill: “National Heritage Areas use public-private partnerships to preserve and promote the broad range of stories that make up our rich, shared American experience. The National Heritage Area Act standardizes the way heritage areas are designated, managed and assessed, and will make an already effective program even more impactful and efficient.

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*Picture above of the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area as seen from the Picnic Rock area

Poudre Pub Talk™ Series for 2019 Announced

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EXPERTS DISCUSS WATER ISSUES AT LOCAL CRAFT BREWERIES

FORT COLLINS (December 21, 2018) – What do craft brewers and the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area have in common? Good water! The Poudre Heritage Alliance has teamed up with leading water experts, cultural historians, and local craft brewers to raise awareness about water issues through a free, informative, and entertaining series of Poudre Pub Talks™ hosted January through March 2019. The pub talks will again lead up the second annual Poudre Pour on Saturday March 30, 2019.

Water makes life possible and is essential for economies to function. But, freshwater resources such as the Cache la Poudre River are in jeopardy due to growing demand, pollution, climate change and other factors. These pressures create profound risks for businesses and communities. We can’t possibly navigate a topic as large as this without some sense of perspective, and some help from the experts.

The 2019 Poudre Pub Talk™ series kicks off on Saturday January 5, 2019 from 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm at Snowbank Brewing. Jennifer Kovecses from the Coalition for the Poudre River Watershed and Nate Boschmann from Wildlands Restoration Volunteers will discuss the importance of watershed health and current initiatives taking place in the Poudre River corridor.

On the following Saturday January 12, from 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm at Soul Squared Brewing, ‎Zach Thode, a cattle rancher from Livermore, will discuss how irrigation technology benefits local communities and economies. Zach spent his career as an agricultural engineer, constructing municipal water treatment facilities across Colorado and Wyoming, and designing large scale, gravity-fed irrigation water systems.

The complete Poudre Pub Talk™ series features guest speakers talking about a range of subjects related to local water, its use, and its history which can be found here: https://poudreheritage.org/pub-talks/

The Poudre Pub Talk™ series again culminates in the second annual, family-friendly Poudre Pour™ event on Saturday March 30, 2019. The Poudre Pour is an educational celebration of water from the Poudre River! The event features a variety of craft beverage tastings, entertainment, educational discussions, hands-on activities, an art exhibition and silent auction, and more. https://poudreheritage.org/event/poudre-pour-2019/

Highlights from the 2018 Pub Talk series include a book reading and signing by Tershia d’Elgin, author of the “Man Who Thought He Owned Water” and descendant of former Colorado Governor Benjamin Eaton. During her Intersect Brewery Pub Talk in January 2018, d’Elgin also donated a family painting of Benjamin Eaton’s original homestead along the Poudre River to the Colorado State University Water Resources Archive. The online link to this special collection can be found here: https://mountainscholar.org/handle/10217/186458.

The Poudre Heritage Alliance and our craft beverage partners invite you to join us in celebrating the wonders of water and protecting our water heritage for this and future generations!

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*Picture above: Executive Director Jennifer Kovecses from the Coalition for the Poudre River Watershed discussing wildfire restoration at a 2018 Pub Talk hosted by Maxline Brewing and the Poudre Heritage Alliance.

Play It Safe on the Poudre Initiative Receives $10,000 donation from Blue Federal Credit Union

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FORT COLLINS (December 11, 2018) – During a special event at Blue Federal Credit Union’s (Blue) downtown Fort Collins Branch, the Poudre Heritage Alliance (PHA) and Larimer County Dive Rescue Team (LCDRT) received a $10,000 donation towards the Play It Safe on the Poudre Initiative. The generous financial support from Blue will allow LCDRT to purchase a new boat and rescue equipment.

Matt Jackson, President of the nonprofit, volunteer-led LCDRT  shared, “On behalf of the citizens of Larimer County and the Larimer County Dive Rescue Team, I would like to personally thank the Poudre Heritage Alliance and Blue for their hard work and continuing effort to keep the Poudre River a safe environment for recreators and for helping keep LCDRT prepared to respond to water-related incidents.”

The seed was planted for this Initiative when the National Park Foundation awarded the PHA a grant to educate the community about the diversion structures within the river and how they affect recreational use. After a river fatality occurred in the summer of 2017, multiple agencies came together to launch the “Play it Safe on the Poudre” Initiative. The program partners included the Poudre Fire Authority, the City of Fort Collins, Larimer County, Larimer County Sheriff’s Office, LCDRT, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, National Park Foundation, and Poudre Heritage Alliance for the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area.

The Initiative’s first goals were to install hazard and safety signage upstream from the diversion structures; install put-in and take-out signage that shared safety information; and create maps of the recreational routes. Once signage was installed, efforts focused on community education given that knowledge is a key to safety awareness. Moving forward the Initiative will continue education and outreach activities in Larimer County, and expand partnerships “downstream” in Windsor and Weld County.

The Blue Federal Credit Union believes in supporting their community and those who serve to help protect and keep us safe. With that in mind, Blue partnered with PHA in support of the Play it Safe Initiative by creating the first-ever “Splash-In” event.  The event was held on August 24 at Horsetooth Reservoir as a fundraiser for the initiative and Blue generously matched donations up to $10,000.  The Poudre Heritage Alliance and the “Play it Safe” Initiative thank Blue and the community for their support!

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ABOUT THE CACHE LA POUDRE RIVER NATIONAL HERITAGE AREA AND THE POUDRE HERITAGE ALLIANCE

The Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA) tells the story of the river where Western Water Law began and still informs the use of water throughout the arid West today.  CALA shares the long struggle to sustain a viable agricultural economy and meet the growing needs of a diverse and expanding population, while celebrating the Poudre River.

CALA’s 501(c)3 nonprofit managing entity – the Poudre Heritage Alliance (PHA) – PROMOTES a variety of historical and cultural opportunities; ENGAGES people in their river corridor; and INSPIRES learning, preservation, and stewardship. Find out more at:  https://www.poudreheritage.org/

ABOUT BLUE FEDERAL CREDIT UNION

Blue Federal Credit Union is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial institution serving nearly 80,000 members in Colorado and Wyoming communities. Blue FCU focuses to return company profits to their members and communities, rather than outside investors.  As a credit union with a mission to Doing Good, they are honored to help people succeed financially and strengthen the communities which we serve.

The Blue Foundation is an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit charitable organization founded to help Blue Federal Credit Union and our members fulfill our Do Good mission. We champion, fund and celebrate local nonprofit causes that keep our community and people strong, financially stable and healthy. For more information about Blue FCU and the Blue Foundation, please visit https://www.bluefcu.com/

Featured Photo: Matt Jackson from LCDRT, Kathleen Benedict from PHA, and Michele Bolkovatz from Blue

Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area Receives Field Trip Grant From National Park Foundation

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Fort Collins, CO (October 11, 2018) – The Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA) and the nonprofit managing entity—the Poudre Heritage Alliance (PHA)—will receive a $5,000 field trip grant for the 2018-2019 school year from the National Park Foundation (NPF), the official nonprofit partner of the National Park Service. The NPF grant will go towards PHA’s Learning in Our Watershed™ program, which provides scholarships to schools in Larimer and Weld county to visit various locations throughout CALA.

This grant is part of the Foundation’s Open OutDoors for Kids program which creates pathways for kids to explore and connect with national park experiences.

“Trekking along trails, observing our natural ecosystems and engaging with our shared history are experiences that benefit all children,” said National Park Foundation President Will Shafroth. “Making it possible for America’s youth to explore our national parks is an investment in their future and the future of the national parks community.”

Through this partnership with NPF, PHA will be able to provide scholarships that defray transportation and admission costs for at least 17 schools and 1,500 children grades 3rd-6th. The Field Trip grants are available on a first come, first served basis through PHA’s website: https://www.poudreheritage.org/field-trip-grants/. Priority is given to new schools who have not already applied for a scholarship this year, but there are many different locations to visit. Popular destinations within the Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area include the Poudre Learning Center, Children’s Water Festivals in Greeley and Fort Collins, Centennial Village in Greeley, and the Fort Collins Museum of Discovery. The Poudre Heritage Alliance also offers guided wellness walks as a way to explore the heritage area through this program.

“Many children and community members do not realize that they have a National Park-quality natural resource right in their backyard with the Cache la Poudre River,” said Poudre Heritage Alliance Executive Director Kathleen Benedict. “The Learning in Our Watershed program allows the PHA to partner with many great organizations throughout Larimer and Weld County to bring local youth to the National Heritage Area. Once they arrive at one of our pre-approved field trip sites, they receive structured educational sessions on numerous topics, from riparian eco-systems to local historical reenactments.”

This past summer, PHA also received a $4,000 grant from the Rotary Club to help fund Larimer County field trip scholarships. There are still some funds left from that grant to support grade levels in Larimer County outside of the 3rd-6th range that is part of the NPF’s grant award for PHA’s Learning in Our Watershed program.

“Dos Rios elementary greatly appreciates the Poudre Heritage Alliance and the opportunities they provide us to have such wonderful learning experiences on our field trips. We always enjoy the Poudre Learning Center and the opportunity it provides us to get out in nature and do inquiry-based learning. Each aspect of our field trip was fantastic!” – 5th grade teacher at Dos Rios.

For the full list of grantees and their projects, click here.

ABOUT THE CACHE LA POUDRE RIVER NATIONAL HERITAGE AREA

The Cache la Poudre River National Heritage Area (CALA) tells the story of the river where Western Water Law began and still informs the use of water throughout the arid West today.  CALA shares the long struggle to sustain a viable agricultural economy, and meet the growing needs of a diverse and expanding population, while conserving the Poudre River’s health.

CALA’s 501(c)3 nonprofit managing entity – the Poudre Heritage Alliance – PROMOTES a variety of historical and cultural opportunities; ENGAGES people in their river corridor; and INSPIRES learning, preservation, and stewardship. Find out more at:  https://www.poudreheritage.org/

ABOUT THE NATIONAL PARK FOUNDATION

Celebrating 50 years, the National Park Foundation is the official charity of America’s national parks and nonprofit partner to the National Park Service. Chartered by Congress in 1967, the National Park Foundation raises private funds to help PROTECT more than 84 million acres of national parks through critical conservation and preservation efforts, CONNECT all Americans with their incomparable natural landscapes, vibrant culture and rich history, and ENGAGE the next generation of park stewards. In 2016, commemorating the National Park Service’s 100th anniversary, the Foundation launched The Centennial Campaign for America’s National Parks, a comprehensive fundraising campaign to strengthen and enhance the future of these national treasures for the next hundred years.  Find out more and become a part of the national park community at www.nationalparks.org.

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Poudre Heritage Alliance

Jordan Williams

970-295-4851

programs@poudreheritage.org

 

National Park Foundation

Alanna Sobel

202-796-2538

asobel@nationalparks.org

 

(Featured picture: Resurrection Christian students on their Learning in Our Watershed field trip to the Poudre Learning Center in September 2018)