Monthly e-news from the Lower Raritan Watershed Partnership
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September 2015 - Vol. 1, Issue 5
Dear Friends of the Lower Raritan Watershed -

Fall bird migration reports for the Lower Raritan Watershed are trickling in: an American Golden Plover in Somerset County, Cormorants gathering in Farrington Lake, lots of Osprey heading south. The National Weather Service's Next Generation Radar (NEXRAD) images show increasing nocturnal bird migration underway over much of New Jersey. Goodbye birds, goodbye summer!

In August we wrapped up stream monitoring for 2015, conducted our first pollinator count, heard from Rutgers Entomologists on the results of a pilot study about heavy metal concentrations in fish in the Raritan, and had a blast with coLAB Arts and wonderful volunteers during the 2nd annual "Watershed Sculpture Project" clean-up. We've been busy planning a Halloween Fundraiser scheduled for October 29. Save the date and plan to join us for  food, drinks and an unveiling of the new sculptures as we raise funds to continue the Watershed Sculpture Project in 2016.

Please note that going forward we will meet in the Basement Meeting Room in the Middlesex County Administration Offices at 75 Bayard Street. Our next meeting will be on Tuesday September 15 when, starting at 9 AM, Rutgers Professor and Landscape Architect Richard Alomar will present on Perth Amboy's Second Street Park Project along the Raritan River waterfront. Professor Alomar's presentation will be followed at 10 AM with a workshop discussion of Rail-Arts-River, a new concept for urban arts, riverfront recapture and economic development for the LRW. We'll use this draft framing piece as a springboard for discussion.

Unlike our feathered friends we're staying put for the next few months, settling in for community outreach at festivals and other events. We welcome visitors and volunteers (see the event schedule below for details), and seek opportunities to talk about the Watershed and the LRWP with the larger watershed community. Do you know of an Environmental Commission or other group that wants to learn more about the Watershed? Let us know.

See you in the watershed!

Heather Fenyk, President Lower Raritan Watershed Partnership
PARKing Day 2015

On Friday September 18 the Lower Raritan Watershed Partnership and New Brunswick-based coLAB Arts will set up at 49 Bayard Street, New Brunswick for PARK(ing) Day 2015. PARK(ing) Day is an annual open-source global event where citizens, artists and activists collaborate to temporarily transform metered parking spaces into "PARK(ing)" spaces: temporary public places. Last year we installed a permeable paver chess board (with 3 foot chess pieces!) to highlight impervious surface reduction. This year join us as we transform trash pulled from area streams into art. The event runs from 9-4 PM.

Image credit: Heather Fenyk

Pollinator Count
During our August pollinator habitat observation we counted dozens of species of native bees, moths and flies on a walk through a local park. It was fascinating to watch these animals enjoy a late morning snack, and it didn't cost a cent to observe the differences in their body shape/design, flight patterns and behavior.

Image credit: Emma Schell

Watershed Sculpture Clean-up
We had a lot of fun with coLAB Arts artists and other volunteers gathering interesting objects for the Watershed Sculpture project. We are now looking to expand the effort and partner with other groups that conduct stream/River clean-ups in the Lower Raritan Watershed. Do you work with volunteer groups willing to help pinpoint "artistically interesting" objects found during stream/River clean-ups? We'll help with transport and storage of the items.

Image credit: Heather Fenyk

LRWP calendar

September 15 - LRWP monthly meeting, 9AM-Noon, Middlesex County Administration Basement Meeting Room, 75 Bayard Street in New Brunswick

September 18 - PARKing Day 2015! Join us as we create a "Park" in a PARKing space at 49 Bayard Street, New Brunswick, 8 AM - 5 PM. Volunteers needed!

September 20 - Highland Park Arts in the Park, on Raritan Avenue from 11 AM - 4 PM. Volunteers needed!

September 27 - Raritan River Festival, New Brunswick's Boyd Park from 12-6 PM. Volunteers needed!

October 20 - LRWP monthly meeting, 9AM-Noon, Middlesex County Administration Basement Meeting Room, 75 Bayard Street, New Brunswick

October 29 - Watershed Sculpture Project Fundraiser at the Robert Wood Johnson Fitness & Wellness Center, 6-8 PM, 100 Kirkpatrick Street, #201, New Brunswick

November 9 - PLEASE NOTE MEETING DATE AND TIME FOR NOVEMBER! Joint meeting with the Middlesex County Water Resources Association for a tour of the Middlesex County Water Utility Facility, 1:30 - 3:30 PM. 1500 Ronson Rd., Iselin, NJ  08830.

Other News and Updates

Our Central Jersey Stream Team friends have one more clean-up in the Lower Raritan Watershed this year. Join them on 9/13. If you want to pull some tires out of the river, now is your chance! E-mail CJST for more info.

Copyright © 2015 Lower Raritan Watershed Partnership, All rights reserved.

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