This past weekend was the first annual Youth Exploring Stewardship (YES) Conference. The conference was organized as a way to bring together high school aged students from the Front Range who are interested in environmental stewardship. The YES Conference was designed as a leadership experience, where youth leaders from around the Front Range can…
Did you know that for several years The Greenway Foundation has adopted two parks along the South Platte River? In the course of the year, we've hosted service programs with third graders through our SPREE program, with high school students through our Greenway Leadership Corps (GLC) youth programs, and with adults through our large and small volunteer events.
Check out how many people have been involved and how many hours have been donated to our local parks!
We still have a few more SPREE programs scheduled for this year, so our donated hours will continue to increase as the year goes on!
We also are able to work with organizations to create smaller volunteer programs throughout the year. Please contact our Volunteer and Events Director, Lauren Berent at email@example.com to learn more about creating a program.
95 people joined SPREE and Environmental Learning for Kids at our Family Fishing Day on Saturday, September 29th! Families learned the basics of fishing and casting, and then tried their luck in the pond. Most families only got some nibbles, but 2 lucky families were actually able to catch a fish! Even though the fish spent most of the day hiding; families were still able to practice make leaf art and seed bombs, learn about pollution with the Enviroscape, and eat some pizza!
A big Happy Birthday goes out to Cormac who brought his whole birthday party out to learn how to fish! And thank you for sharing your cupcakes!
Thanks to the Denver Parks and Recreation fishing program, every child who attended this event got to take their fishing pole home! Big thanks to Publication Printers and Denver Public Works for sponsoring this event, and making it possible.
To view all of the photos from the event, head over to our Facebook Page!
Over 150 people came out to our 2018 Fall South Platte Stewardship Day presented by The DaVita Village, The Nature Conservancy, and Jacobs to volunteer in several public spaces along the South Platte River. On Saturday, September 22nd, volunteers spread 30 yards of mulch to protect existing plants, and collected 10 cubic yards of trash and invasive weeds. Thank you to Snooze for providing breakfast and Kauai for providing coffee! Check out the photos from the event here! Mark your calendars for our Spring South Platte Stewardship Day, which will be on May 4th, 2019.
On the same day at Johnson Habitat Park, 70 adults and children volunteered by picking up 15 bags of trash and removing 7 bags worth of weeds. After all the hard work, families participated in games and activities with our South Platte River Environmental Education (SPREE) Team. Check out the photos from the event here! Mark your calendars for our Spring Family Stewardship Day, which will be April 22nd, 2019.
The 2018 Noble Energy on the Bridge presented by Revesco Properties and MillerCoors was a night dedicated to our urban waterways. Over 380 people came out to support The Greenway Foundation's mission! TGF also awarded the 2018 Hero of the River to The Denver Parks and Recreation River and Trails Team for their dedicated work in keeping our public spaces safe and clean. Thank you to all of the attendees and sponsors for making this event the most successful ever! Click here to view the photos on our Facebook Album.
The 2018 Blue Moon After Party on the Bridge presented by The Fang Law Firm was a big success under the big top tent! Over 450 people came to this year's circus themed event were dazzled by jugglers, silt-walkers and surprise aerial performances! Guests also enjoyed themed drink specials and food, and donated food from Fogo de Chao, and donated alcohol from Sazerac Company. The night wrapped up with silent disco and music from 3 DJs!
Click here to view the photos in our Facebook Album.
Did you miss the event this year? Buy your tickets to next year's event on September 13, 2019.
Tuesday's focus was on aquatic (or semi-aquatic) creatures. The state fish is the greenback cutthroat trout, which was once thought to be extinct in our state! It was later rediscovered and then made Colorado's state fish. Campers learned about trout habitat, and explored the River for signs that trout could live there. The state amphibian is the tiger salamander- it is found in all of Colorado's counties! We played games to help us learn about their metamorphic life cycle and how they can regrow their tails if it gets nibbled off by a predator! We also learned about their porous and slimy skin by making our own slime! The state reptile is also semi-aquatic, the painted turtle. Campers explored what it means to be cold blooded, learned the differences between terrestrial and aquatic turtles, and crafted little mini turtles to take home.
For our field day on Thursday, we went to nearby Vanderbilt park. We explored the pond and park, identified native plants and animals, and played lots of games about native Colorado animals!
Our week wrapped up with Colorado rocks and fossils. After learning the differences between rocks, minerals and gemstones, we could learn which ones are Colorado state symbols: yule marble, rhodochrosite, and aquamarine respectively. Campers learned how these rocks form, played rock bingo in the park, and made their own rock "friend" to take home. Finally, we made it to learning about our state fossil, the stegosaurus! We used silhouettes to make a skeleton, studied the natural history of Colorado dinsosaurs, and learned about dino adaptations. As always, we finished our week with a graduation ceremony!
Summer campers at the Cherry Creek Train had a fantastic week getting "inspired by nature!" On Monday, all of our nature art projects were about color. First, we made natural dyes and painted pictures with them. One set was made with plants and spices like turmeric, blueberries, and strawberries! Another we made with mud and food coloring! Another color project we worked on was swirled colors made from household objects. We made one picture with swirled colors made of vegetable oil and food coloring. Another was made with shaving cream! We wrapped up our colorful day with tie dye!
Campers enjoyed another great guest artist on Wednesday! Paul from Originateve came and worked with campers to make homemade felt from sheeps wool! Our other projects of the day were focused on making art outside and art with found materials. We made animal sculptures with items from nature, and rock mandalas near the river.
Thursday was field trip day! We trekked to the Denver Art Museum and saw many awesome pieces of art that were inspired by nature! Campers especially enjoyed making art at the many creation stations throughout the museum.
Campers brought art to life on Friday with movement and performance! We made puppets, put on a puppet show, and we made our own musical instruments! Then, we celebrated our wonderful week with a graduation ceremony!
SPREE summer campers this week became water experts during Water Engineers camp! We started by learning more about what an engineer does, and what the engineering process looks like. We did an activity to figure out the typical order of the engineering steps:
1. Identify the Problem (What do we need to do? What is our goal?)
2. Brainstorm (the most important step!)3. Design (blueprint)
4. Build (may be a model/prototype at first)
5. Test and Evaluate (Then may need to go back to step 4, until it is perfect and safe and ready-to-go! Or even go back to steps 2-3)
6. Share the Solution
Monday's focus was on many different forms of River engineering. One activity was on bridges. We learned about many types of bridges and how they work. Then, we constructed our own mini river bridges with limited materials and tested them out with different weights on top. Another river engineering feat we learned about and modeled was locks and dams. We learned about how they work, made some models, and tested them with some mini boats we built!
On Wednesday, campers learned about a different aspect of water engineering- water quality! First, we experimented with our enviroscape. An enviroscape is a model of a city that shows how pollution and runoff in cities and rural areas get into and affect waterways. Then, we made a model water filtration system using rocks, dirt, sand, and other natural materials. While not safe to drink because it was just filtered and not sanitized, we got some very cool and successful results! During our daily critter crawl, we learned more about water quality through the animals that live in the River. Did you know that different macroinvertebrates have different tolerances to pollution levels? We caught many critters and sorted them into their water-quality indicator groups. The South Platte River is home to many pollution sensitive groups! Another cool thing that campers got to do on Wednesday was work with a guest educator, who worked with them to do a scientific check up on the River. Campers did different chemical tests that help us see the health of the waterway and learned more about water quality in Denver.
Our field day took place on Thursday. The campers walked to nearby Vanderbilt Park to investigate and play! We played lots of games to beat the heat and looked for critters in River.
Friday's focus was on the "Clean River Design Challenge." Campers were tasked with putting all of their gained water engineering skills and knowlege to the test to build miniature trash removal devices for the South Platte River. This was inspired by a competition that The Greenway Foundation hosts annualy, in which college students from several Colorado universities compete to design, build, and ultimately implement their in-stream trash removal devices. Campers were thrilled to have the CRDC event coordinator as well as a member from 2018's winning team as guest speakers for the day. They brought several models from the competition with that served as inspiration for campers' designs. And, one of Greenway's board members, Sarah Dominick, who works with Denver Water, came to share her expertise with the campers as well as help build and evaluate the campers' designs!
Campers did a great job learning about and experimenting with many different aspects of water engineering this week! We wrapped up our day and week with a graduation ceremony to celebrate.
On Tuesday, the focus was on how people in Colorado use and utilize the river as a resource. We played games about irrigation, explored native and non-native plants, dug miniature reserviors, and built our own model water-treatment plants.
Field Day was on Wednesday! We went on a mini field trip to Larimer Square with our special guest, Lauren from The Greenway Foundation. She showed us a new installation of a storm water filtration device that was recently installed by The Greenway Foundation! We learned that all stormwater in Denver, regarless of what trash, debris, or even chemicals it picks up, flows into storm drains and right into waterways like the Cherry Creek without any treatment or filtration. This new storm drain helps catch trash and even chemicals and oils and prevents them from getting into Denver's waterways. We saw that the device was working when Lauren opened it up and we got to peek at all the trash inside!
Thursday and Friday were dedicated to the animals of the South Platte in Denver. On Thursday, we focused on the larger, vertebrate river dwellers. Campers acted out the lives and skills of beavers, made prints with native fish, and learned about Colorado's state fish- the Greenback Cutthroat Trout.