Looking at all the snow, it should be a great paddling season with plenty of water for our rivers and streams. I know it seems just like yesterday, but the time to prepare for this year’s Little Calumet River cleanup is here again. Our first meeting for 2014 will be on March 1 at 9:00am at the Blue Island Public Library, 2433 York Street. I anticipate that this will be the best one yet as I know a lot of people have been promoting our hidden gem. Matter of fact, there is a new Water Trail Map that has been printed that we will share with everyone at the meeting.
Please RSVP and let us know you are coming. The clean up is June 7th, so put it in your calendar and spread the word. Yes, we will be doing a land clean up as well for you land lovers.
If you’re new to the Little Calumet River – or a big fan like us! – we hope to see you at Little Calumet Boat Launch Preserve this Saturday, September 28 for our River Tour and Clean Up.
Enjoy group talks about the history and ecology of the area before launching to experience our waterway heritage firsthand. Check for bird species, natural habitat features and the impact of our built environment as we paddle from the Boat Launch to Kickapoo Meadows where we’ll find volunteers on hand restoring the landscape.
We’re excited to unite our many partners on Public Lands Day and offer this unique opportunity to enjoy the Little Calumet River.
Tom Eckels – partner and friend of Calumet Waterway Stewards – has just been announced as a 2013 recipient of the prestigious American Canoe Association Green Paddle for Waterway Conservation Award. Way to go, Tom!
Each year the ACA recognizes a select group of individuals and organizations who have illustrated exemplary leadership, service, and dedication to various aspects of paddlesport. The Green Paddle for Waterway Conservation Award is presented annually to an individual or a group that has made an outstanding contribution to paddlesport by protecting America’s waterways.
Tom has been the voice of Illinois Water TrailKeepers, a program of the Illinois Paddling Council and Openlands, while also serving as the secretary for the IPC. He has encouraged, organized, coordinated, directed, led and reported on countless cleanup and conservation projects throughout northeast Illinois. He will be recognized at the ACA’s annual banquet and awards ceremony in Bend, Oregon on September 28. Please join fellow paddlers from across the country in acknowledging this achievement!
Posted in News
Tagged ACA, Green Paddle, IPC
Learn about the ecology and history of the Little Calumet River as we paddle and clean the Little Calumet River on Saturday, September 28 in celebration of National Public Lands Day.
We’ll paddle from the Little Calumet Boat Launch Preserve in Riverdale, IL to Kickapoo Meadows in Harvey and back again. Meet at the Little Calumet Boat Launch. Paddle at your own pace. We’ll have supplies to help clean up the river too (tools, bags, and gloves provided) – or get involved with Crowdsourcing the Calumet!
Bring your canoes or kayaks if possible. There are a limited number of canoes and kayaks that can be loaned for free to those without boats. Register here.
Illinois Paddling Council founder Ralph Frese will have the street next to the Canoe Base named “The Ralph Frese Honorary Way” by the City of Chicago. The ceremony will take place on September 21st at 2:00pm at the site next to The Canoe Base, 4019 Narragansett, Chicago.
We invite all paddlers to attend this last tribute to Ralph by the city he loved. A number of dignitarys will be there. Details as they become available on the Illinois Paddling Council site.
When faced with water levels too high to safely paddle, volunteers did what volunteers do: found another spot and jumped in! Whistler Woods was added to the day’s events and a crew from Larry Hawkins charter school picked up along the Cal-Sag Channel and the Major Taylor bike trail.
Over 30 volunteers were out helping at Whistler and Calumet Woods Boat Ramp. Wish you were there? The Times of Northwest Indiana included a feature and you can check out photos on our flickr page.
Many thanks to REI for the tshirts and bars, and to Forest Preserve District of Cook County for the facilities and support.
The Times of Northwest Indiana has helped spread the word, letting people know that volunteers are needed for Little Calumet River cleanup.
Our June 1st cleanup day offers volunteers two opportunities to get involved. Paddlers launch from Gouwens Park in South Holland and help clean the river along the way to Calumet Woods, where they meet up with volunteers working along the river’s edge.
Please register for either effort to ensure we have enough supplies for all of our volunteers. Looking forward to seeing you on the 1st!
Are you ready to “jump in” and help clean the Little Calumet River? We’re excitedly looking forward to our 2013 cleanup event. Are you registered? You can do that now, here.
Please let us know if you intend to help on land or in the water. We have a limited number of free loaner boats available so if you want to get wet tell us now so you’re not left at shore!
We are supporting the Friends of the Chicago River’s annual Chicago River Day, which celebrates all of our area waterways. Volunteers come together annually to cleanup the riverbanks. Once again in Blue Island you’ll find us along the Cal-Sag Channel at Anne Street cleaning trash and clearing invasive brush.
Chicago River Day is Saturday, May 11, 2013 from 9am to noon.
Founder of the Illinois Paddling Council, friend of the Calumet Waterway Stewards and paddlers everywhere, Ralph Frese passed away in December 2012. The annual tradition of paddling the water trail named in his honor, The Ralph Frese River Trail, lives on. Bring your canoe or kayak and celebrate Ralph’s legacy on Sunday, April 14.
The Memorial Paddle will begin at 10:00 am with a short ceremony preceding a paddle on the Ralph Frese River Trail on the North Branch of the Chicago River from Willow Road to Linne Woods on Dempster in Skokie. An Empty Canoe ceremony will be conducted in which one of Ralph’s boats will make his symbolic last paddle as it is towed by Voyageurs on Ralph’s favorite canoe trail. All participants will receive a commemorative Mr. Canoe button.
Boat Launch from 10:00-noon at the Willow Road dam (Willow Road and Forest Way Drive in Winnetka). This trip is best for experienced paddlers. Please visit the Illinois Paddling Council webpage for their canoe and kayak safety checklist.