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Watershed Residents: ENTER TO WIN A TREE
July 30, 2015
A total of 15 trees will be made available to residents in the Upper Olentangy Watershed. Those that are interested in one of these trees will need to send their name, address, phone number, and $1.00 to OWA (PO Box 411, Delaware, Ohio 43015). 

The rules/restrictions for receiving one of these trees are:
1. The tree must be planted in October or November of 2015 in the Upper Olentangy Watershed boundaries (if you
    are unsure if you qualify please send your address to olentangyriverwatershed@gmail.com for verification PRIOR
    to submitting your entry)
2. All entries must be received by September 18th to be entered into the drawing
3. The tree cannot be planted in an easement or in the tree lawn on your property
4. The date of planting and location of tree must be given to OWA prior to the winner receiving their tree
5. One winner per household

If you win one of the trees and require assistance in planting the tree, please let us know when you are notified as a winner.

Any questions can be directed to olentangyriverwatershed@gmail.com but entries must be submitted through OWA's address: PO Box 411, Delaware, Ohio 43015. 

**Remember to include your name, complete address, phone number, and $1.00 in the envelope

2015 NOW Festival
June 23, 2015

The second annual NOW Festival was held this past Saturday, June 20th at Mingo Park. Unfortunately, the weather did not want to cooperate and the festivities were held in the Mingo gymnasium. It was funded by the City of Delaware to help educate the public on best storm water practices in their everyday lives. There were 21 booths set up by local environmental organizations, companies, and individual volunteers. These included City of Delaware, OWA, Preservation Parks of Delaware County, Delaware County Health District's Keep Delaware County Beautiful, EcoCenter in Morrow County, Army Corps of Engineers, Delaware Soil and Water Conservation District, ODNR - Division of Watercraft, ODNR - Division of Wildlife, Delaware Shade Tree Commission, DelCo Water Company, Sustainable Delaware, Izaak Walton League, Friends of the Lower Olentangy, Stratford Ecological Center, HERO USA, the Alpha Group of Delaware, MAD Scientists & Associates, and the Sierra Club. 

Several activities kept the community members busy as they learned about how water can filter pollutants out of the water, how long trash can stay in a landfill, what is in your drinking water, the scenic river's program, water safety, participated in a rain barrel raffle, learned about rain gardens, and the various other activities. It is estimated that 300-350 members of the community came to enjoy this festival.

Floating Treatment Wetlands
June 5, 2015

As many are aware, when nutrients flow into water bodies (especially pooling areas like ponds or lakes) algal blooms can form causing harmful conditions to aquatic life. Algae has the ability to produce toxins that are dangerous to organisms living in the area, such as humans, livestock, dogs, bird, etc.  It also requires oxygen to survive and can deplete the available oxygen for fish, macroinvertebrates, and other aquatic creatures. Among other harmful qualities it creates a solid layer on the surface of that waterbody, shading the sunlight and preventing aquatic vegetation from growing.

Olentangy Watershed Alliance (OWA) deployed two floating treatment wetland into ponds at Gallant Farm Preserve (Preservation Parks) and at Headwaters Outdoor Education Center (in Morrow County) to test the nutrient uptake in aquatic plants. These 8’x8’ wetland mats float on the surface of the water and suspend approximately 450 wetland plant cuttings. These cuttings will absorb some of the nutrients that accumulate in these ponds since their roots are hanging in the water. Last year OWA installed two mats that used willow, lizard’s tail, swamp rose, buttonbush, and swamp mallow. However, due to species availability, buttonbush was the only cutting available for these two mats. OWA is hopefully that this effort will help reduce the algae that sometimes appears in these ponds.

Floating treatment wetlands have been used around the world to help treat wastewater. However, using these systems to treat stormwater is a relatively new development. These mats have been used to help treat the water in Grand Lake Saint Mary’s but it was estimated that 20% of the waterbody would need to be covered with these mats to remove the amount of nutrients needed to stop the algae growth. Since the waterbodies in the Olentangy Watershed are not that nutrient-rich, to date, it is thought that one 8’x8’ mat should significantly reduce the nutrients in these smaller ponds.


Amazon Smile and Kroger's Community Rewards
June 4, 2015

SIGN-UP now for Kroger Rewards and/or Amazon Smiles
Signing up for Kroger Rewards and/or Amazon Smiles is an easy way for OWA members to support the projects of the organization.  

Amazon Smile:
We have learned that to activate the Smile credit from Amazon purchases, it is important that the buyer connect to the smile.amazon.com web page.  The easiest way to be sure that you are connected to Amazon Smile is to add the web address to your bookmarks or favorites menu bar of your web browser, e.g. Chrome, FireFox, etc. Although many of the OWA members have signed up with Amazon Smile and shop on Amazon, OWA has not received a check to date (we signed up at the beginning on 2015).  

Kroger Rewards: 
It is time for OWA members to renew their Kroger Rewards commitment to the organization. Each April Kroger clears the records for all of the Rewards accounts.  Only after the commitment is renewed will OWA receive funds from the Kroger Rewards program for this next year.           

Contact the OWA board at (olentangyriverwatershed@gmail.com or 740-203-1905) if you would like assistance signing up and/or using these programs to benefit the Olentangy Watershed Alliance.


Mt. Gilead Local Schools on a Field Trip
May 29, 2015

On May 15th, OWA helped organize a field trip for Mount Gilead seventh graders. The students traveled to the Army Corps of Engineers office on the south side of Delaware Dam. Heather Nicholson, a teacher at Mount Gilead Schools, submitted and was awarded a "Kids to Park" and "Captain Planet" grant. The Army Corps of Engineers, OWA, the seventh grade teachers from Mt. Gilead schools, and their students planned stations for the students to learn about the environment. The stations included painting rain barrels (for the NOW Festival on June 20th), installing a rain garden at the park, a nature hike with a scavenger hunt, and stream quality monitoring. Here are a few pictures of that day:



Olentangy Schools on a Field Trip
May 29, 2015

On May 5th, OWA helped with a field trip with seventh grade students from Olentangy Local School District. The Olentangy students visited Highbanks Metro Parks, in Lewis Center to learn about chemical & biological water testing, animal adaptations, primitive people, GPS/GIS orientation, and geology & erosion hike. The chemical and biological water testing was performed by Ohio Department of Natural Resources - Division of Watercraft (Scenic Rivers program), Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, and OWA's watershed coordinator, Kristin Piper. Stream Quality Monitoring uses biological samples to determine the quality of water in the local rivers. Volunteers are trained to use a specific net to catch macroinvertebrates. The trained personnel with ODNR - Division of Watercraft and Kristin Piper taught the seventh graders a method of catching these macroinvertebrates and how to identify some of them. However, several fish were caught in the process. Here are a few pictures of what was caught by the students (more can be viewed on our Facebook page):




Northern Olentangy Watershed Festival
March 4, 2015


Businesses, organizations, and/or individuals will have the opportunity to fund a rain barrel with an installation kit for $29. They will decorate the barrels themselves or can ask for someone else to paint it for them. An extra $5 will be added for businesses who do not wish to paint it themselves (to cover the cost of preparing the barrel).

These barrels will be raffled off at the Northern Olentangy Watershed Festival on June 20th at Mingo Park, in Delaware, Ohio. Proceeds will go to the Olentangy Watershed Alliance to help support the Upper Olentangy River Watershed.

Rain barrels must be ordered prior to April 15th.
Here is the form to sponsor a rain barrel Order form


The 2nd annual Northern Olentangy Watershed Conservation Awards call for nomination is now open. The City of Delaware and the NOW Festival Planning Committee recognize those in the watershed community that exemplify the true spirit of environmental stewardship and preservation in the watershed.

The NOW Conservation Awards are presented to one recipient in each of the three categories: individuals and families, local business and local government agencies living or operating within the Upper Olentangy River Watershed including Delaware, Marion, Morrow and Crawford Counties. The selection of award winners is based on the nominee’s leadership, inspiration of work to others, utilization of innovative strategies and techniques to achieve meaningful results and their ability to foster sustainable growth within the watershed community. 

If you know of an individual, local business, or governmental agency that represents these qualities, please consider filling out the nomination form and returning it to Kristin Piper. Nomination Form 

Nomination forms are due April 30th



Planting Trees to Benefit our Community
November 10, 2014


Saturday was a chilly day, but that did not scare our volunteers away!! A total of 32 volunteers dedicated an hour of their time to plant 39 trees at the Wetlands behind Glenwood Commons in Delaware. The trees included Red Oaks, Basswoods, Hackberries, Pin Oaks, Chinkapin Oaks, Bur Oaks, Swamp White Oaks, and Sycamores. Besides beautifying the area, these trees will also benefit our water and air qualities, and provide shade once mature. 



Tree Planting Event
October 6, 2014


A tree planting event has been scheduled for November 8th at the Wetlands Park behind Glenwood Commons, in the City of Delaware (Ohio). Volunteers at this event will plant trees sponsored by interested individuals/families/groups/organizations. 

There are two sizes of trees to sponsor. All are grown from local seed sources and native to Central Ohio. The 1-3 foot tree costs $15 to sponsor and the 4-6 foot tree costs $30 to sponsor. The order form is attached below and must be received by October 24th. If you or someone you know would like to help benefit our community and sponsor a tree, please contact Kristin Piper at 740-203-1905 or kpiper@delawareohio.net.



Final 2014 River Clean-up
September 29, 2014


A total of 45 people showed up to the Olentangy River clean-up on Saturday, September 27th to donate a few hours of their time and clean trash in/along the river and along the adjacent bike path. About 1000 pounds of trash was removed from these locations. Some things that were disposed of were a few tires, two bicycles, steel beams, two gallons of motor oil (in milk jugs), several glass bottles and aluminum cans, an empty propane tank, a muffler, and articles of clothing.  

THANK YOU TO ALL OF THE VOLUNTEERS THAT WERE ABLE TO DEDICATE SOME OF THEIR TIME TO THIS EVENT!!! This includes College Hunks Hauling Junk of Delaware, Ohio and Cub Scout Pack #192 of Westerville.


Delaware Run Clean-up on OWU campus
September 29, 2014

  

Thursday, September 25th five Ohio Wesleyan University students and two faculty members dedicated a little over an hour of their time to clean trash from Delaware Run, between Sandusky Street and Henry Street. Approximately 500 pounds of trash was removed from the Delaware Run by the volunteers. The trash items that were taken away included cell phones, a bicycle, several pipes, plywood, a watch, a car battery, a full can of paint, a hair dryer, and even a sink. 

THANK YOU TO THE VOLUNTEERS THAT WERE ABLE TO HELP WITH THIS PROJECT!!


11th annual Olentangy Forum
September 16, 2014

On October 16th at Del-Co Water Company, watershed and local professionals in the Olentangy Watershed will hold the 11th annual Olentangy Forum. This forum is FREE to the public and all are welcome to attend. Registration will begin at 8:00 am and presentations will begin at 9:00 am. Speakers are scheduled through 1:00 pm. The speakers for the forum include:
       Tom Curtin - presenting on Preservation Parks' initiatives in the Olentangy Watershed
       John O'Meara - updating the public about Columbus MetroParks' Olentangy Trail Expansion
       Ben O'Dell - speaking about the US Army Corps of Engineers' Delaware Dam Issues and Operations
There will also be updates from Olentangy Watershed Alliance, Friends of the Lower Olentangy Watershed, Del-Co Water Company, and Preservation Parks. 

Immediately following the presentations, lunch will be provided by Dan's Deli. Registered participants will be able to choose to tour the Olentangy Indian Caverns or canoe float down the Olentangy River. Registration is required due to limited seating but walk-ins will be welcomed if space is available. Pre-registration can be completed prior to Monday, October 13th by contacting Erin Thomas at ethomas@delcowater.com or 740-548-7746 ext. 2221. 


First 2014 River Clean-up Event was a Success!
August 27, 2014


Saturday, August 23rd was a beautiful day for a river clean-up. Volunteers met in downtown Delaware to donate a few hours of their time to clean up trash in the river. A total of three bikes, a few hub caps, several pieces of plywood, many bags of glass and plastic, and other random items were removed from the river between Winter Street and Williams Street bridges (only about a quarter mile). It is estimated that roughly 700 lbs of trash was gathered by the volunteers on Saturday. 

The next river clean-up will be on September 27th from 9-11am between the Winter Street and Central Avenue bridges. If you are interested in donating a few hours of your Saturday, please contact Kristin Piper at kpiper@delawareohio.net. A light breakfast/snack, water and drawstring backpack will be provided for volunteers that register prior to September 19th.

For those interested in attending, please remember to wear appropriate attire to the clean-ups. This includes close-toed shoes to prevent injuring your feet on possible glass or metal debris in the river and clothing that you do not mind getting dirty. Also, there is poison ivy along the banks of the river so long pants may be desired but will probably get wet due to narrow banks at certain points.

THANK YOU TO ALL OF THE VOLUNTEERS THAT WERE ABLE TO DEDICATE SOME OF THEIR TIME TO THIS EVENT!!! This includes Del-Co Water Company and Boy Scout Troop #249 of Delaware.


Two River Clean-ups in Delaware
August 6, 2014


Two river clean-up events have been scheduled for the next few months: August 23rd, from 9-11am, in the river from Winter Street to William Street bridges (meet in the old gas/service station parking lot next to the Eagles lodge on Williams Street). September 27th,  9-11am, in the river from Central Ave. to Winter Street bridges (meet in the old gas station parking lot next to the Eagles lodge on Williams Street). The rain date will be the Saturday following the clean-up date, August 30th and October 4th.

A light breakfast/snack, water and drawstring backpack will be provided for volunteers that register in advance. The deadline for registration is August 15th  for the August 23rd clean-up and September 19th for the September 27th clean-up. To register, please contact Kristin Piper at kpiper@delawareohio.net with the name of responsible adult for the group/family, number of adults and children per group/family, and contact information.

For those interested in attending, please remember to wear appropriate attire to the clean-ups. This includes close-toed shoes to prevent injuring your feet on possible glass or metal debris in the river and clothing that you do not mind getting dirty. Also, there is poison ivy along the banks of the river so long pants may be desired but will probably get wet due to narrow banks at certain points.


Northern Olentangy Watershed Festival
July 29, 2014


The first annual Northern Olentangy Watershed Festival was held on June 21st at Mingo Park in Delaware. The festival was funded by the Ohio EPA and the City of Delaware to help educate the public on best storm water practices in their everyday lives. Several partnering agencies and local volunteers assisted with the festival, making it a great success. The partnering organizations included OWA, City of Delaware, Preservation Parks of Delaware County, Delaware County Health District's Keep Delaware County Beautiful, EcoCenter in Morrow County, River Network, Marion County Red Cross, Army Corps of Engineers, Urban Wild, Delaware Soil and Water Conservation District, ODNR - Division of Watercraft, ODNR - Division of Wildlife, Delaware Shade Tree Commission, DelCo Water Company, Sustainable Delaware, Izaak Walton League, Friends of the Lower Olentangy, and the Sierra Club. 

Several activities kept the community members busy as they learned about how water can filter pollutants out of the water, how long trash can stay in a landfill, what is in your drinking water, the scenic river's program, water safety, participated in a rain barrel raffle, helped install a rain garden, and the various other activities. It is estimated that 350-400 members of the community came to enjoy this festival.