WATR held its Fall Meeting at a new place: the atrium of the Jackson County Library in the totally remodeled courthouse on Monday 10/7.
Roger Clapp reviewed the programs and events of the past summer and described upcoming projects. The association’s biggest accomplishment is the Stream Buffer Demonstration Trails in Monteith Farmstead Park, located in Dillsboro. The South Trail has a series of informative signs describing why a natural buffer is critically important to a health creek.
Clapp announced that WATR would be kicking off the new “River Cane Preservation & Education in the Tuckasegee Watershed” Project with a trip to the Murphy area to help harvest river cane for Native- American Crafts.  We also continue to need volunteers for Watch our Water and the Monteith Farm Park cleanup and trail building.
Colyn Petty and Blair Allman, students from Swain High’s Environmentally Aware Club, described recent events that were facilitated by WATR including field trips to investigate the endangered Appalachian Elktoe Mussel and collect macro invertebrates in Deep Creek.  Together we are planning an Eco Movie night in Bryson City and Earth Day celebrations in Swain.  If we find volunteer coordinators, WATR will work with more schools in the watershed.
The highlight of the evening was a presentation and discussion led by Dr. Dan Perlmutter.  He is spearheading an effort to develop the WADE Center – Watershed Action and Discovery Experience Center – a facility where children can explore watershed science, culture, and arts by hands-on learning.  Dan quipped that “children” means kids from the smallest to oldest adults – everyone who wants to exercise his/her childlike curiosity.  The plan is in its formative stages.  Interested in helping?  Contact Dan at 226-5745.