Cottonwood AZ (August 29, 2019) – Friends of the Verde River is excited to announce the 2019 State of the Verde Watershed Conference to be held at the Cliff Castle Casino Hotel, October 28 -30, 2019. The three-day conference begins with your choice of eleven different field trip options happening throughout the valley, including a guided tour of the Wild and Scenic Fossil Creek, Discovering Tavasci Marsh, Watchable Wildlife at Page Springs, and a kayak trip on the Verde River. The second and third days are filled with sessions, panelists, and speakers addressing topics related to the Watershed Report Card outcomes, such as water quality and quantity, recreation, upland, riparian, and aquatic habitat.
A welcome by Friends Board President, Chip Norton, and Jane Russell-Winiecki, past Chairwoman, Yavapai-Apache Nation opens day two followed by keynote speakers, Commissioner Lisa Atkins, Arizona Lands Department and Dr. Bill Dennison, Professor of Marine Science and Vice President for Science Applications at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science (UMCES). Day three continues with watershed topics in plenary session.
The Conference is based on the results of the Verde Watershed Report Card. In 2018, Friends, in partnership with The Nature Conservancy and the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, with funding from US Forest Service, initiated the development of a Watershed Report Card to define and measure the condition (status and trends) of the Verde watershed. The results of the Watershed Report Card will be presented at the 2019 State of the Watershed Conference.
Over the last two years, stakeholders came together in workshops and small groups to conceptualize the watershed, create a shared vision, and discuss indicators for the Verde Watershed Report Card. Report cards report on the health of watersheds based on evaluation of a set of scientifically-derived indicators and thresholds.
This conference is for anyone who cares about water in Arizona and wants to learn about the health of the Verde Watershed. Early discounted registration opens online, Friday, August 30, 2019. The first State of the Watershed Conference was presented in 2017 in Clarkdale, AZ and focused on providing experiences through workshops, presentations, and discussion to address habitat, flow, sustainable outdoor recreation opportunities, and critical watershed issues.
Visit https://verderiver.org/state-of-the-watershed-conference/ for more information.