Upper Missisquoi & Trout Rivers Celebration on June 6, 2015

On June 6, 2015, community members and partner groups will celebrate the designation of the Upper Missisquoi and Wild and Scenic event posterTrout rivers as National Wild and Scenic Rivers. Forty other states have rivers listed under the Wild and Scenic Rivers System yet these are Vermont’s first to be given this prestigious recognition.

Congressman Peter Welch and spokespersons for Senator Leahy, Senator Sanders, and the National Park Service will be joining community members to offer remarks during the designation ceremony at The Abbey in Sheldon, Vermont alongside the Missisquoi River with a spectacular vista of Vermont’s Green Mountains.

“The Missisquoi and Trout rivers are remarkable natural and cultural resources. This important designation will ensure future generations of Vermonters will enjoy these natural treasures,” says Congressman Peter Welch.

Designation under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act protects the natural, cultural and recreational qualities of the Upper Missisquoi and Trout rivers, providing support for local efforts to increase recreational access and enabling continued enjoyment by fishermen, hunters and paddlers.

“Local volunteers worked for more than five years on the study that identified the incredible values of the Missisquoi and Trout rivers necessary to achieve this designation,” said Shana Stewart Deeds, coordinator of the Upper Missisquoi and Trout Rivers Wild and Scenic Committee. “We are proud of the natural, historical and recreational resources for which these rivers were designated, and pleased to have this national recognition. Our committee looks forward to continuing to providing a reliable forum for discussion, research, and consensus building around river matters, and supporting good river management.”

The ceremony will take place 11am–2pm with speakers, live music and complimentary refreshments. More than 25 exhibitors will share information about the rivers and natural landscapes of the region including Upper Missisquoi and Trout Rivers Wild and Scenic Committee, Missisquoi River Basin Association, Franklin Watershed Alliance, Friends of Northern Lake Champlain, Lake Champlain Basin Program, Northwest Regional Planning Commission of Vermont, Missisquoi Valley Rail Trail, Northern Forest Canoe Trail, National Park Service, American Canoe Association, Winter Center for Indigenous Traditions, Farmers Watershed Alliance, Richford Conservation Council, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Services.

Vermont’s bluegrass Missisquoi River Band including the Enosburgh-based songwriting trio of Patrick Murphy and Jim and Cindy Weed will provide live music.

Vermont food products, including Boston Post Dairy, Cold Hollow Cider Mill, Couture’s Maple Shop, Foggy Brook Farm, Hannaford, Howmars Farm, Keurig Green Mountain and Maggie T’s, will be presented by The Abbey.

From 2:30pm–4:30pm there will be an easy, 6-mile paddling trip hosted by Northern Forest Canoe Trail in honor of the designation and the organization’s 15th anniversary on the Missisquoi River from Davis Park in Richford to the confluence of the Trout River in East Berkshire. Participants must arrange their own transportation and provide their own boat, paddle and PFD.

“Northern Forest Canoe Trail has worked in partnership with communities along the Missisquoi River since 2000 to improve access to recreational paddling for locals and visitors alike. This national recognition is a great achievement for all of us in the watershed in sharing the story of the natural and recreational resources in the region with a national audience,” commented Karrie Thomas, executive director of the Northern Forest Canoe Trail.

This event is hosted by the Upper Missisquoi and Trout Rivers Wild & Scenic Committee, Missisquoi River Basin Association, Northeast Regional Planning Association, and Northern Forest Canoe Trail. See a poster for the event at www.northernforestcanoetrail.org/media/VTWildScenicCelebration2015.pdf.

This event is free and the public is welcome to attend. This is one of many events, paddling trips, and a speaker series scheduled for locations along Vermont’s Missisquoi River this summer. See more at www.celebratethemissisquoi.com.


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