The public is invited to the 15th Annual Celebration of the Dan River Basin Association (DRBA) at the Virginia Museum of Natural History in Martinsville, on Saturday, March 4.
Beginning at 9:30 a.m. with refreshments and displays, the celebration will feature renowned scientist Andrew Dolloff, fishery research biologist at the Center for Forest Watershed Research, who will share surprising information about our rivers’ inhabitants.
Based at Virginia Tech, Dolloff conducts research on stream ecology, watershed and riparian management, and forestry and fishery interactions. He is interested in how river inhabitants are influenced by natural- and human-related disturbances, climate change, forestry practices, and dam and reservoir operations.
The celebration is free and includes “Hellbenders,” a brief award-winning film; highlights of DRBA’s accomplishments in 2016; a preview of the organization’s 2017 activities; and an after-lunch guided hike.
A short business session will include recognition of extraordinary volunteer service and election of board members.
The day’s activities will reflect DRBA’s mission: preserving and promoting the region’s rivers and culture through education, recreation, stewardship, and regional identity.
Encompassing portions of 16 counties in Virginia and North Carolina in its 3,300-square-mile watershed, the Dan River Basin includes six rivers: the Mayo, Smith, Sandy, Banister, Hyco and, of course, the Dan. DRBA was formed in 2002 to preserve and promote the region’s abundant natural and cultural resources.
Recognizing that this beautiful area shares a history of reliance on the rivers for drinking water, transportation, commerce, and industry, DRBA strives to provide a unified vision of cooperation across geographic boundaries.
Attendees may bring a picnic lunch to eat at the museum or dine at a local restaurant of their choosing (map available at welcome table).
After lunch, all are invited to hike with local guide Paul Johnson, a long-time DRBA leader. Hikers may choose a short trek at Wilson Park behind the museum, or a two-mile walk on the Silverbells Trail and the Uptown Connector. Those joining in the after-lunch hike should wear hiking boots or walking shoes, dress in layers, and be prepared to sign a waiver.