RAMAPO RIVER DAY - June 2018
Children's Ecological Education Day
For more more than 15 years, EJTU members and staff from Ramapo College have gathered on the banks of the Ramapo River in Mahwah to conduct Ramapo River Day. This early June event draws young people from surrounding communities and local cities. It's particularly rewarding to get kids from the inner-city involved because they rarely have the chance to experience events like this.
East Jersey Trout Unlimited and Educators from Ramapo College invite you to attend Ramapo River Day, our annual environmental education program. Participants will learn about things that live in and near the river, conduct water chemistry experiments, learn about nonpoint source pollution, fly tying and fly casting.
Halifax Road at The Ramapo River
The program is free but registration is required.
Contact Rich Malizia at firstname.lastname@example.org or 973-304-0789.
Participants are grouped by age into groups of 10 – 15 and tour six activity stations:
Collection: Participants are given cups and tweezers to collect specimens obtained from seines right in the river. Our volunteers handle the seines so participants need not get into the water, but they do get a chance to see all the cool critters living in the Ramapo.
Identification: Using microscopes and reference books, participants identify the specimens they have collected with the guidance of Ramapo College staff.
Water Chemistry: Participants conduct cool chemistry experiments designed by Ramapo College staff with water right from the river. This gives them the chance to see and evaluate Ramapo River water quality first hand.
Botany: College staff leads participants on a short walk to identify the vegetation that grows along the river. Participants learn about native, invasive, helpful and harmful plants that are all a part of the river ecosystem.
Non-point Source Pollution: Using models designed to demonstrate pollution problems, participants learn about pollution caused by indirect sources - like pet waste, lawn and garden products, trash, and chemicals that leak from vehicles. Here they learn how simple things in our daily lives affect the quality of our rivers and streams.
Fly Tying and Fly Casting: EJTU volunteers demonstrate how to tie flies which imitate the critters the participants examined at the Collection station. Participants then have a chance to learn to try their hand at fly casting with a rod and reel.
This is truly a hands-on event. The kids get their hands dirty touching bugs they might never otherwise consider - all while learning the need to be responsible environmental stewards. The event is certainly worth giving up a day of fishing to see the look on participant faces when they find their first caddis pupa, mayfly nymph, or crayfish.