Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Year's End Clean-up December 26

Haven't met your goal for stewardship activities for 2020, or maybe you're looking for a break from the couch, video calls, and binge-watching holiday baking shows? Spread holiday cheer and take in the brisk air at our last litter clean-up event this year at Four Mile Run! We will meet at 11:00 a.m. at the west entrance parking area at Four Mile Run Park, 4131 Mount Vernon Avenue.


Note: as a COVID-19 precaution, event is limited to 10 participants. Face masks and social distancing of a minimum 6 feet are required.

Our project to create an ADA-accessible water access point--a floating dock for launching non-motorized watercraft--is underway! The fundraising goal of $16,000 toward the engineering design, to be matched by Alexandria's RPCA Community Matching Fund, has been met, and we have hired the engineering firm RK&K. We anticipate the design and permitting work taking place over the next several months. Once that is completed, we will pursue additional funding opportunities for project construction, and we look forward to posting updates as the project continues.

Wishing you good health, and happy holidays, and we hope to see you out at Four Mile Run in 2021!

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Giving Tuesday 2020

Today is Giving Tuesday, a worldwide celebration of generosity, and an opportunity to support the work of the non-profits that strengthen our communities and improve our world. Make sure part of your giving today supports an organization that you feel makes a difference in the local community. If you choose to support the Four Mile Run Conservatory Foundation's mission, you can donate directly via the link above, or shop/dine at local businesses participating in the Old Town Business Association's Giving Tuesday, through which a percentage of today's sales goes toward our work.

Monday, November 23, 2020

Reflecting with Gratitude

River NEAR exploring the marsh
As Thanksgiving approaches, I would like to take a moment to acknowledge and thank those who have made our program year a success, even in the face of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Thank you to the many volunteers that have removed litter from the park and the water, planted native plants, and helped lead youth programs and community outreach. In particular, we appreciated the volunteer efforts put forth by Arlington Regional Master Naturalists and the Tree Stewards of Arlington and Alexandria.

Volunteers plant native shrubs
Thank you also to the grant funders who supported our work this year: to the Greater Washington Community Foundation and its Spring Creek Environmental and Preservation Fund for operating support that boosted our summer internship program and upcoming field station project; to Virginia American Water for enabling the weekly pop-up nature center earlier this fall; to Dominion Energy for robust support of our Nature Explorers And Restorers (NEAR) program providing neighborhood youth with opportunities to learn and live in their nearby nature; and to River Network and the National Park Service for providing the resources needed for us to offer youth on-water programming (River NEAR).

Summer interns at work
We are grateful for the positive working relationships we enjoy with the Alexandria Department of Recreation, Parks, and Cultural Activities, with Arlington County's Parks and Natural Resources Division, and we were pleased to work with the Alexandria Workforce Development Center and Georgetown Day School  to host a talented cohort of high school summer interns.

Pop-up nature center visitors
All that we've accomplished during the pandemic has been possible thanks to the broad community support we have received through your time, donations, likes/shares on social media, and word of mouth. And we are honored to have been chosen as one of five local organizations being supported by the Old Town Business Association on Giving Tuesday--see details here on how you can support the Four Mile Run Conservatory Foundation while you shop and dine in Old Town Alexandria on Tuesday, December 1!

Happy Thanksgiving, and I hope to see you out along the Run this winter.

Kurt Moser, President

Above right: River NEAR participants explore the interior marsh; volunteers plant native shrubs; summer interns at work; pop-up nature center visitors learn about microplastics. Below: catching a bluegill with NEAR.

Catching a bluegill with NEAR