Thanks, Sweet William Billy Ennis, for winning last year and returning this year to headline the Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest.
Hahira, Georgia, August 22, 2022 — Everyone had a good time, it was a successful fundraiser for WWALS, and here are the winners of the Fifth Annual Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest.
The winners were chosen by judges J.J. Rolle, Kenji Bolden, and Joe Smothers. Continue reading
Bird Chamberlain and others had been suggesting it for years, and we finally did it: the Alapahoochee River from GA 135 to Sasser Landing on the Alapaha River. We paddled over many deadfalls, across the GA-FL line, past the creek of shark teeth, under old abandoned steel Beatty Bridge, through Devil Shoal, right by Turket Creek Waterfall.
Many thanks to Bobby McKenzie for organizing this expedition, to the WWALS Outings Committee for planning it, and to all who paddled, including Suzanne Welander, author of Canoeing and Kayaking Georgia, who came down from Atlanta for this outing. Continue reading
We livestreamed the Fourth Annual Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest over facebook live and zoom. This is the zoom video, for those who want to see how the whole thing went.
Yep, this is the whole thing, from soundcheck to teardown. In between, headliner Little Perks in Paradise plays, three judges perform as a band, then nine finalists perform for the judges, the judges pick winners, and the First Prize winner, Sweet William Billy Ennis, sings again.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Hahira, GA, August 23, 2021 — Chosen by three judges from a record number of Finalists from Atlanta to Palatka, WWALS Watershed Coalition, Inc. (WWALS) is pleased to announce the winners of the Fourth Annual Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest.
L-R: KJ Wingate, Katherine Ball, David Rodock, Sweet William Billy Ennis, Jimi Davies and his brother, Kathy Lou Gilman, Rachel Hillman.
Photo: Angela Duncan for WWALS.
The winner of Continue reading
Good turnout for a Thursday paddle! 26 paddlers enjoyed great weather, bats, and the Full Strawberry Moon through clouds at Banks Lake NWR.
Each full moon, it’s only $10 per paddler with free boat rental thanks to the Lakeland-Lanier Chamber of Commerce and Banks Lake Outdoors. Or the whole thing is free with WWALS membership, which starts at $25 individual or $40 family.
This time we were joined by Bird Chamberlain and almost all of Dirty Bird and the Flu, one of our headliners at the Fourth Annual Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest, 7-11 PM, Saturday, August 21, 2021, at the Turner Center Art Park, Valdosta, GA. Continue reading
Fannie Gibbs of Macedonia Community Foundation invited WWALS to their Juneteenth celebration at Reed Bingham State Park Lake. So we took boats and volunteers and got people in boats on the lake.
Including Fannie, in a boat, with a paddle, in the rain!
Thanks especially to Fannie Gibbs for inviting WWALS. We will keep writing joint grant proposals until we get some funded for boating and swimming lessons, historical research, and paddle outings designed around African-American waterway history. Meanwhile, we will keep doing things like this anyway. Continue reading
Update 2021-02-01: Bad State Line, Withlacoochee River 2021-01-30.
Best avoid the Withlacoochee River for a few days. It rained more Wednesday than last Friday, and this time something definitely washed into the river, confirmed Thursday by both WWALS testers Josh and Angela Duncan and by Madison Health, published by FDEP. Madison and Hamilton Health have published a health advisory for the Withlacoochee River.
Given that more rain is expected Sunday, it might be prudent to stay off the river until sunny next week. Continue reading
Friday results by Madison Health and Saturday results by WWALS testers Michael and Jacob Bachrach show much improved Withlacoochee River Water Quality, from Nankin Boat Ramp through State Line Boat Ramp and Sullivan Launch down to FL 6.
Madison and Hamilton County Health Departments will probably wait until they get another good result of their own, probably for today or tomorrow, before they lift their health advisory.
However, WWALS already sees two good results in a row, so happy boating, swimming, and fishing on the Withlacoochee River!
We have no new Alapaha River results since the clean WWALS result for Sasser Landing Wednesday, but since there’s been no significant rain since then, the Alapaha is also probably clean for swimming, fishing, and boating.
We have no new results from Valdosta since Monday a week ago, when all of three upstream locations were still bad. Chances are those locations have also cleared up, but we don’t know. Continue reading
Update 2021-01-11: Much better Withlacoochee River water quality 2021-01-09.
The latest Withlacoochee River results still show mostly bad water quality, surprisingly good at the State Line on Wednesday, but bad downstream. The Madison and Hamilton County Health advisory for the Withlacoochee River is still in place.
However, Sasser Landing on the Alapaha River tested OK for Wednesday.
The Madison Health Wednesday tests were not as horrible as for Tuesday, but they still got too high at Sullivan Launch (CR 150) and FL 6. Some of that could be from the Quitman or Tifton sewage spills, but probably most of it is from Continue reading