Tag Archives: PR

Video: Titanium strip mine too near Okefenokee Swamp; Suwannee Riverkeeper on Scott James Radio 2021-10-18

That titanium strip mine too near the Okefenokee Swamp is still in permitting, as Scott James and I discussed on his radio show Monday morning; here’s video. You can help stop that mine.

There’s serious doubt about the legitimacy of the decision last October by the Army Corps of Engineers to abdicate responsibility, since a District Court revoked last year’s EPA decision that the Corps used to decide. Meanwhile, the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (GA-EPD) has five permit applications from those Alabama coal miners, Twin Pines Minerals LLC. For details, see Mining moratorium: NWPR WOTUS and Army Corps on Okefenokee mine site –WWALS to EPD 2021-09-27.

[Strip mine discussion and location]
Strip mine discussion and location

You can ask GA-EPD for a moratorium on all mining, until the effects of that District Court decision get sorted out, or to deny the permits for that mine, or at the very least to examine the permits very thoroughly and produce the equivalent of the Environmental Impact Statement that the Corps should be working on.
https://wwals.net/?p=55092

And don’t forget the WWALS Boomerang paddle race tomorrow morning, Saturday, October 23, 2021, from Georgia into Florida and back!
https://wwals.net/pictures/2021-10-23–boomerang/

Here’s WWALS video of that radio discussion: Continue reading

Videos: Boomerang paddle race, mine too close to Okefenokee Swamp, Suwannee Riverkeeper on Scott James Radio 2021-10-19

On his radio show Monday morning, Scott James and I talked about the WWALS Boomerang paddle race, coming up this Saturday, 9AM, October 23, 2021, at State Line Boat Ramp, aka Madison Highway Boat Ramp or Mozell Spells or GA 31 Ramp or CR 145 Bridge Launch. We’ll paddle downstream into Florida and back up into Georgia! Food, drink, and a silent auction. Fun for the whole family.

The overall winner wins a $100 First Prize. Others will win in many categories.

[Radio, WWALS Boomerang paddle race]
Radio, WWALS Boomerang paddle race

Tickets for this WWALS fundraiser are available online or at the event.
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/wwals-boomerang-paddle-race-2021-tickets-168646372841

Registration opens at 9AM, where you can say whether you want to paddle 1, 2, or 3 miles downstream, and the same back up.

Everything about the Boomerang is here:
https://wwals.net/pictures/2021-10-23–boomerang/

Below are links to each of the video segments about the Boomerang on the radio, followed by a WWALS video playlist. Continue reading

A trash source success: parking lot on St. Augustine Road, Valdosta

Valdosta, GA, October 7, 2021 — Other businesses can do what Stafford did, and our creeks and rivers will be a lot cleaner! That will make Valdosta, Lowndes County, and every place downstream, more attractive to new and existing businesses, and healthier for people who live here.

After many times cleaning up trash from Sugar Creek near the Withlacoochee River, WWALS member Bobby McKenzie went upstream in Valdosta, found some sources, and one of the big ones listened. Other businesses can follow this example: put trash cans in parking lots, empty them, and keep them swept.

[Parking lot, Hightower Creek]
Parking lot, Hightower Creek

Bobby tells the story:

We identified hundreds of pounds of trash being thrown into the tree line just feet from Hightower Creek. The parking lot owner is Valdosta Mall Corners c/o Stafford Development Company (Stafford). Continue reading

Winners: Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest 2021-08-21

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.

[All winners]
All winners.
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

Video: Banks Lake Full Sturgeon Moon Paddle 2021-08-22 –Suwannee Riverkeeper & Scott James 2021-08-12

This Sunday, paddle out with us to see the sun set and the moon rise, with bats, in the Banks Lake Full Sturgeon Moon Paddle!

It’s only $10 for non-members, and free to non-members, as Scott James reminded us on his radio show last week.

With free boat rental, thanks to the Lakeland-Lanier County Chamber of Commerce.

And WWALS membership is only $25 for individuals or $40 for a family.
https://wwals.net/donations/#join

[Banks Lake Full Sturgeon Moon Paddle]
Banks Lake Full Sturgeon Moon Paddle

For more details of this evening paddle just west of Lakeland, Georgia, see: https://wwals.net/?p=56344

Here’s WWALS video of that radio interview: Continue reading

Suwannee Riverkeeper contest scheduled –Valdosta Daily Times 2021-08-02

Amanda M. Usher, Valdosta Daily Times, August 2, 2021, Suwannee Riverkeeper contest scheduled,

VALDOSTA — The musical notes of folk, blues, soul, rock and jazz will soon cover the Art Park during the Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest in late August.

Finalists have been selected to perform at the annual event, 7-11 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 21, at the Annette Howell Turner Center for the Arts Art Park.

The public had until July 29 to cast votes for the contest.

John Quarterman, Suwannee riverkeeper, said a committee will take into account the votes while choosing finalists, which will be announced Aug. 4.

And the Committee selected all nine songwriters as Finaliasts!

[Nine Songwriters, Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest 2021]

Judges Josh Duncan, J.J. Rolle and Kenji Bolden will select winners at the Aug. 21 event, where Little Perks in Paradise and Dirty Bird and the Flu will each headline.

Little Perks in Paradise features Continue reading

WWALS Watershed Coalition thanks Atkinson Commission for support –WFXL TV 2021-07-09

Alapaha River Water Trail and GA-EPD Recreational redesignation of the Alapaha River at Atkinson County Commission last Thursday made the news.

Typhani Gray, Fox 31 WFXL, 9 July 2021, WWALS Watershed Coalition thanks Atkinson Commission for support,

[Willacoochee Landing @ GA 135, Alapaha River Water Trail, Suwannee Riverkeeper at Atkinson County Commission, Reporter Typhani Gray and Tester Valerie Folsom, ARWT road sign]
Willacoochee Landing @ GA 135, Alapaha River Water Trail, Suwannee Riverkeeper at Atkinson County Commission, Reporter Typhani Gray and Tester Valerie Folsom, ARWT road sign

WWALS Watershed Coalition was started after organizers were concerned about sewage spills, and roads being closed because of trees being down in the river.

Most of that was in the Withlacoochee River around 2009, but the Alapaha River did have water quality issues back then.

The organization came to the Atkinson County Board of Commissioners to thank them for the Alapaha River Water Trail contribution.

In 2018 commissions passed a resolution supporting the water trail.

Here is that Atkinson County Commission resolution of 18 January 2018 supporting the Alapaha River Water Trail.

This trail runs for more than 100 miles on the Alapaha River all the way down to Florida.

Atkinson County has one landing on Georgia 135 that’s called Willacoochee [Landing].

According to John Quarterman, the Watershed Coalition has expanded its organization and is now tests waters to make it safer for people to swim and fish.

Valerie Folsom, who tests in Atkinson County at Willacoochee Landing @ GA 135, also spoke to the Atkinson County Commission about the latest test results. Continue reading

Pop-up Paddle, Okefenokee Swamp, and Songwriting Contest on Scott James radio 2021-05-11

Update 2021-05-14: There’s good water quality news upstream for tomorrow’s Withlacoochee River paddle from Langdale Park Boat Ramp to Sugar Creek and the Salty Snapper. Not so good downstream.

The Salty Snapper pop-up paddle this Saturday may be a bit truncated, due to water levels getting low. We may paddle only from Langdale Park Boat Ramp to the Salty Snapper, because the second leg on to Troupville Boat Ramp is getting too low. Expedition leader Bobby McKenzie will post updates on the facebook event and the meetup, and we’ll blog final status before the paddle. Bobby’s out paddling the route right now.
https://www.facebook.com/events/1136633426809951/
https://www.meetup.com/Withlacoochee-Alapaha-Suwannee-RIvers-WWALS-Outings/events/278008951/

Follow this link for other details on this outing:
https://wwals.net/?p=55532

Looks like you can shuttle by scheduling with the new Valdosta on-demand minibus transit service for a $2 ride back from the Salty Snapper to Langdale Park Boat Ramp.
https://www.valdostacity.com/public-works/valdosta-demand

[Movie: Pop-up paddle, no fee, at Langdale Park, Saturday, 2021-05-15]

Tuesday morning, Suwannee Riverkeeper was talking about this paddle with Scott James on his 92.1 FM radio show.

Here’s a WWALS video playlist:

Continue reading

No fooling: Song submissions are open, Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest 2021

Hahira, Georgia, April 1, 2021 — You can send in your song now, April 1 (no fooling) through July 7, 2021, for the Fourth Annual Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest, with a $300 cash First Prize, plus one day of recording studio time.

[Entry form banner]
Use the entry form to send in your song.

In addition to the First Prize, there will also be two $50 prizes, one each for best song from inside the Suwannee River Basin, and best song from outside. Plus plaques to winners in each musical genre.

The studio time is new this year. Also new this year, we will have online voting for finalists. The Contest Committee will take those votes into account when selecting finalists.

The Finals will be at the Turner Center for the Arts in Valdosta, Georgia, 7-10 PM, Saturday, August 22, 2021. Tickets for $10 will be available online soon, or $12 at the door. Headliners play, and three judges will each play a song themselves.

There will be food, cash bar, silent auction, and a kayak raffle. There will be brief talks about outings and advocacy, so you can know what your money is going to, in this fundraiser for WWALS Watershed Coalition, Inc. Sponsors will speak, and any elected officials present; briefly, of course.

Everyone will listen to the finalists, as the judges select winners.

“Georgia Beer Co. is back as our top-tier sponsor, which helps us get these new songs about our rivers, swamps, springs, and sinks,” said Suwannee Riverkeeper John S. Quarterman. “Brian Blount of WKUB asked me to talk about the Suwannee Riverkeeper Songwriting Contest on 105.1 FM.”

Here is that radio interview: Continue reading

WWALS booth at Azalea Festival, Valdosta, GA 2021-03-13-14

Come back to Drexel Park to help WWALS celebrate spring with 30,000 of our south Georgia and north Florida friends, at the Azalea Festival in Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia. We will have information about our outings and advocacy (yes, including Valdosta wastewater), the new Water Trail brochures, and pictures for sale Gretchen took of our rivers, plus a kayak raffle.

Things will be a little different this year: “The Azalea Festival is a 100% all outdoor event. Patrons are encouraged to socially distance and wear masks.”

When: 10AM-6PM Saturday 13 March 2021
10AM-3:30PM Sunday 14 March 2021

Volunteer: If you are a WWALS member and you have had both vaccinations against COVID-19, we could use some help at the WWALS booth.

Where: Drexel Park, 1401 North Patterson Street, Valdosta, GA, 31601
30.846771, -83.285066
That’s east across Patterson from VSU and north of Brookwood Drive.
It is on One Mile Branch, which flows into Sugar Creek, then the Withlacoochee River, the Suwannee River, to the Gulf of Mexico.
Drexel Park is upstream of Wainwright Drive, where WWALS did a cleanup in November 2017, and Valdosta spilled 218,075 gallons of raw sewage in 2019, as well as other years. You can help with cleanups or water quality testing.

Event: facebook, meetup

[Booth, children, kayak]
Booth, children, kayak
Photos: John S. Quarterman, of WWALS at Azalea Festival 2019.

Schedule: Continue reading