Getting to Know the Watershed

Posted on: March 3rd, 2015 by Leslie_Zucker

Recently, AWSMP Watershed Educator Jennifer Bowman attended a watershed event organized by Woodstock NY Transition and shares a few thoughts about the event:  The event included a community activity, discussion, and short film presentation by Co-founder and Program Director of the Occidental Arts and Ecology Center, Brock Dolman. The presentation, was originally given at the Bioneers National Conference in 2009. It focused on water systems, watershed science, climate change awareness, and ideas for community education and involvement. A highlight of the event for me, was after the film. The event organizers orchestrated a clever and simple activity where the entire Woodstock watershed basin was outlined across the studio space. With the basin outlined, event hosts organized a living watershed model across the room, village by village. People from different parts of the watershed gathered in small groups around their specific village spots in the room, and blue paper streamers were used to draw water lines connecting villages throughout the watershed. This wonderful activity helped people to see the entire watershed basin from top to bottom, side to side, source water locations, and destinations. With maps around the room for reference material, people helped each other to understand and clarify the basic structure of the watershed basin, boundaries, and where the water they use comes from. Watching the community work together to understand their watershed in greater detail was very rewarding. Do you know what watershed you live in? To learn more about the Ashokan watershed, visit: