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: