Work with a scientist on a community priority

With its new Community Science Fellowship program, Thriving Earth Exchange is ready to support more communities than ever before! Please take a moment to share this opportunity with a colleague:
Would you like to work with a scientist to advance a priority in your community? If you have time and community buy-in, Thriving Earth Exchange will help you design a practical project, match you with a scientist, and accomplish something meaningful.
Learn more. (apply by 16 August to be considered for a September start)
(Don’t forget to have the incredible project you design approved so that you get credit.)

Revitalize, Restore, Replant (R3) seeks volunteers

Fairfax County Stormwater division is seeking plant-knowledgeable volunteers (on a one-off or recurring basis) to help thin/weed native plant gardens installed on school properties around the county through their “Revitalize, Restore, Replant! (R3) program“.

Each school’s garden has been documented with the species planted, and your skill comes in to help remove plants that aren’t those desirable plants as well as to thin natives that have made the garden look “messy”. Volunteers can work with Stormwater to even take some natives home, if that is of interest. Additionally, if you know of better species that you’d recommend for a certain garden, suggestions are welcome! The spreadsheet (R3 Plantings and Survivorship) has school names, locations (city/zip), and types of plants included to make the task even easier.

How often would you need to visit? Overall, it would be great to get volunteers (not necessarily the same one) to visit each garden 3-4 times a year, with a few times during the growing seasons and then a March visit to help prep the site for spring growth.

If you’re interested in helping one-off or on a recurring basis, please contact watersheds@fairfaxcounty.gov.

This project qualifies for service hours as Project S224, Stewardship projects for Fairfax County Public Schools.

Service opportunities with Plant NOVA Natives

Photo by Barbara J. Saffir

“Art Director” needed – Some concepts are expressed better with art than with photos or words. If you would like to coordinate the work of artists who might enjoy donating artistic interpretations for the PNN website and other purposes of things like  “Baby birds need insects, and insects need native plants,” email plantnovanatives@gmail.com.

A second website manager needed – The work is light, but it is good to have more than one person doing updates to the PNN website.

Know of any good lawn and garden maintenance companies? PNN would like to compile a list of vendors that have experience in maintaining native plantings and/or environmentally friendly landscapes. Email your recommendations to plantnovanatives@gmail.com. PNN will then email the companies and ask them if they would like to self-identify as ones that have that kind of experience.

Help label plants at garden centers – There are now 16 garden centers where we are putting red stickers on the Virginia native plants. PNN needs more volunteers at several of those nurseries (particularly Lake Ridge Nursery in Dumfries, Merrifield Fair Oaks and Burke Nursery, but there are others as well). It is a great way to get to know your native plants, and very fun as well! PNN tries to have someone visit each nursery a couple times a month and to have at least two volunteers at each place. They also need help approaching garden centers that are not yet participating.

Another volunteer opportunity – Sept 29: NatureFest, Herndon. Sign up here.

Next Steering Committee meeting – All are welcome! The next meeting is scheduled for August 13 at 10:30 am, but please always check the Event Calendar in case there is a change.

4-H exhibit judges needed, August 2nd

Frying Pan Farm Park
2709 West Ox Road, Herndon, VA
Friday, 2 August 2019
6 pm – finished

The 2019 Fairfax County 4-H Fair & Carnival is fast approaching. The organizers would like to invite you to participate as a judge for the static exhibits. Youth and adults from around Fairfax County will be bringing their exhibits to the Fair showcasing them in fourteen different exhibit departments:

Apiary Products
Science & Technology
Crafts & Woodworking
Floriculture
Visual Arts
Horticulture
Foods & Nutrition
Clothing & Textiles
Interior Design
Scrapbooks & Displays
Black & White Photography
Color Photography
Writing
Short Films

They provide dinner, judging instructions, a Fair T-shirt, and a HUGE Thank You!

For more information or to volunteer contact Kimberly.kruszewski@fairfaxcounty.gov

 

Mason Neck State Park Is Searching for Volunteers

Mason Neck State Park (7301 High Point Road, Lorton, VA) needs YOU!  Do you want to help preserve Virginia’s natural heritage? Are you a retiree or empty nester with a passion for conservation? Are you looking to show a current or future employer you can handle the challenge of public outreach? Then you are perfect for the job of Mason Neck State Park Volunteer! This is where you can help! Mason Neck State Park is offering new volunteer opportunities to help us better serve all those who visit the Park, which has been voted among the best state parks in the Nation.
Contact Station Greeter:  YOU will greet visitors at the Contact Station, check passes or collect parking fees, and (most important!) suggest ways to best experience the many wonders of the Park, whether a family picnic or a visit to the playground alongside Belmont Bay, a hike or bird walk along one of our many trails, or (for the more adventurous) a few hours kayaking, canoeing, or biking.
Visitor Center Greeter:  YOU will be the face of the Park to all those who enter the Visitor Center by answering questions about Park activities and conservation initiatives, scheduling canoe/kayak tours and bike rentals – and just chatting with the many people who visit the park from all across the Nation and the world, perhaps encouraging them to return to enjoy one of the many educational programs the Park Rangers offer each month.
For more information, contact:
Ariel Hartman, Assistant Manager
Mason Neck State Park
703-339-2385 (Office)
Or email Ariel at ariel.hartman@dcr.virginia.gov

Butterflies and dragonflies at Walker Nature Center, July 18, 20, 25, 27

Butterfly Class: An Introduction

July 18
7:00-8:30 PM
Reston, VA Vernon Walker Nature Center
Butterfly count July 20

Discover the colorful and diverse lives of Reston’s “flying flowers.” Learn how to identify Reston’s common butterflies and get a basic introduction to their life history. This class is a great way to prepare for the Reston Butterfly Count.

Register by July 15. Free for participants in July 20 count, otherwise $5. (Click on Nature, then scroll down for Walker Nature Center and scroll to Wildlife Counts and Classes.)

Dragonfly Class: An Introduction

July 25
7:00-8:30 PM

Reston, VA Vernon Walker Nature Center
Dragonfly count July 27

Discover the fast and fascinating lives of Reston’s “flying dragons.” Learn basic identification, natural history and conservation of local dragonflies. Learn to identify Reston’s common dragonflies and get a basic introduction to their bizarre behavior and complex history.

Register by July 22. Free for participants in the July 27 count. (Click on Nature, then scroll down for Walker Nature Center and scroll to Wildlife Counts and Classes.)

 

NVSWCD stream monitoring workshops and sessions

Reston Association Stream Monitoring Workshop

When: Saturday, July 13, 8:00-11:00am

Where: Reston VA

Spring is here and the warm weather is creeping back. What better way to enjoy the changing seasons than to get your feet wet in one of Reston’s streams? RA welcomes new volunteers to assist with stream monitoring at several locations. Get involved with a small team to collect data and identify insects with the goal of assessing the health of Reston’s streams. Not only do you get to learn about streams, it also provides an opportunity to make new friends! Learn more and register.

Pope’s Head Creek Stream Monitoring Session

When: Saturday, July 13, 9:00am-12:00pm

Where: Old Colchester Rd., Fairfax Station VA

Please join us at this lovely site where we can drive right up to the stream bank. No experience necessary. Find details here. RSVP to Margaret here.

Little Pimmit Run Stream Monitoring Workshop

When: Saturday, July 13, 10:00am-12:30pm

Where: Off Maddux Lane, McLean, VA

Join NVSWCD as we discover aquatic life in Pimmit Run! This official NVSWCD stream monitoring workshop covers watershed health, what macroinvertebrates tell us about stream quality, and what you can do to prevent pollution in your local stream. This workshop will also help to prepare you to become a certified stream monitor, and is the last NVSWCD workshop before the certification workshop in August. Registration is limited. Send questions to Ashley Palmer and RSVP here.

Lake Accotink Stream Cleanup

When: Sunday, July 14, 9:00-11:00am

Where: Lake Accotink Park, Springfield VA

* Lake Accotink Trail entrance at Ellet and Inverchapel Road

* Lake Accotink Marina

* Lake Accotink Trail entrance at the end of Danberry Forest Drive (Kirkham and Uxbridge Court Playground

Meet at one of the above locations, pick up trash bags from the volunteer lead, and hit the trail to fill your trash bags with debris. Long sleeves, gloves, boots, and long pants are encouraged. Learn more on the Friends of Accotink Creek calendar.

Broad Run/Dawkin’s Branch Stream Monitoring Session

When: Saturday, August 3, 10:30am-12:30pm

Where: Bristow, VA

Parking is in the upper parking lot of Victory Lakes Elementary School parking at 12001 Tygart Lake, Bristow VA 20136. Follow signs near the playground to the Broad Run trail near the kiosk area. Join Sonnie Coffey at this beautiful adopted outdoor learning site for more water quality awareness in Prince William County. You’re invited to come learn more about benthic invertebrates and how they can determine the water quality of a stream. For more information and RSVP, please contact Sonnie Coffey.

Reston Association Stream Monitoring Workshop

When: Wednesday, August 14, 1:00-4:00pm

Where: Walker Nature Center, Reston VA

Summer is here and the warm weather is creeping back. What better way to enjoy the changing seasons than to get your feet wet in one of Reston’s streams? RA welcomes new volunteers to assist with stream monitoring at several locations. Get involved with a small team to collect data and identify insects with the goal of assessing the health of Reston’s streams. Not only do you get to learn about streams, it also provides an opportunity to make new friends! Learn more and register.

Reston Association Stream Monitoring Workshop

When: Saturday, August 24, 8:00-11:00am

Where: Reston VA

Summer is here and the warm weather is creeping back. What better way to enjoy the changing seasons than to get your feet wet in one of Reston’s streams? RA welcomes new volunteers to assist with stream monitoring at several locations. Get involved with a small team to collect data and identify insects with the goal of assessing the health of Reston’s streams. Not only do you get to learn about streams, it also provides an opportunity to make new friends! Learn more and register.

NOVA Stream Monitor Certification Workshop

This event is jointly organized by the Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District and the Prince William Soil and Water Conservation District and is open to anyone aspiring to become a Certified Stream Monitor.

Once certified, a monitor can adopt a stream site to monitor quarterly. The certification/training follows the Virginia Save Our Streams (SOS) monitoring protocol and the data collected is sent to the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ).

All certified monitors are also invited to seize this opportunity to meet with the Chesapeake Monitoring Council Coordinator for new monitoring meters or get old meters calibrated.

To register and for more information,

please contact Veronica Tangiri (Prince William) or Ashley Palmer (Fairfax)

Project Confluence Webinar, July 23

Do you want to know what engineering and scientific skills and resources are ready to be mobilized in service of communities? Are you curious about the kinds of incentives and barriers that might exist to collaborative work with communities? Are you interested in learning about how engineers and scientists value collaborations with communities?

Tune into Project Confluence Webinar 2 on July 23rd, 2019 at 11am PT/2pm ET held by re-Engineered at Arizona State University to hear more about our research findings from a national survey of engineers and scientists interested in communitybased work (Project Confluence) and find out how to get involved. This webinar is meant for anyone—including working professionals, community leaders, government officials, students, and academics—who cares about promoting engineering and science that serves public need.

This is the second in a series of webinars re-Engineered will host that aim to highlight opportunities for collaboration between community groups, engineers, and scientists to address environmental, climate, and energy concerns. You can view our first webinar here: https://www.reengineered.org/projectconfluencewebinar

DATE: July 23rd, 2019 (Tuesday)

TIME: 2pm Eastern / 11am Pacific

DURATION: 1 hour

REGISTER HERE: https://asu.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_3nrMTIxWSF650vqbQ99prQ

A recording of the webinar will be made available at reengineered.org/projectconfluence within 24 hours in case you cannot make the live webinar.

ABOUT US: We are a group of interdisciplinary researchers (engineers, planners, and social scientists) at Arizona State University focused on building the technical capacity of environmental, climate, and energy justice groups across the US. As a first step in our work, we are talking to communities to see what technical resources are needed to meet their goals. You can find out more about our work at reengineered.org.

HOW TO GET INVOLVED: If you are a community group or non-profit, engineer or scientist, that wants to get involved with Project Confluence, please reach out to us! You can contact us with any questions, comments, or ideas at darshan.karwat@asu.edu (re-Engineered’s lead), anthony.levenda@asu.edu (post-doctoral fellow), or reengineeredlab@gmail.com (re-Engineered’s group email). You can also follow us on Twitter @reengineeredlab.

(If you belong to FMN and want credit, be sure to add this project to the CE calendar)

Join bioblitz at Oxbow Farm, near Front Royal, July 14

Joe Guthrie of the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute invites you to a citizen science volunteer opportunity (Service Code C200). On Sunday, July 14th 2019 VWL and their partners at The Clifton Institute (www.cliftoninstitute.org) are co-hosting a BioBlitz at Oxbow Farm in Warren County, near Front Royal (What’s a BioBlitz? See here)

The Oxbow Farm BioBlitz will be limited to 30 participants, including staff from VWL and Clifton. To ensure a spot at this one-time event, register by using the following link (scroll to the bottom of the linked page and look for the REGISTER icon; select “1” and leave the registration fee at 0.00, then click “Submit”): https://bit.ly/2xijEhK

 

The draft schedule is as follows:

6:30-9:30 AM: Bird walk

10:00 AM-12:00 PM: Reptile and amphibian walk

3:00-4:00 PM: Flying insects walk

4:00-5:00 PM: Terrestrial arthropod walk (turning over logs and rocks)

3:00-5:00 PM: Fungi walk

3:00-6:00 PM: Plants & wildflower walk

8:30-10:00 PM: Night creatures (insects at black lights, reptiles and amphibians)

 

We will use the popular iNaturalist platform/app to collect, review and document everything we find during the BioBlitz.

If this interests you, please sign up by registering at the link above. If you have questions, please email azak@cliftoninstitute.org (cc-ed above) and Joe Guthrie (GuthrieJ@si.edu). Some of you may have visited Oxbow in the past and know how special it is. For those of you who’ve not seen Oxbow, here’s an opportunity.

Help FODM remove invasive plants, July 8th & 22nd

Dyke Marsh Wildlife Preserve
Haul Road Trail
Mondays, 8 July and 22 July 2019
9 am

Friends of Dyke Marsh must remove plants like mile-a-minute, Japanese stiltgrass and garlic mustard so that these invasives do not outcompete the more than 3,500 plants FODM put in in 2018. They will help you identify the target plants (no more than 5) and show you what to do. Volunteer whatever time you can and if the heat becomes unbearable, we can stop.

Please let them know if you can help. They will have some gloves and tools, but it would be helpful if you could bring your own gloves, clippers and loppers. Bring water, wear sturdy shoes, long sleeves and pants and sun protection. You might want to bring insect repellent. Meet at the native plant site along the Haul Road trail just past the second bench on the west side of the trail.
Please RSVP to info@fodm.org.