Bentonville, AR……. Bentonville Parks & Recreation along with the Beaver Water District invites the community to attend a ribbon cutting ceremony celebrating the installation of a hydration station at the Citizen’s Park Trail. The ceremony will be held on Thursday, October 10th at 2 p.m. at the Citizens Park Pavilion. Citizen’s Park Trail is located at 1101 SW Citizens Circle, Bentonville, Ark.
Beaver Water District partnered with Bentonville Parks & Recreation to provide the new hydration station. The station’s amenities include a water fountain, a bottle-filling tap, and a ground-level drinking bowl for pets. This partnership will improve the experience of those patrons using the Trail and Pavilion at Citizen’s Park.
Beaver Water District supplies clean, safe drinking water-sourced from Beaver Lake, to Fayetteville, Springdale, Rogers, and Bentonville. These cities pump, store, distribute, and resell the water to their customers. For more information on Beaver Water District, please visit: https://www.bwdh2o.org/.
To learn more about Bentonville Parks and Recreation, please visit us online at www.playbentonville.com, or call 479.464.7275.
Bill Watkins of Rogers (second from left), President of Beaver Water District’s Board of Directors, is seated with University of Arkansas students Emily Sherrill of Rogers, and Jake Krier and Alyssa Ferri, both of Fayetteville, all of whom were chosen to receive Joe M. Steele & Hardy W. Croxton Memorial Scholarships for the Fall 2019 Semester. These scholarships provide financial assistance to upperclassman or graduate students in the Departments of Civil Engineering, Biological and Agricultural Engineering or Crop, Soil, and Environmental Sciences who have demonstrated interest in drinking water treatment, wastewater treatment, environmental or life sciences. Board Members donate board meeting attendance fees to the scholarship fund. The fund is managed by the University of Arkansas. Donations may be made payable to the Joe M. Steele & Hardy W. Croxton Memorial Scholarship Endowment Account and mailed to Gift Services, 300 University House, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701. For more information about making a tax-deductible donation, contact Ethan Hayman, Associate Director of Development for the UA College of Engineering, at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (479) 575- 6018.
The community is invited to a ribbon cutting ceremony celebrating the installation of a hydration station in Sweetbriar Park along a newly completed section of the Niokaska Creek Trail. The ceremony will be held on Monday, September 9 at 1:30 p.m. in Sweetbriar Park (2636 E. Sweetbriar Drive, Fayetteville, AR.).
Beaver Water District partnered with the City of Fayetteville to make the new hydration station possible. Surveys of trail users conducted over the years have consistently shown that hydration stations are the most desired facility along the trail system. The station’s amenities include a water fountain, a bottle filling tap, and a ground-level drinking bowl for pets. This is an exciting partnership that will help make our trail system more user-friendly, particularly during hot weather. Beaver Water District supplies clean, safe drinking water – sourced from Beaver Lake – to Fayetteville, Springdale, Rogers, and Bentonville. These cities pump, store, distribute, and resell the water to their customers. Niokaska Creek Trail construction is well underway with completion anticipated for the spring of 2020. The City of Fayetteville’s in-house trail construction crew is building the concrete 12-foot wide trail. The south end of the trail is in Gulley Park and travels along the Niokaska Creek, through Sweetbriar Park and connects to the Mud Creek Trail at the north end. Mud Creek Trail provides access to the Razorback Regional Greenway. Approximately 4,000 residents live within ½ mile of the Niokaska Creek Trail.
The public is encouraged to attend the ribbon cutting ceremony to help celebrate the partnership of the City of Fayetteville with Beaver Water District and to take a sneak peek at the newly completed section of the Niokaska Creek Trail. To learn more about the City’s trails program, please visit this webpage.
Six-year-old Alex, son of Monica and Aaron Shoemaker of Bentonville, held the winning ticket for the Beaver Water District Secchi Day Science Fair on Beaver Lake grand prize kayak package, courtesy of Bass Pro Shops in Rogers. Alex won the package during the door prize drawing that culminated the 14th annual event held Aug. 17, 2019, at Prairie Creek Recreation Area on Beaver Lake. Pictured from left are Dan Skoff, celebrity emcee and Chief Meteorologist for KNWA; sister, Abby, 14; Aaron Sr.; Alex; James McCarty, co-emcee and Manager of Environmental Quality for Beaver Water District; brother, Aaron Jr., 15; and Monica. For more information, visit www.bwdh2o.org or find Beaver Water District on Facebook.
Secchi Day Science Fair on Beaver Lake has become a tradition in Northwest Arkansas. Sponsored by Beaver Water District, the event draws several hundred people from Northwest Arkansas and surrounding areas. This year’s event, logging in as the 14th anniversary, is Saturday, Aug. 17, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Prairie Creek Recreation Area. Just plug the address 9300 N. Park Road, Rogers, Arkansas, into your GPS. You’ll travel a few miles east of Rogers off of Highway 12 to arrive at this beautiful park on the lake. Look for the temporary signage along the road that will help direct you to the event.
This year is made even more special with the attendance of Sara Peel, President of the North American Lake Management Society (NALMS). The mission of NALMS is to forge partnerships among citizens, scientists, and professionals to foster the management and protection of lakes and reservoirs for today and tomorrow.
“We’re very excited to have Sara with us this year,” said Brad Hufhines, Environmental Specialist with Beaver Water District and former board of director representative for NALMS. “Secchi Day on Beaver Lake is one of the largest events in the nation that supports the Secchi Dip-In. The Secchi Dip-In is an international program administered by NALMS that utilizes volunteer scientist to track changes in water quality. While Sara is in town, she plans to tour the lake and visit stream restoration sites and low impact development sites that support the Source Water Protection Plan at Beaver Water District.”
Secchi Day on Beaver Lake is named for the Secchi disk, a black and white device lowered into the water to measure clarity. In the early morning, citizen science volunteers, using their own boats, collect water samples and take Secchi disk readings.
“Our core group of lake volunteers (citizen scientists) collect water samples and get clarity (depth) readings at various pre-selected sites on the lake,” said Amy Wilson, Director of Public Affairs for Beaver Water District. “The hands-on, lakeshore activities focus on the importance of Beaver Lake to the quality of life in Northwest Arkansas. In addition to door prizes and a grand prize kayak, we’ll have healthy snacks in the morning, followed by lunch (with vegetarian choices) and frozen treats. Beaver Water District is leading the way to ensure our community cares about Beaver Lake and values this beautiful natural resource. After all, it’s the drinking water for one in seven Arkansans.”
Attendees can spend time with education specialists, visit the Beaver Lake Fire Department fire truck and first aid station, test drive a kayak, make a water testing device to take home, make it rain on the watershed, and see how water flows impact water quality in the lake. All ages enjoy this event, which is ideal for scout troops, families, budding scientists, K-12 up to college students, retirees, residents of the lake and individuals from all over the area. About 550 people attend each year.
“We’ll also have mini-concerts featuring songs from Water Fun Facts with Papa Rap. Children will be encouraged to sing along in English and Spanish to original water songs based on the companion coloring book. Each family will receive a free coloring books and other items,” Wilson said. She added that the Marshallese community, which has a heavy emphasis on water, also is invited to share native culture and crafts.
Beaver Water District’s core partners who make Secchi Day a success include celebrity emcee Dan Skoff, Chief Meteorologist for KNWA, science experts, and staff and volunteers associated with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers-Beaver Lake, the U.S. Geological Survey, the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service, Northwest Arkansas Stormwater Education, Hobbs State Park, Northwest Arkansas Master Naturalists, Beaver Watershed Alliance, Beaver Lake Fire Department, Ozarks Water Watch, One Community, NALMS, Girl Scouts Diamonds of Arkansas, and The Ozark Society. In-kind sponsors include Harps Foods, Hiland Dairy, Cook’s Natural Market, Bass Pro Shops, and Outdoor Cap. Participating media sponsors include KNWA and 3W Magazine. For information, visit bwdh2o.org.
July 2019 has been proclaimed by Governor Asa Hutchinson as Lakes Appreciation Month in Arkansas. With over a half-million acres of reservoirs in Arkansas, summer is a great time to encourage all Arkansans to appreciate the lakes of our Natural State. By participating in recreation and stewardship activities, we can all enjoy and contribute back to support the benefits provided by our lakes, including drinking water for much of the state, as well as community and economic growth.
In addition to Lakes Appreciation Month being a time to appreciate lakes, it is a time to think about where we would be without high-quality water, and the importance of partnerships to protect natural resources from threats such as excess sediment and nutrients and invasive plant and animal species that put stress on waterbodies. The importance of protecting these lakes and reservoirs for future generations is critical to our quality of life, communities, wildlife, and potential for future growth and economic development, not only in Northwest Arkansas but across the state.
Letters of support for Lakes Appreciation Month have been signed by the Beaver Water District, American Water Works Association- Arkansas Chapter, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, Hobbs State Park Conservation Area, Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism, Arkansas Natural Resources Commission, Lake Fayetteville Watershed Partnership, and Central Arkansas Water.
Beaver Lake, one of the largest lakes in Arkansas, is the drinking water source for over 500,000 people in the NWA region.
The Beaver Lake watershed (area of land that drains to Beaver Lake) is 1,192 square miles of land and water, including rivers, streams, lakes, prairies, and forests, and is home to 17 incorporated municipalities. The landscape is woven together geographically by the White River, with the headwaters starting in the southern portions of Washington County and western parts of Madison County, flowing northerly into Benton and Carroll counties to form the lake. Beaver Lake also generates 142 million kilowatt hours annually for energy consumption and brings over $43 million to the local economy through recreation and tourism.
Lakes Appreciation Month is a signature program of the North American Lake Management Society (NALMS) whose mission is to foster the management and protection of lakes and reservoirs for today and tomorrow. Many free, public, outdoor activities, including canoeing and kayaking on local lakes, volunteer monitoring programs, stewardship cleanups, and a rain barrel workshop, will be happening throughout the month of July.
Visit www.beaverwatershedalliance.org or call 479-750-8007 for more information and to RSVP for events. To learn more about the national Lakes Appreciation program, visit www.nalms.org.
The Beaver Watershed Alliance is formed of a diverse stakeholder group representing agricultural, recreation, conservation, water utility, business, and private landowner perspectives who all work together for the benefit of Beaver Lake and its watershed.
On June 11, Beaver Water District’s Top Ops Team competed and placed fifth in the national Top Ops competition at the annual American Water Works Association’s (AWWA) conference in Denver. Top Ops is the “college bowl” for water operators. Teams compete to answer technical questions related to the operations of water facilities. Join us in congratulating BWD’s team members, all of whom are Plant Operator IIs for BWD: (from left) Steven Caudle of Lowell, Dustin Mayhew of Springdale, and Gabe Frost of Siloam Springs. Nikki Holloway of Springdale (far right), BWD Laboratory Analyst, serves as the team’s coach. BWD Laboratory Supervisor, Mindi Dearing of Farmington, serves as Chair of AWWA’s Top Ops Subcommittee (not pictured).