The Androscoggin Partner Award is awarded by the Androscoggin Land Trust (ALT) to an organization sharing its vision and demonstrating, with environmental integrity, that the potential of the Androscoggin River and its communities is best realized through collaboration.
The 2018 Androscoggin Partner Award was awarded to the Androscoggin River Watershed Council at ALT’s Annual Meeting on November 13, 2018.
Based in Bethel, the Androscoggin River Watershed Council (commonly known as ARWC) connects people and organizations along the entire 170-mile course of the Androscoggin River and throughout the river’s 3500 square mile watershed. The Council was created in 1999 to bring together diverse groups with an interest in the river’s health—including ALT and other land trusts, environmental groups, the pulp and paper industry, local towns and state agencies, recreation groups, etc—with the goals of improving environmental quality, encouraging stewardship, and promoting healthy and prosperous communities in the region.
ARWC’s signature summer event is the Source-to-the-Sea, a series of day paddles beginning at the headwaters of the river, Lake Umbagog in New Hampshire, and ending in Merrymeeting Bay where it flows into the sea. While most paddlers typically join in for a day or two, some intrepid boaters have paddled the entire course of the river. Designed to draw attention to the beauty, accessibility, and potential of the river, the paddles include interesting talks on topics such as Native American history, water quality monitoring, habitat restoration, and fisheries. ALT has hosted the two legs of the Source to the Sea trip as paddlers travel downriver through Jay and Lewiston/Auburn.
In addition to holding an annual conference for people to gather and exchange information and ideas about river-related topics, the Council recently created an Interactive River Trail Guide, a mapping application available on their website, where river users can check out all the put-in and take-out sites along the river.
ALT is grateful to the Androscoggin River Watershed Council for its varied dedicated efforts to highlight and care for the Androscoggin River and its watershed, and to help us all enjoy its many resources.