Summer Solstice Twilight Paddle – Friday, June 21, 2019, 5:45 PM

Celebrate Midsummer on the river! Glide through the sunset and paddle our beautiful Farmington River on the longest day of the year! Jay Kaplan, Naturalist and Director of Roaring Brook Nature Center will illuminate the mysteries of our river communities as daylight fades to nightfall. On past trips, we’ve glimpsed eagles, great blue herons, muskrats, beavers, deer, and owls and been regaled by the songs of native songbirds and insects. (Trip may land after nightfall.)

Pre-registration required!  860-658-4442 or

Members: Need a boat: $25 per person; Have a boat: $20

Non-members: Need a boat: $30 per person; Have a boat: $25

Farmington River Archaeology – Saturday, July 13, 2019 9:00 AM

Paddle our ancient Native American canoe trail as we explore the fascinating culture of the people who came before us. Dr. Kenneth Feder, Professor of Anthropology at Central Connecticut State University, author of numerous archaeology books, and founder of the Farmington River Archeology Project, specializes in North American archaeology. He has spent a lifetime exploring the clues left behind by those who lived in our Farmington River Valley thousands of years ago. Travel back in time and see our river from the perspective of our first inhabitants. We’ll hear about the latest discoveries from this summer’s dig along the river.

Pre-registration required by Thursday, July 11!  860-658-4442 or

Members: Need a boat: $25 per person; Have a boat: $20

Non-members: Need a boat: $30 per person; Have a boat: $25

Rain Garden Planting – Volunteer Work Days!

We are thrilled to continue with more rain garden installations this year thanks to grant funding and support from the City of Bristol. But we need volunteers to help complete the final step of the rain garden process!
Join us to May 8, 9, 10, from 11:00 am – 5:00 pm to volunteer and to learn about rain gardens, native plant species, and more. Bring trowels, shovels, work gloves, sunblock, water, and your spirit of river stewardship!

Location: Page Park (off of King Street, directly across from Bristol Eastern High School) turn at the light into Page Park then park at the Playground on the left.
Register: Please contact us at 860-658-4442 ex 201 or by email to register by Monday, May 6.

Why a Rain Garden?

The Problem: The Pequabuck River in Bristol, a tributary of the Farmington River, provides a habitat for wildlife and many aesthetic and recreational opportunities. However, it faces environmental challenges from polluted stormwater runoff. Polluted runoff is caused by rain and other precipitation that does not directly infiltrate into the soil. With increased artificial impervious surfaces, such as roadways, parking lots, and rooftops, stormwater runoff increases, carrying toxic pollutants with it. These include oil and antifreeze from vehicles, pesticides and fertilizers from lawns, trash, bacteria from pet waste, hazardous waste, and more.
The Solution: One of the best ways to help address the problem of non-point source pollution is to use green infrastructure. By encouraging the use of stormwater as a resource to enhance landscape features such as lawns and rain gardens, stormwater can be diverted away from homes and buildings, thus potentially reducing basement flooding and water pooling while improving the water quality in streams and the Pequabuck River. Rain gardens are planted depressions that collect and infiltrate rainwater runoff from impervious areas allowing for the runoff to be absorbed and thus prevent it from being carried into a nearby waterway. The plantings are of native plant species and provide food and shelter for bees, butterflies, and songbirds. 

And there’s more! Right across the road from Page Park we are supporting a rain garden installation at Bristol Eastern High School in partnership with friends at the Pequabuck River Watershed Association! Not only is this an excellent learning opportunity for the high school students, but it augments stormwater pollution reduction in the Pequabuck, and ultimately the Farmington River. 

Barkhamsted Earth Day Nature Festival

Join FRWA at the Earth Day Festival! Alisa Phillips-Griggs, Water Quality and Projects Coordinator, will be leading a macroinvertebrate workshop for youth and adults alike! Learn more about how insects and bugs can be indicators of water quality. More details to come!

Come get your nature on! Barkhamsted Earth Day Nature Festival features Birds of Prey show, hands-on walking stick and bat house making for youth, river insect collection, wildlife tables, info on native plants, talks on fire-starting in the wild, camping, moose and many other exciting exhibits. Free and open to all, free food and music.

Rain Garden Workshop

Aimee Petras, Outreach and Education Coordinator for the Farmington River Watershed Association, will outline why installations of bioswales, rain gardens and river buffers are important for the river, showing some local examples. She will explore ways to reduce stormwater and improve water quality in our community.

Free downspout disconnect kit for Bristol residents! There will be a demonstration of how to disconnect a downspout (gutter) and downspout disconnect kits will be given to community members living in Bristol attending the program (a value of $20).

Join us! Bring a Friend!

Thursday, April 18, 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Bristol Public Library

5 High St., Bristol, CT 06010

Fee: No charge is associated with this informational workshop hosted by the City of Bristol Public Works. Download the free rain garden app from UConn

FRWA Hiring: Seasonal River Stewards, Summer 2019 (PT)

The Farmington River Watershed Association (FRWA) is accepting applications for two River Stewards for summer 2019.

River Stewards work in the field, laboratory, and office on projects, including weekly water quality sampling in the Farmington River and tributaries; laboratory analysis; stream temperature monitoring; and road-stream crossing assessments to identify problematic stream crossings, habitat connectivity issues and crossings in need of retrofit or replacement. The River Stewards also conduct community outreach (live and online) to promote safe and responsible river recreation and assist with FRWA’s “River Smart” stormwater pollution reduction outreach activities.

Full job description and how to apply here: Seasonal Employment Opportunity 

Water Awareness – Meet, Watch, Discuss

Enjoy an inspiring morning with folks like you who want to join in protecting natural resources from undue exploitation and harm. We are sponsoring our partner, the Pequabuck River Watershed Association, who has invited a wide range of people who care about holding on to healthy land, air, food and wildlife and want to learn more about present and potential threats to the sustainability of our environment. Join us!


10:30 – 11:00 AM
Discover, meet, and learn about conservation efforts near you.

11:00 – 12:20 PM View film: “Water & Power: A California Heist”

12:20 – 12:45 PM Hear, discuss, and help identify environmental priorities in CT and see how you can help grassroots environmental efforts succeed.