Iowa Rivers Revival — an organization committed to protecting Iowa’s rivers and streams and watersheds — invites you to nominate your city for their River Town of the Year award. The award, which last year went to Charles City for its outstanding work developing the city’s Cedar River waterfront, is a great way to highlight your community’s work protecting a local river.
The annual River Town of the Year award recognizes an Iowa town or city for outstanding efforts to reclaim river-fronts as anchors for economic development, recreation, and good ecological practices. Cities are invited to apply for the award, or citizens may nominate their town.
Applications are due by November 1, 2012. The award will be presented in January 2013 at a reception hosted by Iowa Rivers Revival in the River Town of the Year community.
For a detailed application, please go to www.iowarivers.org. Previous “River Town” award recipients are Webster City, Elkader, Coon Rapids, Cedar Falls, and Charles City. The web site has examples of towns’ applications for the award, IRR news releases, and news coverage.
The River Town of the Year award recognizes a city’s outstanding work to enhance connections to its river. For example, Charles City was honored for responding to severe floods in 1999 and 2008 “by embracing the Cedar River with new ideas and bold projects,” including transforming a low-head dam into Iowa’s first whitewater kayak course and installing the state’s largest permeable paving system. Applicants must demonstrate commitment to protecting and maintaining river water quality and promoting the river as an asset to the town.
Other activities might include: dam-safety efforts, river-oriented tourism efforts, river clean-up projects, Water Trail designation projects, innovative storm water and river protection projects, walking trails along the river, education and advocacy by local river or watershed groups, and efforts for river use and appreciation (restaurants, bed & breakfasts, bait shops, boat rentals), etc.