Connecting People with Nature
Photo: Ben Meadors
Connecting People to nature
Audubon Arkansas’s conservation efforts around Fourche Creek have attracted two great partners in July. We received $20,000 from corporate neighbor 3M, allowing us to conduct more outreach and cleanup events along Fourche. The 3M Environmental Reserve Fund supports a series of BioBlitzes – events where volunteers will discover the rich diversity of flora and fauna that inhabit Fourche Bottoms, while also classifying and removing trash that has been washed into the woods.
The Arkansas Arts Council has agreed to support Drain Smart again this year, increasing their investment to $8,700 through the Collaborative Project Support funding program (made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts). Audubon Arkansas administers the Drain Smart program, blending public art with a conservation message on Little Rock storm drains. Funding goes to support the artists that participate, in addition to purchasing supplies and equipment our talented artists need to complete these unique works of art in the capital city.
“These investments by corporate and civic partners reflect the importance of Fourche Creek to our communities in Little Rock,” said Brett Kincaid, Executive Director for Audubon Arkansas. “We are grateful that 3M and the Arts Council continue to show faith in our work and our mission to clean up this diamond in the rough.”
Over 400 people attended the Drain Smart Meet the Artists Celebration at Mosaic Templars Cultural Center on June 13. That is double last year's crowd. Guests talked with the artists about their murals, voted for their favorite art, donated to support the project, and learned that you should never litter because trash on the street gets washed into our creeks through storm drains. Checkout photos from the event. Vote online now through July 13.
Thanks to our caterers: Bavo!, Del Frisco, The Root Cafe, Flyway Brewing, and Lake Liquor. Thanks also to our 2017 Drain Smart sponsors: The Promenade at Chenal, THV11, Tegna Foundation, Heights Neighborhood Association, Arkansas Arts Center, The Bernice Garden, Cental Arkansas Water, Hillcrest Harvestfest, Hillcrest Residents Association, Hillcrest Merchants Association, Central Arkansas Library System, Downtown Little Rock Partnership, Pulaski County Recycling & Waste Reducation. Support for Drain Smart is also provided, in part, by the Arkansas Arts Council, an agency of the Department of Arkansas Heritage, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
"Endangered Birds of America" 2018 calendar featuring original paintings by Little Rock artist Hannah Keltner benefits Audubon. Ms. Keltner will donate half of the proceeds to Audubon Arkansas, the rest covers the cost of printing. The cost is $20. Order by e-mailing her. This is part of her year-long independent study project she did on John James Audubon and bird conservation. See more of her work at PaintedSparrow Design.
Audubon Arkansas brings National Renewables Expert to Arkansas
A heartfelt thank you to the 86 people who spent a collective 360 hours on Saturday March 11 to cleanup Interstate Park and Fourche Bottoms, plus clear the first 1/2-mile of trail through the bottoms. Volunteers removed 130 bags of trash, 202 tires (176 of which were pulled out by Arkansas Canoe Club in the weeks prior to the event) plus an excavator tire estimated to weigh 2,200 lbs. All of that plus miscellaneous junk added up to about 4 tons of trash! Thanks also to Keep Little Rock Beautiful and American Rivers for supplies and promoting, Starbucks on Sam Peck for coffee, Loblolly Creamery for the coupons, and Davis Tire for the free tire recycling service. Thanks to Arkansas Canoe Club, Central Arkansas Trail Alliance, Central Arkansas Master Naturalists, Entergy, 3M, UALR, and Boy Scouts for bringing groups of volunteers.