Science, Art, & History of the Salish Sea
7:00 PM on Wednesdays. Suggested $10 donation per person.
March 6th: First Inhabitants of the Salish Sea – Adam Lorio
March 13th: Climate Change: Impacts on Plankton – Dr. Ambrust
March 20th: Family Night: Nature Journals – Susan Zwinger
March 27th: Plastics: Problems and Solutions – Heather Trim
April 3rd: Storm Water: Challenges and Solutions – Matt Zupich
April 10th: Communicating Science Through Art – Carla Stehr
Ongoing Front Room Art Show: Monday – Friday, 10am – 5pm, March 1 – April 26
At the Bayview Cash Store, Front Room Gallery (Upstairs): 5603 Bayview Road, Langley
For more information www.soundwaterstewards.org, or firstname.lastname@example.org
Brought to you by Sound Water Stewards, Goosefoot, and Whidbey Watershed Stewards.
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In October, we celebrated the 20th anniversary of the Maxwelton Outdoor Classroom!
Twenty years ago, educators, parents, and local experts collaborated to realize the vision of the Maxwelton Outdoor Classroom. What began as an idea to raise salmon in a classroom has grown to provide regular opportunities for hands on science and environmental education to K-8 students from Whidbey Island and beyond! The Classroom itself was dedicated in the Fall of 1997, and has become the vehicle to help educate more than 25,000 students since.
Event photos by photographer and volunteer, Gordon Marvin:
Whidbey Watershed Stewards has big plans to spruce up the Freeland Wetland Preserve, and we need your help!
We had a very successful work party on Saturday, July 15, 2017. Tasks for varying abilities included:
- Defining the trail through the cedars
- Building log benches
- Building small bridges over two drainages
- Cutting back vine blackberry and nettles
- Removing moss from the roof of the barn
- Tidying the barn patios
- Re-attaching and hanging new gutters for rain water collection
- Removing invasive Tansy
Here are some great photos of our work that day:
The Whidbey Watershed Stewards organization was honored to be highlighted by Thriving Communities in early 2016.
Please enjoy the wonderful video they created to tell our story. Share it far and wide, because as Thriving Communities says, “the ripples of energy and connection of hope and action throughout our bioregion and beyond has a catalytic effect.”
As of September 2015, Whidbey Watershed Stewards is the proud steward for six Whidbey Island properties. Please read below for a more detailed description of the long-term goals, activities, and locations of each site:
The Lower Maxwelton Roadside Property
Old Clinton Creek
The property purchased by the association early in 1995 had been surrounded in recent years by expanding development around the town of Clinton, Washington. In contrast to the adjacent area, it retains natural vegetative cover and is a rich environment for native species diversity. It contains a small stream flowing into Puget Sound, an associated wetland, and the slopes on either side of the stream. The initial impetus for the association’s formation was the fact that this property had been placed on the commercial real estate market, and appeared to be in danger of losing its natural character through subsequent development or cutting of the mature trees along its edge.…It is the belief of the association’s Board that the action of preserving ecological function in sensitive and environmentally rich areas is of inherent value …
Freeland Wetland Preserve
The Freeland Wetland Preserve is an open space of approximately 45 acres located east of Freeland, WA near Newman, Double Bluff, and Scott Roads. In 2014, the Friends of Freeland, a local non-profit, donated this area to the Whidbey Watershed Stewards with the intention of conserving the area forever as open space for public education and passive recreational enjoyment. The area consists almost exclusively of wetlands, providing a natural habitat for plants and wildlife.
Native species of wetland and riparian plants dominate the property. The Whidbey Watershed Stewards intend to protect the diverse native plant community from competition by invasive species through specific removal of these invasive species. No removal of native species or intentional alteration of the hydrology of the site is to occur. This area serves as an important habitat for bird, mammal, and amphibian species.
Whidbey Watershed Stewards maintains The Freeland Wetland Preserve property as public open space and conservation property. No alterations to the site will occur with the exception of those intended to protect public safety (dangerous tree removal), or restoration activities (invasive plant removal, replanting).
In April 2013, Whidbey Watershed Stewards adopted the Frank D. Robinson Beach Park off Mutiny Bay Rd (on Robinson Rd). Our first goal was to remove all the noxious weeds and plant, encourage native plants to “retake” the park. In the first year we removed most the large Scot’s Broom and immediately saw many of the natural plant life reestablishing its claim to the beach. Recently, we planted some shore pines and are continuing to remove undesirable plant-life as it appears. Volunteer work for the beach park occurs every couple of months. E-mail email@example.com if you want to get the notices.
The Outdoor Classroom
Since the opening of the Outdoor Classroom in 1997, Whidbey Watershed Stewards has presented a steady program of K-5 lessons in spring and fall sessions. Each lesson is aligned with grade level learning objectives and is developed and guided by our staff. We have grown and adapted our lessons over the years, and continue to improve and meet the needs of teachers and students.
The self-guided trail at the Outdoor Classroom site is open to the public year-round. We only ask that you respect the nature preserve and not disturb the wildlife and plants. Please have your dog on a leash while you walk, and pick up poop. The trail and boardwalk platforms are wheelchair accessible. A brochure at the information kiosk explains the viewpoints and the watershed system. Comments can be left in the kiosk mailbox.
Smith & Minor Island Aquatic Reserve
Smith and Minor Islands (S&M) lie a few miles off the western shore of Whidbey Island near Oak Harbor. The Islands exist within the 36,300 acres of tidelands and seafloor habitat of the S&M Islands Aquatic Reserve which are managed by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Aquatic reserves are zones of the seas and coasts where wildlife is protected from damage and disturbance and are widely promoted as a means of fostering biodiversity, achieving more natural population structures and managing exploited fish populations. DNR has establishing aquatic reserves throughout the state to protect important native ecosystems. It is an effort to promote the preservation, restoration, and enhancement of state-owned aquatic lands that are of special educational, scientific, or environmental interest. As part of this effort DNR created the Aquatic Reserve Citizen Science Program which consists of partnerships between non-profit organizations like Whidbey Watershed Stewards and DNR at each of the seven Reserves. Lots of opportunities to do research, outreach, work side-by-side with researchers. If you’re interested e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to get the notices.