Johnston Run & Ridge and Valley Streamkeepers Meetings

Event information: Johnston Run Follow-Up Meeting & Ridge and Valley Streamkeepers Annual Picnic, September 15, Mercersburg and Chaneysville, PA

ALLARM held a water quality monitoring training for the Johnston Run Monitoring Program in Mercersburg, PA this February. At the Johnston Run follow-up meeting on the 15th, it was really nice to meet with the same volunteers again, after I had helped train them. The familiar faces were just as enthused about monitoring as when I first met them, and they were very eager to look at their data to try to draw a story of what is happening in their local waterway. Based on their data, the volunteers discussed speaking with landowners to put in fences to reduce the amount of livestock walking through the stream. Besides data interpretation, the volunteers picked dates for Quality Control sampling and refilled their monitoring kits with soap, acid wash solution, and Nitrate II reagent. It was so cool to be pulling together my ALLARM knowledge and environmental science information to answer their questions about their data and the area they are monitoring. I was shocked at how much I was able to make sense of the data and was very proud to see how far I have come in understanding all the different components that go into water quality.

ALLARM has worked with Ridge and Valley Streamkeepers (RVS) for the past 20 years. At the RVS annual picnic it was so interesting to hear from volunteers who have been monitoring their streams for practically the time frame of my whole life. They are so knowledgeable about their specific streams and the area they live in. We updated the volunteers on ALLARM’s recent projects, including encouraging the RVS team to upload their data to the Chesapeake Data Explorer that gathers data from across the Chesapeake Watershed, offering the monitors a pH kit instead of strips, and telling them about the new device that was installed in the LeTort Spring Run for constant monitoring (the Mayfly SL180). It was heartwarming to meet so many dedicated volunteers!

Training volunteers at the Johnston Run workshop in February