Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Reconnecting Our Waterways and Being a Junior (Yikes!)

Hello again, readers!

As I approach the last fourth of my Junior year as a River Steward (oh my goodness, that's difficult to say and even think about!), I keep realizing just how far I've come since my first Orientation trip as a Sophomore. It's not just about teaching people of all ages about the assets our rivers are, or kayaking to experience the beauty of the rivers, or learning about the policy, science, engineering, business, culture, and education that governs our rivers - I've learned that pieces of all those disciplines come together to form a unique vision for every region. If there's water, you can bet there will be impassioned people.

I've come across a really cool initiative in Indianapolis called Reconnecting to Our Waterways, aka ROW): the science of a better city. The second I saw it, it reminded me a lot of what we do in River Stewards - they have elements to improve the quality of life, or vitality, of their region, just like we do. They have plans and measurement techniques to gauge their successes, like we do. They even have a pretty neat video with time lapse, like we do! I think that this kind of approach to city development - focusing on our natural assets, approaching the development from a holistic, vital viewpoint - is what cities in the United States need to be healthier, happier, and more successful. There's a certain imbalance if a city focuses solely on economic development, or just on its ecological vitality, or just the aesthetics of a region. Cities work better when everything works together. It's why I love the River Summit and why I love being a Steward: everyone comes together to learn and teach and help others see our region  as the amazing place we know it to be - to make life great. 

Check out their website, it's pretty neat!

P.S. In other news, I was so happy to discover that one of my favorite pop up shops from Activated Spaces has a permanent residence and a new name: TRADE. GO DAYTON!

River Love,


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Junior League of Dayton

On February 23, 2013 Liz Morrison, Allie Rakowski and I had the opportunity to make a presentation at the Junior League of Dayton. We informed them of the great natural resources there are in Dayton and how amazing our water is as an asset.  I enjoyed informing the numerous women in the audience because they are all leaders in Dayton and can help to spread our knowledge of Dayton's water.  We also learned about other initiatives in Dayton such as; Peace on Fifth, Cutureworks, ThinkTV and Dayton Development Coalition.  The morning was very enjoyable.  Above is a picture of us with Jessica Saunders a former Fitz Center member.  

River Love,
Angela Brancatelli

Monday, March 4, 2013

Riverfront Development just Down Stream

Hello friends!

This past Saturday I had the opportunity to visit the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati.  Not only did I enjoy friends and rediscover the origins of slavery in America and the Civil Rights Movement, but I finally experience how our downstream neighbors along the Ohio are reinventing their riverfront.  Located between Paul Brown Stadium and Great American Ballpark, I walked amongst the outdoor stage, Civil War Memorial and the Cincinnati bike center.  Knowing only a little bit about the Banks Project (the river development project), I was surprised at the progress they have already made and the impact it has had on the area.  My friends and I meditated while walking the labyrinth and learning about the Black Brigade defending Cincinnati from Confederate troops, all while bikers and runners enjoyed the perfect morning sun.  According to Wikipedia, $3.5 billion has been spent on the Banks and even more is yet to come.  
Just imagine what Dayton could do with only 10% of that...