Bend-Based Outdoor Industry Businesses Unite for Whychus Creek Stewardship Project The Backyard Collective Represents Hands-on Conservation

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On Tuesday, June 25, volunteers from Conservation Alliance members and other outdoor companies will gather in Sisters for a day of collective stewardship and conservation on Whychus Creek.

In an effort to contribute to healthy stream conditions in Whychus Creek, Conservation Alliance volunteers from Ruffwear, Footzone, Stanley PMI, and Hydro Flask will work with the Upper Deschutes Watershed Council to protect and restore degraded riparian areas along the creek. Volunteers will monitor water quality and restore stream conditions through a variety of activities including planting native species. Enhancing and increasing riparian vegetation will benefit fish and wildlife and increase stream shading to improve instream conditions.

“We’re eager to get our hands dirty restoring habitat on Whychus Creek,” said Serena Gordon, Program Associate at The Conservation Alliance. “Our local member companies always enjoy helping to preserve the wonderful natural places we have in Central Oregon.”

The Bend Backyard Collective takes place Tuesday, June 25, 2013 from 8:45 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., meeting at Village Green Park in Sisters.

“Our mission at the Watershed Council is to protect and restore the rivers and streams in Central Oregon through collaborative community projects,” said Kolleen Yake, Education Director at the Upper Deschutes Watershed Council. “We are committed to engaging community members of all ages in meaningful, hands-on stewardship. Our volunteers are inspired to be lifelong stream stewards when they are able to dig in the dirt and contribute to stream health with their own hands.”

For more information about this event, please contact coordinator, Cassondra Schindler at cassondra@conservationalliance.com or 541.222.9380.

About the Conservation Alliance:

The Conservation Alliance is an organization of outdoor businesses whose collective contributions support grassroots environmental organizations and their efforts to protect wild places where outdoor enthusiasts recreate. Alliance funds have played a key role in protecting rivers, trails, wildlands and climbing areas.

Membership in the Alliance is open to companies representing all aspects of the outdoor industry, including manufacturers, retailers, publishers, mills and sales representatives. The result is a diverse group of businesses whose livelihood depends on protecting our natural environment.

Since its inception in 1989, the Alliance has contributed more than $11.9 million to grassroots conservation groups. Alliance funding has helped save more than 41 million acres of wildlands; protect 2,700 miles of rivers; stop or remove 25 dams; designate five marine reserves; and purchase nine climbing areas.

For complete information on the Conservation Alliance, see www.conservationalliance.com.

About Upper Deschutes Watershed Council:

The Upper Deschutes Watershed Council is a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization dedicated to protecting and restoring the rivers and streams of Central Oregon through collaborative projects in river restoration, scientific monitoring and place-based education. Since 2002, we have invested core staff time to build the strong and valuable partnerships with local school districts, landowners, the Deschutes National Forest, and other non-profit organizations that help make our hands-on educational efforts effective and successful for thousands of local students.

We have a small staff of five professionals and our Board of Directors is made up of 18 leaders from the local community representing a very diverse cross-section of the Central Oregon population. The combination of supportive partnerships and a collaborative Board of Directors has enabled us to build a stewardship education program that is well-loved and very well-received by local community members, landowners, teachers, students, and civic leaders.

For additional information, visit: www.restorethedeschutes.org.

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