Coming Together For Clean Water

The Need

Pollution continues to be a serious concern in the Milwaukee River, with our friends at Milwaukee Riverkeeper recently giving the overall health of the river a “C-” on their 2020 report card, improving from the D+ grade in 2019.

The overall health grade of the Milwaukee River is increasing thanks to amazing efforts being made throughout the entire Basin to improve the health quality, but less attention has been paid to rural and suburban parts of the watershed where our Healthy River Communities are located.

We know making a river that is swimmable, fishable, and liveable for all requires the cooperation and effort of every community along its riverbanks, and we want to help do just that.

The Community Rivers Program takes a three-pronged approach to….

Inspire

We protect the things we care about. From kayaking programs to community-wide festivals to watershed tours, we want to make sure everyone sees and feels the incredible value of caring for our Milwaukee River and being a Healthy River Community.

Inform

Partnering communities are provided one-on-one property consultations, property owner workshops, family friendly programming and more that makes the problems (and more importantly, their solutions!) easy to understand and act on.

Engage

Working hand in hand with residents, land owners, elected officials, scientists, and stakeholder groups, we’ll coordinate programs, discussions, trainings, and resources aimed at empowering communities and their residents to implement best practices for keeping their river healthy and clean. This is bottom-up change emanating from community members working together to design a plan that best fits their own town, village, or city.

Communities located in the Upper Milwaukee River Watershed are invited to join the Community Rivers Program and become a Healthy River Community!

5 years

of partnering with rural communities to create healthier ecosystems and communities

5 Healthy River Communities

The Villages of Newburg, Saukville, Grafton, Kewaskum, and Fredonia

“I’ve never kayaked the Milwaukee River before and I was amazed with how beautiful it is. Getting in the river helped me appreciate the need to keep it clean and free of pollutants.”

– CRP Kayaking Participant

120+

programs offered (all communities, all years, combined)

3,100+

resident participants

“We are so grateful for the rain barrel we received, especially this year. It was very easy to install and it is hidden amongst our raspberry bushes!”

– CRP Rain Barrel Workshop Participant

45+

rain barrels installed

30+

stewardship projects completed in communities…everything from river clean-ups to water monitoring to prairie plantings!

50+

hours of land management consultations provided community residents

Upcoming CRP Events

Free Programming For All CRP Villages:

Watershed bus tour

Saturday, October 1st from 9:00-3:00PM meeting at the West Parking Lot
Jump on a bus with the Community Rivers Program to see the Milwaukee River Watershed from a new perspective! This exclusive tour experience highlights local actions being taken for the betterment of the Milwaukee River. This year our stops will include two different farms: The Riveredge Permaculture Farm and Sauve Terre Cattle Farm and end at the Mequon-Thiensville Fish Passage! Lunch will be provided and bus travel space is limited to 13 individuals. We hope you can join us! Registration is available through the Riveredge website.

Water Trivia Night

Thursday, November 17th from 6:00-7:30pm at the Riveredge Barn
Join the Community Rivers Program for a fun evening of water trivia! Show off your nature smarts as you compete with other CRP residents in this competitive water-centered event. Prizes for 1st and 2nd place! Space is limited – so sign-up early! Teams are not necessary but encouraged if you have friends and family that want to participate. Registration cam be found through the Riveredge website.

The Village of Newburg

Storm drain stenciling

Thursday, October 20th from 4:30-6:30PM, location to be determined
As the seasons change, have you ever wondered what happens to the leaves as they fall? We all know littering is bad, but ’leaf litter’ is a separate ecological issue for our waterways. Join the Community Rivers Program to clean out our storm drains! Along the way you will learn more about how fallen leaves deposit an excess of nutrients into our waterways & what you can do to minimize this! Sign up as a group or an individual; we provide the supplies and you provide the manpower! Registration can be found at https://www.riveredgenaturecenter.org/events/

The Village of Saukville

Storm drain stenciling

Thursday, October 13th from 4:30-6:30PM meeting at Veterans Park
As the seasons change, have you ever wondered what happens to the leaves as they fall? We all know littering is bad, but ’leaf litter’ is a separate ecological issue for our waterways. Join the Community Rivers Program to clean out our storm drains! Along the way you will learn more about how fallen leaves deposit an excess of nutrients into our waterways & what you can do to minimize this! Sign up as a group or an individual; we provide the supplies and you provide the manpower! Registration can be found at https://www.riveredgenaturecenter.org/events/

The Village of Grafton

Kayaking the Milwaukee River

Rescheduled to Sunday, October 2nd from 1:00-3:00PM both at Veterans Memorial Park
Paddling takes a mix of knowledge and skills! Village of Grafton residents are invited to join a Riveredge Adventure Guide at Veterans Memorial Park for an unforgettable evening paddling experience that will begin with safety and end with a splash! The best part? Grafton residents will have the chance to learn about their river and do it for free! We will use 1 person kayaks. Ages 10+. Space is limited to 12 people.

Space is still available for Grafton residents to register. Please email Patricia at pgerber@riveredge.us with your names, age, email address, and phone number to be added to the participation roster.

Storm drain stenciling

Tuesday, October 11th from 4:30-6:30PM, location to be determined
As the seasons change, have you ever wondered what happens to the leaves as they fall? We all know littering is bad, but ’leaf litter’ is a separate ecological issue for our waterways. Join the Community Rivers Program to clean out our storm drains! Along the way you will learn more about how fallen leaves deposit an excess of nutrients into our waterways & what you can do to minimize this! Sign up as a group or an individual; we provide the supplies and you provide the manpower! Registration is available through the Grafton Parks and Recreation Activity Guide Booklet.

The Village of Fredonia

Storm drain stenciling

Tuesday, October 18th from 4:30-6:30PM, meeting at Garton Furniture Store at Milwaukee St.
As the seasons change, have you ever wondered what happens to the leaves as they fall? We all know littering is bad, but ’leaf litter’ is a separate ecological issue for our waterways. Join the Community Rivers Program to clean out our storm drains! Along the way you will learn more about how fallen leaves deposit an excess of nutrients into our waterways & what you can do to minimize this! Sign up as a group or an individual; we provide the supplies and you provide the manpower! Registration can be found at https://www.riveredgenaturecenter.org/events/

The Village of Kewaskum

Storm drain stenciling

Tuesday, October 25th from 4:30-6:30PM, meeting at Keller & Riverview Drive corner
As the seasons change, have you ever wondered what happens to the leaves as they fall? We all know littering is bad, but ’leaf litter’ is a separate ecological issue for our waterways. Join the Community Rivers Program to clean out our storm drains! Along the way you will learn more about how fallen leaves deposit an excess of nutrients into our waterways & what you can do to minimize this! Sign up as a group or an individual; we provide the supplies and you provide the manpower! Registration can be found at https://www.riveredgenaturecenter.org/events/

CRP will also be hosting educational tables at community outreach events this summer! Come stop by and see us at farmers markets, music nights, library storytimes, parks and recreation activities, and more!


  • Our Impact

    View the most recent Community Rivers Program Impact Report

    Impact Report 2021-2022
  • Questions? Contact Patricia Scuglik

    Watershed Education Manager and Community Rivers Program Coordinator, pgerber@riveredge.us

    Email Patricia

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Take advantage of all the benefits of a Riveredge membership year round!

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