Community invited to explore, discuss Mill Creek

The Mill Creek Alliance will host its annual Canoes & Conversations on Saturday to provide an experience-driven look at the potential of the 28.4-mile waterway.

Now in its fifth year, the family friendly luncheon is taking place at the organization’s Woodlawn campus at 10050 Woodlawn Blvd., with activities expanding to parts of Wyoming, Lockland and Reading along the Mill Creek.

From 9 a.m. until about noon, guests can register to canoe the West Fork Mill Creek, go on nature walk, ride their bike with a group along the existing and proposed Triangle Trail, perform a stream water quality/habitat assessment or participate in a Highfield Discovery Garden outing in Glenwood Gardens.

A stretch of the Mill Creek in Reading.

There will be other things to do as well – from an archaeological dig and building bird feeders craft to highlight the natural beauty of the area to what organizers are calling a “Global Water Dance” performance.

The overall goal is to showcase the value and potential of the Mill Creek.

“Canoes & Conversations fertilizes our work,” said Dave Schmitt, Mill Creek Alliance’s executive director. “By bringing together elected officials, partners, community leaders and residents, we expand and strengthen our shared vision of what a restored Mill Creek stream corridor can mean for the 450,000 Greater Cincinnati residents who live in its watershed.”

Building community around the Mill Creek

The theme of this year’s event is “Happy Trails,” which will highlight both land and water efforts to increase recreation and transportation taking place along the Mill Creek. A focal point of recent efforts is the Triangle Trail, an in-progress 40-plus-mile pathway that will eventually link to three Great Parks sites, 14 suburban communities and the regional “CROWN” urban trail network.

The luncheon’s keynote speaker is Wade Johnson, executive director of Tri-State Trails.

Over 200 guests have already confirmed participation in the event, including elected officials from the state and local levels.

“The Alliance has worked for nearly 30 years to restore and protect the Mill Creek watershed,” Schmitt said. “Our work has only been successful thanks to the many dedicated community partners and volunteers who have helped us ‘shift the current,’ changing the Mill Creek’s narrative from ‘irretrievable’ to ‘hidden gem.’”

Mill Creek Alliance

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