The annual vote for Pennsylvania River of the Year opened to the public today. In addition to carrying the title in 2020, the river that draws the most public votes will receive a $10,000 leadership grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to help fund River of the Year activities.
Waterways nominated for 2020 are Brandywine Creek, Buffalo Creek, Connoquenessing Creek, Lackawanna River and Ohio River.
Nominations were based on each waterway’s conservation needs and successes, as well as celebration plans if the nominee is voted 2020 River of the Year.
In cooperation with DCNR, selection of public voting choices is overseen by the Pennsylvania Organization for Watersheds and Rivers, an affiliate of the Pennsylvania Environmental Council.
The online public selection process continues to be increasingly popular as it enters its 10th year. The public can vote for a favorite state waterway today through Friday, January 17, at the Pennsylvania River of the Year website.
The public is invited to again vote online for the 2020 Pennsylvania River of the Year, choosing from among five waterways nominated throughout the state.
”Regardless of the outcome, this competition builds community support around our rivers and streams, putting them in the public limelight,” said Cindy Adams Dunn, secretary of DCNR. “This annual undertaking is much more than a public vote gauging popularity of Pennsylvania waterways. All have truly unique attributes; offer incredible recreational opportunities; and bring significant boosts to local economies.”
The River of the Year title has been presented annually since 1983. Public voting was added in 2011.
After a waterway is chosen for the annual honor, local groups implement a year-round slate of activities and events to celebrate the river, including a paddling trip, or sojourn.
In addition to the $10,000 grant, the organization nominating the winning river will receive help from POWR and DCNR in creating a commemorative poster celebrating the River of the Year.
Brandywine Creek flows through Chester and Delaware counties in Pennsylvania, and a bit of the state of Delaware. Buffalo Creek flows through Armstrong and Butler counties. Connoquenessing Creek flows through Beaver, Butler and Lawrence counties. Lackawanna River flows through Susquehanna and Wayne counties. Ohio River flows through Allegheny and Beaver counties in Pennsylvania, and the state of West Virginia, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky.