Education & Outreach
Riverfest is an annual event that is hosted by the Lewis County Chamber of Commerce that paddlers can enjoy. Every year, the mileage is altered with different segments of the Black River. Throughout the length of the paddle, the Lewis County Soil and Water Conservation District sponsor a trivia contest. The contest consists of questions relating to the Black River placed on pool floats. Those who submit their trivia card at the finish get a chance at a basket of items with an array of local items.
Progressive Agriculture Safety Day
The Progressive Agriculture Safety Day is an annual educational event for Lewis County fifth graders that teaches and reinforces important safety lessons. Throughout the day, students rotate through fifteen safety stations of varying topics related to farm and home safety. Each student receives a t-shirt and Goody Bag filled with safety items, first aid kits and literature. To volunteer or donate to our Safety Day, please contact our coordinator, Carla Yaw, at firstname.lastname@example.org . To learn more about the Progressive Agriculture Foundation and Safety Days visit: https://www.progressiveag.org/ .
FFA Land Judging
Land judging serves as a tool to teach youth and young adults about soil science and management. This event is used to teach the importance of basic soil properties and management practices in relation to the care and guidance of soil and water. In conjunction, both Lewis and Jefferson County Soil and Water Conservation Districts coordinate and plan this event every year. This event is alternated between counties each year and consists of both an in-classroom portion as well as a field segment.
Conservation Field Day
Conservation Field Day is an event sponsored by Lewis County Cornell Cooperative Extension that the District participates in each year. Sixth graders from Lewis County schools attend this event that is held at the NYS DEC in Dadville. The District instructs a station on soil erosion utilizing our EmRiver Geomodel. This model demonstrates the principles of river behavior, channel morphology, and sediment transport. Erosion control practices are also taught as ways to prevent sediment and pollutants from entering our waterways.
The District provides a variety of classroom education events when an inquiry occurs. Career fairs for teens, water conservation education days for elementary students and various other conservation education events are held by District staff for Lewis County Schools. If your school is looking to have the District provide some type of classroom education, please give the District a call at (315) 376-6122.
Black River Watershed Conference
The Black River Watershed Conference is held in June each year. Stakeholders (municipal officials, municipal boards, agency representatives and interested citizens) have the opportunity to learn about and discuss issues that face the Black River and its watershed, as well as how to become better stewards of the Black River. Networking is encouraged and everyone is welcome!
Soil Health Workshops
Periodically the District will hold Soil Health Workshops for our local Farmers. The workshops offer a variety of information, each focusing on a different area of interest in soil health research pertaining to agricultural crops and management systems.
The District hosts project tours for our Board of Directors, the Lewis County Legislature and Lewis County Water Quality Coordinating Committee as well as other partner agencies. These tours help keep our leaders and colleagues informed of current District projects and project funding sources.
Black River Trash Bash
Each year, the District pairs up with the Lewis County Water Quality Coordinating Committee and chooses a location for the annual trash bash. Once on site, volunteers will clean the shoreline and as trash is removed, data will be collected about the findings. This data is passed along to the American Littoral Society to develop strategies to fight pollution. In 2021 the group pictured right collected and documented over 70lbs of trash at Eatonville Falls.
Family Farm Day
Family Farm Day is a fun and educational experience for the whole family. It’s also a chance for the public to take a free tour and learn the daily operations of a modern dairy farm while enjoying fun activities. Held at a local farm each year, there are children's games, equipment displays, wagon rides and more. This event is coordinated by Cornell Cooperative Extension, Farm Bureau and the Soil & Water Conservation District.
Ronny Raindrop is the NYS Soil & Water Conservation District's mascot. He helps to promote public awareness of the need for soil, water, and natural resource conservation. Ronny can be found visiting our County Fair and many of our educational events.