RICHMOND – Thirty-six students and nine teachers from high schools across Virginia have been selected to participate in the James River Association’s James River Expedition. Now in its second year, the three-part trip, broken into eight-day segments, is an educational adventure down the James River aboard canoes, bateaux, rafts and work boats where they will receive hands-on lessons in river conservation and stewardship.
The Expedition is sponsored by Dominion Resources and Dominion Virginia Power, whose $50,000 grant is underwriting the cost of the trip. The grant is made through The Dominion Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Dominion Resources.
“We are privileged to be a part of the James River Expedition for the second year in a row,” said Virginia M. Board, president of The Dominion Foundation and managing director of Community Affairs for Dominion Resources. “As a new set of students and teachers traverse down the James, they will learn how to protect and preserve the river and its environment, as well as pass that knowledge on to others. This is an investment in the future of the commonwealth.”
The first part of the Expedition, from June 23 to 30, explores the Upper James, from Iron Gate to Lynchburg, and includes students and teachers from Hampton High School, Charlottesville High School and Western Albermarle High School. Later, from July 7 to 14, participants from Varina High School, Albermarle High School and Goochland High School will travel from Lynchburg to Richmond examining the Middle James. The final leg focuses on the Lower James, from Richmond to Hampton, between July 21 and 28, and includes participants from James River High School in Botetout County, J.R. Tucker High School and Hopewell High School.
“The James River Expedition was such a success last year for students and teachers and we’re excited to bring that learning experience to life again in 2012,” said Bill Street, executive director of the James River Association. “The James River is an incredible natural resource, and we’re thrilled to have the opportunity to expose young people at an early age to the responsibility we all have to protect it. We are indebted to our friends at Dominion for making the Expedition possible.”
The teachers and students will participate in a variety of activities over the course of the Expedition, including water-quality testing, macro-invertebrate sampling, wildlife identification, as well as specially arranged tours of riverside farms industrial facilities, power stations and wastewater treatment facilities, and special talks by experts on the river’s history and ecology.
“The Expeditions are conducted by the James River Association as part of an effort to define a consensus-based community vision for the future of the James River,” said Gabe Silver, education and outreach manager at the James River Association.
The three-part James River Expedition will launch from Iron Gate near Covington, Va., on June 23 and conclude in Hampton on July 28. Details on the Expedition’s daily schedule will follow. To follow the Expedition through blog updates, pictures and video, please visit: http://www.jamesriverassociation.org/expedition. More information about Expedition, done in partnership with National Geographic Maps and the Chesapeake Conservancy, is also available at www.EnvisionTheJames.org.
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About the James River Association
Founded in 1976, the James River Association (JRA) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to be the guardian of the James River. Through its four programs, Watershed Restoration; Education and Outreach; River Advocacy; and the Riverkeeper program, JRA works throughout the entire length of the river, helping people of all ages enjoy, appreciate and protect the beauty and health of the James River for future generations to enjoy. For more information about JRA, visit www.jamesriverassociation.org.
Dominion is one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy, with a portfolio of approximately 27, 500 megawatts of generation. Dominion operates the nation's largest natural gas storage system and serves retail energy customers in 15 states. For more information about Dominion, visit the company's website at www.dom.com.
For further information: Cameron McPherson, 804.788.1414, firstname.lastname@example.org --
Daisy Pridgen, Dominion Resources, 804.771.6115, Daisy.Pridgen@dom.com