Quinnipiac River Watershed Association
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The Quinnipiac River Canoeable Trail is back better than ever! Visit the site at www.qrivertrail.org/

New England Hydropower Corporation Donates $1000


On March 23rd, Chris Conover, New England Hydropower Corporation Chief Marketing Officer presented a check in the amount of $1000 to QRWA President, David James to be used towards environmental education and general fund purposes. 

New England Hydropower Corporation (NEHC) are the builder and operator of the Archimedes screw, water turbine on Hanover Pond in Meriden.   Community involvement are part of both organizations mission.


The Quinnipiac River Watershed Association was awarded a $48,000 Aquatic Science Education Grant by 3M Corporation on Monday, March 21, 2016. 
We are equally proud to include 2 classes of Wallingford's  Lyman Hall students to this year's field trip program. Students will learn how to collect and ID macro invertebrates, conduct water quality experiments, and release trout they raised in the classroom. At the end of the day QRWA volunteers will give the students an introduction to kayaking where they will test their skills on Hanover Pond. The 3M/QRWA/Environmental Education programs have also made the Trout in the Classroom (TIC) and Personalize Learning Experience (PLE) programs available to students at Meriden's Maloney and Platt High Schools.  Summer program to include Solar Youth of New Haven's after school and summer camp students.  







The QRWA Headquarters is located in South Meriden, CT at 540 Oregon Road, 06451.  If you are familiar with the area,our headquarters was once the Meriden Human Society, and formerly the Dossin Beach Bathhouse in 1933. We have restored the building to serve as our headquarters and a regional environmental education center. You may reach us by email at qrwainfo@att.net or by phone at  203-237-2237.





Who Are We and What Do We Do?

The Quinnipiac River Watershed Association provides “hands on” environmental and recreational programs to students in grades K-12 and TWO,  2  day water safety and canoe rescue courses to Quinnipiac University students every September.  We also host semi -Annual River clean up events, and provide paddling lessons, guided tours and recreational activities to families within the watershed. We are regulars at the Quinnipiac and West River festivals, and are well known in CT for our 5 mile downriver canoe and kayak race. We are always seeking volunteers to assist with launching boats, experienced paddlers for public events and to expand our river clean up efforts to other towns in the watershed. 

QRWA Receives 3M Environmental Grant - Grant will be used for 3M/QRWA High School Environmental Education Programs. (photos from May 13, field trip to Hanover Pond)

The Quinnipiac River Watershed Association received a $20,000 grant from 3M to enhance its Biodiversity and Ecology Education Programs for the Quinnipiac River. QRWA and 3M continue their relationship by adding a partnership with Meriden High Schools in providing environmental education programs where students in the watershed and beyond will be able to participate in field trips, classroom activities, hands on projects, and independent studies, that will connect them to the environment, the community and the river.

With the financial support of 3M, QRWA and Maloney High School Environmental Science teacher Mark Britton will lead the project and invite the other area high schools to participate in these programs and throughout the school year. The programs will be offered during regular school hours utilizing the schools buses to transport students to site locations. With these educational programs students will be able to participate in experiments to support theories and concepts explained in the classroom. The QRWA Headquarters, located on the shore of Hanover Pond, the Quinnipiac River and the Meriden Linear Trail provides the perfect staging area for field trips, hands-on projects and water quality studies. 

The following includes the 3M/QRWA High School Environmental Education Programs but not limited to:

  • Expanded Rapid Bioassessment by Volunteers (RBV) 
  • Independent Study/Personalized Learning Experience
  • Create a self- guided nature trail at Hanover Pond
  • Create a 100’ x 30’ educational riparian buffer
  • Design & Design & Construct a catamaran research vessel 
  • Trout in the Classroom Program

3M Purification Inc. is located in Meriden, CT at 400 Research Parkway.  For more information about 3Mgives visit www.3Mgives.com    On behalf of the QRWA board of directors we would like to extend our heartfelt thanks to Joe Struble at 3M Purification Inc. in Meriden for his continued encouragement and support of the QRWA and its mission.


Quinnipiac Watershed Base Plan Updates (QWBP)

As part of the ongoing efforts to improve water quality in the Quinnipiac River watershed, we want to make sure you are kept apprised of various activities going on and continued opportunities for participation in these watershed activities.  We welcome your participation in this project. This is a ten year plan in which all towns in the Quinnipiac Watershed should engage. 

The QRWA Steering Committee met on June 24th, 2014 to discuss the proposed projects in the Quinnipiac Watershed Base Plan. Members of the committee outlined a "plan for the plan", and have done an outreach to the town leaders in which projects have been sited in the plan. QRWA will be seeking funding opportunities and engaging town leaders to participate in discussions about the projects. If you are interested in serving on the committee, or would like a copy of the final plan you may refer to the tab on this website labeled "watershed news" and then click on the watershed base plan.

This project is funded in part by the CTDEEP through an EPA Section 319 Nonpoint Source Grant, with additional outreach support from The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven through the Quinnipiac River Fund. Fuss & O'Neill, Inc. was retained to lead the development of the watershed based plan, working with a Project Steering Committee (QRWA, CTDEEP, and EPA) and a Watershed Stakeholders Group consisting of representatives from the watershed municipalities, government organizations, educational institutions, non-profit organizations, and others who live and work within the watershed. City and Town staff and volunteers are currently working with the Quinnipiac River Watershed Association to revise the plan and the latest updated information on your watershed and future actions is available. For a copy of the final base plan you may refer to tab labeled "watershed news" , and then click on the watershed base plan.  

Additional Information on the Q River

Boating Information along the Q River

River Gage

  • Click here for a real time USGS water level gage of the river in Wallingford, Connecticut.
  • Click here for a water level gage of the river in Southington, Connecticut.

David James, President of the QRWA and Ginny Chirsky, Director of Grants and Education, accepted the grant on behalf of the river conservation organization located in Meriden, CT  Aquatic Science Awareness Program (ASAP) will allow us to expand our current high school programs to elementary grades K-5 with a focus on 5th grade students at Meriden's Ben Franklin and Hanover Schools.  

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Daily Announcements

Check out the CHECK Out QRWA Events Calendar now located at the bottom of this page. There might be a few updates for 2021!!

41st DOWNRIVER CLASSIC , Sunday, May 16th, 2021.  Canoes are available FREE of Charge, but must be reserved. Contact Dan Pelletier 860-754-8702.  Scroll down to events calendar for race details.

Next Speaker Series will be on Thursday, May 27th at 7:00 p.m. please join us via ZOOM for a talk on the Connecticut Bobcat. Melissa Ruszczyk will briefly discuss some history and biology of bobcats in CT before jumping into the fascinating, on-going bobcat research that is being conducted in our state. Melissa is a wildlife biologist who has worked on a variety of research projects throughout the U.S. Currently, she works with the CT DEEP's Furbearer/Bear Program and conducts research and management of furbearing species, such and bobcats and black bears. In her free time, she enjoys hiking with her dog and shed hunting. Join Zoom Meeting https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82046584328?pwd=Y3phcFZDeXlCd21SbGJmdzJhMEZxdz09

A New Home for Bats Welcome to the Watershed - In its ongoing efforts to restore the watershed to ecological balance, the QRWA found an ally in Platt High School’s CT Climate Action Club to provide much needed habitat for Connecticut’s stressed bat population.  In recent years the numbers of these ecologically important and beneficial creatures have diminished due to habitat destruction and the ravages of white nose syndrome.

A collaborative effort “To the Bat Cave, Students” was speared-headed and managed by students who enlisted the collaboration of experts from the ecological community, the CT DEEP, the Meriden Parks and Recreation Department as well as QRWA and several of its members.  Students also raised all the funds for the project through Donor’s Choose – within a week!The result, after a year much effort and many challenges, is a bat house standing tall along the Quinnipiac River Dossin Beach that can potentially house nearly a thousand bats. 

Bats are among the most beneficial and misunderstood animals on earth. More than 500 species of crop plants and 530 kinds of flowers rely on bats for insect control, seed dispersal and/or pollination. In the U.S. alone, farmers save an estimated 50 billion dollars a year in agricultural pest control provided by insectivorous bats, including those that call Connecticut home. Each year, on warm nights, our neighborhood bats consume billions of insects that can carry diseases such as West Nile Virus and Malaria and those that destroy crops in farms and backyard gardens.

Unfortunately, due to many factors such as habitat loss, pesticide use, climate change and a devastating fungal disease, white nose syndrome, the number of North American bats is in steep decline. 

The Platt Students recognized the importance of restoring the dwindling bat population and that the erection of a bat house where bats can roost and give birth to their tiny pups could make a significant difference. Inspired by the vision of bat conservationist Maureen Heidtmann, the students and their instructor, Zachary Corey, eagerly rose to the challenge. After a great deal of perseverance and hard work by the students and a crew of innovative, environmentally savvy volunteers, the project is now complete, looking great, and ready to welcome Meriden’s beneficial bats. For more information about bats click here

QRWA 2021 Spring Cleanup Event: In lieu of a traditional Spring River Cleanup, this year we are holding a month-long event throughout April, in which our volunteers can clean in and around the Quinnipiac River / Hanover Pond at their own pace and on whatever date and time is preferred for each individual. See events calendar below for details.

Fishing Season Officially Opened on March 4, 2021. Although our annual family event of stocking the upper river at Red Bridge had to be cancelled again this year due to COVID 19, CT DEEP has continued to stock the Q River!

Quinnipiac Downriver Classic for 2021 is scheduled for Sunday, May 16th - see events calendar below for details. 
Wildlife Speaker Series: Third speaker series scheduled for Wednesday, May 26, upon confirmation of time and topic information will be posted on this website and QRWA Group Page and general email to those on our data base.

QRWA president David James and QRWA member/volunteer Emily Picard have volunteered their time to participate on a panel for "Meriden Resources Inventory" (NRI)   The purpose of NRI is to compile and describe important, naturally occurring resources within Meriden's town limits. It will support efforts to protect, restore, and enhance the environment as well as promoting greater appreciation and enjoyment of nature.

To find out more information about NRI and how you may participate please click here for their website. You may also follow along on their Facebook page.

Our Annual Holiday Social and meeting were cancelled due to COVID 19 and based on the low response from Survey Monkey to attend our annual meeting via Zoom the QRWA Board of Directors held the annual meeting on January 21, 2021 via Zoom; officers re elected to serve on the board for 2021 are David James, Virginia Chirsky, Michael Mordarski and Peter Picone as our longest standing board member and past president.  

Attached is a copy of the Holiday Notice/Newsletter that was sent to our membership. Annual  meeting reports and financials may be obtained by request using the "contact" tab located in the upper right hand corner of this page.

River Alliance presentation on the Water Chestnut and our spring and fall river clean up events were cancelled due to COVID 19

Environmental Education Programs for 2020 have been CANCELLED due to COVID 19

Plans for the fall 2021 will include students participating in the Trout in the Classroom program under the 3M/QRWA/ASAP Grant Program with visit the QRWA Regional Education Center whereby students conduct "hands on" experiments in the Lions Club Learning Center Classroom, collect samples from Sodom Brook, learn how to paddle and fish, observe wildlife on Hanover Pond, and walk along both linear trails to learn to identify flora and fauna.  

Volunteers are needed to assist students collecting "river bugs" and to help with identifying their finds once back in the classroom. Volunteers may contact Ginny Chirsky at ginnychirsky@att.net - Our continue thanks and appreciation to 3M for the funding to make these environmental education programs possible.


Watch Video of Ms. Robles 5th Grade Class Hanover School Field Trip May 5th, 2017

Students visited QRWA to participate in how to collect and ID macro invertebrates from the river resulting in lessons about the water quality in the Quinnipiac River. Thank You 3M for the funds to continue with this work. 

QRWA Butterfly and Bee Habitat

From the onset the B&B "garden" was established as a sanctuary for pollinators, this year with the assistance of Master Gardener, Liz Santamaria, we have begun the revamping of what was once referred to as the "garden" into a "habitat", which more accurately reflects our original objective.

Liz was presented a Certificate of Appreciation to acknowledging her commitment and dedication to the QRWA Butterfly & Bee Habitat (see newsletter above for photo.)  

The habitat has been divided into sections and has been adopted by several Master Gardeners. Anyone wishing to volunteer for this "on going" project should contact Becky Martorelli at 203-213-4366.

Turtle Rescue and Vet Information

If you find an injured or healthy turtle in need of assistance please contact Deb Mason at 203-494-7610. If more immediate attention is needed Kensington Vet will take injured box turtles. They are located at 977 Farmington Avenue, Berlin, CT they are open from 8 to 5. Phone number is 860-828-7736.