Environmental conservation is not an individual responsibility, but a collective one. The residents of Greater Longfellow consistently prioritize the preservation of the neighborhood’s natural resources as an important part of our work as a neighborhood association. Greater Longfellow has so many incredible natural resources and environmental gems like the Mississippi River Gorge and Minnehaha Falls in our community, and it’s up to all of us to work to keep them clean, healthy and accessible.
Our Environment and River Gorge Committee is a dedicated task force working to make the environment in our neighborhood one that is available and welcoming to all, both now and in the future. So many people in our community have shown up to support those efforts through volunteering, participating and talking with us about what they want that future to look like.
We’ve been partnering with organizations like Friends of the Mississippi River, Freshwater Society and Adopt-a-Drain to find better ways to engage with our community and preserve our surroundings' natural beauty.
Recently, our ERG Committee went on a Lock and Dam Tour hosted by Friends of the Mississippi River. Right now, some of the infrastructure built in the 20th century to transform the river for commercial and industrial purposes is no longer useful. We have a chance to reimagine our relationship with the river again. FMR is studying issues around the dam on the Mississippi River and the answer to the question, should we remove the dams on the Mississippi River?
What we do here will affect the Twin Cities and all communities downstream and may have an even more significant ripple effect than we can imagine, FMR states.
“I think that staying engaged and making sure people are turning up and that people are staying involved and giving feedback. We want people who will be affected by this engaging with it, and we want them to really have a say in what their river access looks like,” said Maddie Miller, FMR Grassroots Organizing Coordinator.
Friends of the Mississippi River is partnering with Macalester College to host free walking, biking, kayaking and boat tours of the locks and dams this summer. You can find more information on that on their website (fmr.org). We’ve also been working with Freshwater Society and Adopt-a-Drain on clean-ups and educational initiatives on how we best care for the planet on a local level. To be connected to the environment around us is to be connected to the community. We will have several more clean-ups this year, and if you’re interested in getting involved contact firstname.lastname@example.org or check out Adopt-a-Drain’s website for a list of other cleanups happening in and around the city. We want to celebrate what’s around us and build community through events like Share the Park and Share the River Gorge. Connect with your neighbors as we connect with the landscape. We share this planet, so let’s take care of it and each other.
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