Volunteers with the Rouge Rescue will gather in West Bloomfield on Saturday, June 2 to help more than a dozen other communities clean-up the Rouge River. And the Dearborn-based nonprofit is in need of volunteers.
The 26th annual event takes place at 35 sites in 20 communities throughout metro Detroit. Times and activities vary by site.
According to Friends of the Rouge, the Rouge Rescue helps to decrease the impact of storm events and improve water quality by stabilizing stream banks and installing native plants to filter out pollutants.
Rouge Rescue began as a trash clean-up, and evolved to include more restoration activities as conditions improved.
“People don’t realize the positive impact just one day of working along the river can have,” said River Restoration Program Manager for Friends of the Rouge Cyndi Ross. “It’s great to see residents take ownership of the river, it helps change the mindset that it’s someone else’s problem. It’s also a great way to meet your neighbors and have fun!”
Each site includes one or a combination of activities: trash removal, planting native plants, log-jam opening, removing invasive plants, educational workshops and nature walks.
Volunteers should wear long pants and long sleeves to protect themselves from poison ivy. Helpful items to bring include water, snacks, shoes or boots you don't mind getting dirty, hat, sunscreen, bug spray and a change of clothes (just in case). Gloves will be provided along with “Rouge Rescue ‘12” T-shirts as available.
Many of the sites are family-friendly. A complete site list is posted at therouge.org.
, 3100 Lone Pine Road, Just west of Middlebelt on Lone Pine Rd.
Volunteer Projects: Native Planting
Volunteers needed: After school project for students.
Other local Rouge Rescue locations
1. Douglas Evans Nature Preserve, Evergreen Road on west side of road between 13 Mile and 14 Mile Roads, Beverly Hills.
Time: 10 a.m.-12 noon
Volunteer Projects: Focus on invasive plant removal and refuse removal as necessary. Nature walk and environmental education, clean up and invasive plant removal/weeding activities.
Sponsoring Organization: The Village of Beverly Hills
Phone: 248.646.6404 ext. 229
2. Riverside Park, Riverside Drive just east of Evergreen Road, Beverly Hills.
Time: 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Volunteer Project: Rouge Green Corridor Public Workshop, “Planting Native Gardens along Riverbanks."
Sponsoring Organization: Six Rivers Regional Land Conservancy
1. 1390 Quarton Road, Bloomfield Hills; North side of Quarton Road just west of Woodward Ave.
Time: 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Volunteer Projects: Native planting along streambank
2. Quarton Lake Park, Northwest corner of Maple and Baldwin Rd, Birmingham.
Time: 9 a.m.–12 p.m.
Volunteer Projects: Park clean-up and planting of native plants in the Birmingham Urban Habitat Garden as part of the Rouge Green Corridor Public Workshop, “Planting Native Gardens along Riverbanks." Will be planting near the waterfall.
Sponsoring Organizations: City of Birmingham; Six Rivers Regional Land Conservancy.
Phone: 248.530.1642 (City of Birmingham) and 248.601.2816 (Six Rivers)
E-mail: Cfolk@ci.birmingham.mi.us and firstname.lastname@example.org