Narrow River Preservation Association
Monday, August 21, 2017
NRPA: Working since 1970 to preserve, protect, and restore Narrow River and its watershed.

2013 Front Page

Here are some of the pictures and articles that appeared on the Home page during 2013:

Jon Boothroyd Keynotes
2013 Annual Meeting

What Will Happen When the Real 100 Year Storm Hits?

On October 30, 2012, the surge from Superstorm Sandy inundated the salt marshes and other areas along Narrow River, closed Middlebridge, and prompted many to refer to the event as a 100-year storm.

But "Sandy was no 100-year storm. Rhode Island only received a glancing blow." So said coastal geologist Jon Boothroyd at the 2013 NRPA Annual Meeting on October 3 when he presented The Pettaquamscutt Estuary: Climate Change. Jon went on to illustrate how a storm of the magnitude of the 1938 Hurricane (which was a 100-year storm) would cause far more significant flooding.

Starting with a primer on the geology of the watershed, Jon used aerial photographs and inundation maps to show the impact of Sandy and earlier storms on the river and the Rhode Island coast. He then discussed how future coastal storms and sea level rise will combine to cause even greater flooding than Sandy.

Slide from Pettaquamscutt Estuary: Climate Changeshows predicted inundation at Circuit Drive in Narragansett from a five-foot sea-level rise.


View all of the maps and photographs in Jon's keynote presentation. 

Rosemary Smith Receives Friend of the River Award at 43rd Annual Meeting

NRPA President Richard Grant presents Rosemary Carty Smith of Narragansett with the 2013 W.E.R. La Farge Memorial Friend of the River Award at the 43rd NRPA Annual Meeting on October 3.

The award recognizes Rosemary’s work in “founding and coordinating the On Pettaquamscutt Winter Speaker Series and her active participation in many others areas of service to Narrow River and its watershed.”

On Pettaquamscutt: Presentations on the Environment and the History of the Narrow River Watershed is joint project of NRPA, Friends of Canonchet Farm, South County Museum and the Maury Loontjens Memorial Library.

In January, the series begins its third seasonof monthly Sunday afternoon presentations at the library.

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(Photo: Ben Rauh)

Kathleen O'Brien Wins the 2013 Kayak Raffle

Every July, Kathleen O'Brien of Wickford stops by the NRPA table at the Wickford Art Festival and buys three tickets for our annual Kayak Raffle. By the time of the drawing at the 2013 Annual Meeting, her odds of winning the kayak were 1/447.

Two days later, when she took delivery of the Old Town Heron XT9 from NRPA Program Coordinator David Smith, the odds of enjoying the new boat were very good and the chance of her buying tickets at next year's Wickford Arts Festival was almost certain.

(Photo: Rosemary Smith)

Many Thanks

Many thanks to Jason Considine of Narrow River Kayaks for once again donating the kayak for the annual NRPA Kayak Raffle.

Nature Photography 101

On Saturday, August 17, NRPA Board member and photographer John McNamara led Nature Photography 101 at the Middlebridge Education and Activity Center, a short course in photographing wildlife in one of the most picturesque waterways in Southern New England.

John encouraged participants to post their photographs on the NRPA Facebook page.Contact John if you have photos of the river you would like to share.

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Full Buck Moon Paddle

Many thanks to Jason Considine and the crew at Narrow River Kayaks for putting on the Sixth Annual Pettaquamscutt Paddle on July 21.

This year's event featured a guided paddle of lower Narrow River during the waxing of July's Full Buck Moon, also called the Full Thunder Moon and Full Hay Moon. In addition to a beautiful moon rise and sun set, the more than 40 participants were treated to water-level views of egrets, heron, osprey and other wildlife feeding along the river.

Click here to see more photos of the paddle and the wildlife courtesy of John McNamara. 

Discovering What Lives in the River

On June 15, scientists young and old explored the shoreline and marshes at Middlebridge to discover "What Lives in the River." This was the first in a series of educational events sponsored by the Narrow River Land Trust and NRPA in cooperation with Narragansett Parks and Recreation. Check out all the photos in the What Lives in the River Album on Facebook. 

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Four Awarded 2013

NRPA Lesa Meng Scholarship


Zachary Zuchowski (left) and Ben Lee
Narragansett High School 


Rachel Moyer (left)and Chintanya Gopu
South Kingstown High School

Narrow River Preservation Association has awarded the 2013 NRPA Lesa Meng College Scholarships to Narragansett High School graduates Benjamin Lee and Zachary Zuchowsk and to South Kingstown High School graduates Chintanya Gopu and Rachel Moyer.

Since 1993 NRPA has awarded college scholarships to seniors graduating from high schools in the Narrow River Watershed as part of its Youth Environmental Education Program. The scholarships, which are given in memory of former NRPA Board member Lesa Meng, are awarded based on the student’s environmentally oriented activities in and out of high school, the quality of an original essay on the river, science teacher's recommendation, and academic achievement in math and science courses.

Here's more about the 2013 scholarship recipients:

Ben Lee will study biology at St. Mary’s College of Maryland in the fall. He plans to major in biology. Ben has been a river monitor in the NRPA Watershed Watch program and volunteered with the annual Narrow River Turnaround Swim. He was the Captain of Narragansett High School’s National Ocean Science Bowl Team from 2011 to 2013 and a member of the band and cross country team.
Zachary Zuchowski, a varsity soccer player at Narragansett High School, will attend Brown University in the fall, where he plans to major in either molecular biology or biochemistry. For his senior project on human actions and the effect on marine ecosystems, Zach studied and created ecosystem biospheres from fish, snails and algae collected from Narrow River.

Chintanya Gopu will attend Northeastern University in the fall, where she plans to major in Environmental Engineering. Chintanya was a volunteer at the Environmental Protection Agency for two summers and was an active Earth Day participant. At SKHS, she played varsity tennis and participated in numerous school plays.

Rachel Moyer, who is interested in a career in medicine, will attend Lehigh University in the fall. Rachel was a Save the Bay volunteer and a counselor at the Save the Bay Camp. At SKHS, Rachel was a member of the drama club and literary journal, and had a major role in reorganizing the school sailing club.

Save the Bay Honors Annette DeSilva for Advocacy on Narrow River

Save the Bay honored NRPA Board Member Annette DeSilva at its Annual Meeting on May 23 with the 2013 Allison J. Walsh Award for Outstanding Environmental Advocacy. The award recognizes Annette for her leadership of NRPA’s River Watch program since its beginning in 1991.

Immediately after receiving the award, Annette took to the podium to thank the hundreds of volunteer river monitors that have tested the river for more than two decades. Under her direction, the volunteers test water quality at 14 locations in the Narrow River Watershed bi-weekly from May through October under the URI Watershed Watch program.

Annette is the Assistant Executive Secretary of the University-National Oceanographic Laboratory System at the URI Bay Campus.


Veronica Berounsky to Serve on Rivers Council

On June 4, 2013, the Rhode Island Senate confirmed Governor Lincoln Chafee’s appointment of NRPA Board member Dr. Veronica Berounsky to the Rhode Island Rivers Council.

The Rivers Council was created by state statute to coordinate efforts to improve and preserve the quality of the state’s rivers and other water bodies and to develop plans to increase river use. The Council is charged with coordinating state policies to protect rivers and watersheds and strengthening local watershed councils as partners in river and watershed protection.

NRPA is one of nine watershed organization designated by the Rivers Council and over the years has received enabling grants from the council for various initiatives, most recently to cosponsor a series of teacher workshops with the Wood-Pawcatuck Watershed Association.

Veronica will serve as one of three Rivers Council members “with conservation organization experience,” as specified by statute. 

And conservation organization experience she certainly has. Veronica, a marine biologist with the URI Graduate School of Oceanography, has been an active member of Narrow River Preservation Association since 1990, with special focus on NRPA's educational mission. She has also been volunteer monitor in the NRPA Watershed Watch program and an organizer of the annual Narrow River Turnaround Swim.

Water Quality Trends and Issues

The featured presentation at the NRPA Annual Meeting on October 4, 2012 was a report on the 20 years of water quality data collected by the Narrow River Watershed Watch program in conjunction with URI Watershed Watch. Using a PowerPoint® slide show, Board members Dr. Veronica Berounsky and Annette DeSilva focused on testing for bacteria, specifically fecal coliforms, and nutrients, using nitrogen measurements as an example, at sites spanning the river to illustrate trends. The high levels of bacteria at Middlebridge generated significant discussion, especially with the purchase of the Eddy property discussed earlier in the evening. Click one of the links below to view and download the full presentation:


Bay Friendly Backyards

Save the Bay has published a wonderful pamphlet called Bay Friendly Backyards, which describes best practices for lawn care and landscaping to reduce the harmful levels of nutrients and bacteria that find their way into Narragansett Bay and the rivers that flow into it.


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NRPA is a member of the R.I. Rivers Council and has served as the Designated Watershed Council for Narrow River since 2002.


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