Blackstone River Watershed Association
Blackstone River Watershed Association
In This Issue


BRWA Annual Member Appreciation Event

6th Annual Blackstone Valley Riverways Cleanup

BCC Canal Work Days



Ground Broken on Blackstone River Greenway Project


Citizens Lawsuit Against Entergy/Pilgrim

BRWA Online
About the BRWA


Issue 34 October 2012

How innocent were these
Trees, that in mist-green May,
Blown by a prospering breeze,
Stood garlanded and gay;
Who now in sundown glow
Of serious colour clad
Confront me with their show
As though resigned and sad.

Trees who unwhispering stand
Umber and bronze and gold,
Pavilioning the land
For one grown tired and old;
Elm, chestnut, beech, and lime,
I am merged in you, who tell
Once more in tones of time
Your foliaged farewell.

October Trees - Siegfried Sassoon

Here are a couple of tips from for reusable replacements for common disposable food items:

Plastic Straws – Replace plastic straws with reusable stainless steel straws. One brand is the RSVP Endurance Drink Straws available from several online retailers.

Plastic Sandwich Bags – Replace plastic bags with reusable organic cotton sandwich or snack bags like those from Graze Organic.

For more hints go to Reusable Replacements: Eating On-the-Go.


BRWA Annual Member Appreciation Event and Business Meeting Sign-Purgatory Chasm State Reservation
The BRWA will hold its Annual Member Appreciation and Meeting on Saturday, November 3rd from 1-4pm at Purgatory Chasm State Reservation in Sutton, MA.

Susan Thomas, Program Assistant for the BRWA, and Natural History Guide for Mass Audubon at Broad Meadow Brook, will guide us on a scenic hike from the hemlock and oak groves of this magnificent park past wetlands and streams down to “Little Purgatory” – a magical spot often overlooked by visitors who come to view the Park’s famous name-sake chasm. Along the way, Susan will share her knowledge of the plants and wildlife of the area as well as the historical and geological features of this renowned state reservation.

The hike will be preceded by a very short business meeting during which the Board will give a brief overview of the past year’s accomplishments and upcoming year’s goals. Members will then vote on Board positions for the upcoming year.

Following the hike, we will all return to the visitor center for warm cider, homemade apple crisp, and other delights. We hope you can join us!

Please RSVP by email to or by phone at 508-278-5200.

Note: This event is open only to members and their guests.
Been putting off becoming a BRWA member? It’s easy to Join.

For more information or directions, visit the Purgatory Chasm State Reservation website or email


6th Annual Blackstone Valley Riverways Cleanup Assumption school student at Fisherville
BRWA Team Leaders worked with volunteers at six sites within the Blackstone River Watershed including the Mumford River in Uxbridge, the Blackstone River and Canal at River Bend Farm in Uxbridge, Plummer’s Landing in Northbridge, the Blackstone River by Goretti’s Supermarket in Millbury, by the Fisherville dam in Grafton, and the Quinsigamond River in Grafton.

The volunteers worked both on land and on water and included a group of scuba divers at Plummer’s Landing. The combined trash removed from the watershed by these volunteers included 46 large garbage bags of general litter, eight tires, a truck load of construction wood, a bathroom sink, furniture, tools, rusted metal, and a car battery. Dona & Mike in canoe at Plummers Landing cleanup

Following the cleanup, volunteers gathered at River Bend Visitor Center for warm cider and refreshments generously donated by Stop & Shop in Grafton, Shaws in Northbridge, and Hannaford in Uxbridge.

The BRWA thanks the divers from Cuzins Outdoors in Whitinsville, the Assumption School in Millbury, Cub Scout Pack 106 of Grafton, and all the volunteers who made the event a success.


BCC Canal Work Days

The Blackstone Canal Conservancy is sponsoring two mornings of trail clearing and trash removal along the towpath of the canal in the Blackstone River & Canal Heritage State Park.
  • November 17th: BCC Workday. (Work to include floating debris pick up from the canal.)
  • December 8th: BCC Workday.
All who are interested in preserving the canal are invited to meet at 9 AM at Plummer’s Landing, west parking area, Church St. Northbridge. For more information, call Dave Barber at 508-478-4918 or email at


Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor Commission Sunsets

Twenty-five years after it was first created by Congress, authorization of the John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor Commission expired on October 12. This will not affect the designation of the Blackstone Valley as a National Heritage Corridor or the legislation introduced last year to establish a National Historical Park.

The Corridor Commission formally transferred its responsibilities to the nonprofit organization Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor, Inc., which was created to provide continuity for the programs, ongoing projects and work with the Corridor’s many partners.

See the full aticle for more information.


11/3 BRWA Annual Member Appreciation Event and Business Meeting   rsvp
11/8 Trout Unlimited, Central MA Chapter Meeting
"Why We Should Care About Wild Trout Streams" presented by Russ Cohen, 7-9pm, Mass Audubon Broad Meadow Brook Sanctuary, Worcester  
11/10 BRC Water Quality Sampling  
11/15 America Recycles Day   info
11/17 BCC Workday. 9am at Plummer’s Landing, Church St. Northbridge.   info
11/17 National Homemade Bread Day   Mmmm, Bread
12/8 BCC Workday. 9am at Plummer’s Landing, Church St. Northbridge.   info



Ground Broken on Blackstone River Greenway Project Officials with shovels-2012 Greenway groundbreaking
On October 12, officials broke ground on a segment of the Blackstone River Greenway Project, a 48-mile greenway corridor from Worcester to Providence. After decades of planning and false starts, work has finally resumed on the Massachusetts portion of the Greenway. This segment will run from the Rhode Island state line and extend through Blackstone, Millville and Uxbridge. Seven bridges and one tunnel will be rehabilitated in this phase of the project which is scheduled to be completed in the Fall of 2014.



Citizens Lawsuit Against Entergy/Pilgrim
A group of Massachusetts citizens have sent a letter to Entergy Corporation and the US EPA notifying them of their intent to sue over alleged violations of the Clean Water Act at the Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station in Plymouth.

According to the Cape Cod Bay Watch website, the following violations relating to pollution levels and monitoring:
  • Unlawfully dumping the chemical tolytriazole without a valid permit, and in violation of the permit condition that says no discharging chemicals resulting from cleaning or washing condensers. Tolytriazole is a corrosion inhibitor that can harm marine environments.
  • Unlawfully dumping suspended solids, oil, and grease from an unpermitted storm drain.
  • Dumping excessive amounts of chlorine.
  • Failing to properly monitor and report the pH levels, chlorine levels and temperature of the water dumped into the Bay.
In addition, Entergy is charged with fish kills related to the once-through cooling system employed at the Pilgrim plant.

Websites to visit for more information:


Views & opinions expressed in linked websites do not necessarily state or reflect those of the BRWA.

Your input is crucial to this eNewsletter. If you have a local watershed-related story, information of interest to our subscribers, or comments about this publication, drop an email to the editor.

The Blackstone River Watershed Association (BRWA) has a mission to engage, educate and advocate for improved water quality in the Blackstone River Watershed; its objectives are to:
  • Engage the public in watershed stewardship activities,
  • Educate members, supporters and watershed residents on watershed protection strategies, and
  • Improve the water quality and esthetics of the Blackstone River Watershed’s water bodies.
The BRWA eNewsletter is published monthly by the Blackstone River Watershed Association. BRWA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

Editor: Michael Sperry
Mailing address: BRWA, 271 Oak Street Uxbridge, MA 01569
Phone: 508-278-5200  Web:

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