By Jim Hagerty
River Action, the group that spearheads stewardship of the Mississippi River in the Quad Cities, will be busy this summer!
The group has an action-packed scheduled this year, including the famous Floatzilla event!
Following is a complete River Action schedule for 2014:
• Ride The Tide Route — Sunday, June 15. Pedal the basic route of 20 miles or follow the signs for rides of up to 60 miles. Begin at The Freight House in Davenport, Iowa, proceed to Leach Park, Bettendorf, and cross the Mississippi River to Moline, Ill. There, the route continues on the Celebration Belle riverboat!
Those crossing by bridge will cross Arsenal Island, and continue to the suggested turnaround at The Quarter, returning to Davenport via Arsenal Bridge or the Centennial Bridge (open until 3 p.m.).
The 2014 Summer Education Series
• Channel Cat Talks — Sessions are $12 each and take place on the Channel Cat Water Taxi. Rain or shine, no refunds. In case of bad weather, the group will still meet at the Channel Cat, Celebration Belle Landing. If a session is called off, a rain date will be scheduled. All Channel Cat Talks are from 9 to 10:45 a.m.
June 30, “Years of River Action,” with Kathy Wine (River Action); June 12, “Waterfowl of the Mississippi River” with Bob Clevenstine (USFW); June 17, 19, “Native Americans and the Mississippi River” with Christina Kastell (Putnam Museum); and June 24, 26, “Tales of a Riverboat Captain” with Harry Pelton (Riverboat Captain).
July 1, 3, “Just for Kids!” with Susan McPeters (Black Hawk College); July 8, 10, “Arsenal Island History” with Mike McKean/Sam Helig (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers); July 15, 17, “Rafting Logs to QC Mills” with Gayle Rein (historian); July 22, 24, “Historic Bridges of the QC” with Curt Roseman (geographer); and July 29, 31, “Water Quality Testing” with Brent Earley (Iowa American Water).
Aug. 5, 7, “I-74 Bridge Plans” with Doug Rick (Iowa DOT); Aug.12, “River Landscape Mosaic” with Norm Moline/Reuben Heine (Augustana College); Aug. 19, 21, “Photography — Taking Better Pictures” with Brian Tugana (environmental portrait and documentary photographer); and Aug. 26, 28, “Music of the Mississippi River” with Ellis Kell (River Music Experience).
Wednesdays, 6:30 to 8 p.m., and/or Saturdays, 9-10:30 a.m. Be sure to dress for the weather and for walking! All sessions are outdoors. Sessions are individual, but offered more than once throughout the summer. Cost is $5 each, unless you are a River Action member, in which case, the sessions are FREE!
June 11, 14, “Where Does all that Sand and Gravel Come From?” with Marshal Guth (RiverStone); June 21, “Reptiles and Amphibians” with Mik Holgersson (environmental specialist); and June 28, “Decoding the Past: Seeking the Home Saukenuk and Black Hawk’s Home Sites” with Ferrel Anderson (QC Archeological Society).
July 2, 5, “Bicycle Friendly Bettendorf” with Steve Grimes (City of Bettendorf); July 9, 12, “Where does it all go? Recycling 101” with Martin Davis (Midland Davis); July 6, 19, “Mississippi River Barge Fleeting” with Walter Bassow (Mississippi River Fleeting); July 23, 26, “Alcoa: Environmental Improvements”; and July 30, Aug. 2, “Credit Island: Plans for the Future” with Bob Peppers (Friends of Credit Island).
Aug. 6, 9, “Ghost Stories of the Mississippi” with Bobbie Swanson; Aug. 13, 16, “Gold Coast Historic Walking Tour” with Marion McGinnis (historian); Aug. 20, 23, “Wetland Restoration at Green Valley Nature Preserve” with Mik Holgersson (environmental specialist); and Aug. 27, “State of the River Mississippi River” boat tour with Reuben Heine (Augustana College).
Everyone is invited to participate in Floatzilla Aug. 16 as River Action attempts to break a world record for the most kayaks on the river! Help promote paddling on our rivers, and host the largest gathering of canoes, kayaks and paddleboards on the Upper Mississippi River!
Paddle, mountain bike and run your way to the top! Race individually or as a team, and celebrate at the finish at the post-race party with pizza and beer. All transitions take place at Empire Park in East Moline.
The boat (kayak or canoe) is a 3.8-mile paddle around Campbell’s Island.
The bike is a short ride to Illiniwek Forest Preserve for a challenging mountain bike course returning to Empire Park (3.8 miles paved, 4.5 miles off-road, 400 feet of elevation changes).
The run is a 2-mile paved and off-road run finishing at Empire Park.
• Compete individually or as a team:
TWO-PERSON TEAM: Consists of two members who complete all legs of race — finish time is the average of both times
THREE-PERSON TEAM RELAY: Kayak-Bike-Run
Corporate Adventure Challenge: Three-person teams compete to be the best corporate team in the Quad Cities.
Race start — Saturday, Sept. 20, 2014, at 8 a.m. — Empire Park, East Moline, Ill.
15th Annual Senior Citizens Riverfront Golf Cart Tours
Come join the fun Thursday, Sept. 4, and sign up for the 15th Annual Senior Citizens Riverfront Golf Cart Tours! Reservations are required, and space is limited. The deadline for reservations is Sept. 2!
The tours start Thursday, Sept. 4, and will use existing riverfront trails and offer participants an opportunity to see and hear all that the riverfront has to offer from the front seat of a golf cart. This is a great opportunity to gain some knowledge about the past, present and future of many of our riverfront amenities in the Quad Cities. Tours fill up fast, and carts are limited, so don’t delay.
Five different tours are available! All tours are $12.50 per person, and last approximately two hours. Tour times for the tours are 9-11 a.m., 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., and 2-4 p.m.
The five tours are as follow:
• Tour No. 1 — Iowa Tour — Tour the Bettendorf/Davenport riverfront, starting at Credit Island and traveling to Leach Park and back. Stop at RiverWay projects, as well as other exciting ports of call.
• Tour No. 2 — Arsenal Island Tour — Tour the Arsenal Island’s beautiful riverfront trail. Make stops at Memorial Park, the Col. Davenport House, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Visitor Center and River Action’s green parking lot.
• Tour No. 3 — Illinois Tour — Visit the Rock Island and Moline riverfronts starting at Sunset Park, Rock Island, and traveling to Sylvan Island and Ben Butterworth Parkway in Moline and then returning to Sunset Park.
• Tour No. 4 — Illinois Tour — Starting at the east end of Ben Butterworth Parkway at 55th Street in Moline and ride through East Moline and Hampton to the Village of Rapids City and then return to Moline. The tour includes stops at “The Quarter” and Empire Park in East Moline, Hampton’s Riverfront Park, Illiniwek State Park and Lock & Dam 14.
• Tour No. 5 — Illinois Tour — Ride along the newest segment of the Great River Trail. The tour begins in Rapids City and will go through Port Byron and all the way to Cordova. Start and end at Shuler’s Shady Grove at 11th Street in Rapids City.
Dan Klinkenberg speaks!
Dan Klinkenberg will be the keynote speaker for 2014 Mississippi River Conference Oct. 15-17. Klinkenberg has traveled120,000 miles up and down the Great River Road, writing extensively about the people and places along the Mississippi River!
Klinkenberg is a contributing editor for Big River magazine and has written articles for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune and Wisconsin Trails magazine. He has published three books and written dozens of blogs about the Mississippi River, and has taken thousand of photos of the river during his travels.
He is working on a new book that combines songs about the Mississippi River with short essays to explore the many different ways people relate to the river.
More about River Action is available online at www.riveraction.com.
From the June 11-17, 2014, issue