The Reedy Recap

Friends of the Reedy River

Upcoming Events & Volunteer Opportunities

Poinsettia Christmas Parade - December 9

Ring in the Reedy with FoRR at the Poinsettia Christmas Parade through downtown Greenville on Saturday, December 9!

Water Quality Monitoring Outings: TBD in mid-December 

FORR’s quality monitoring team will head to the river for water quality sampling in mid-December. Updates will be announced on our social media and in our Monitoring Team Email. 

See the latest water quality data HERE.

30 for 30 Fundraising Campaign!

In honor of FoRR's 30th Anniversary, we are raising $30,000. Can we count on your support? Click here or on the DONATE button at the bottom of this newsletter. Learn more about our 30 for 30 campaign.

November In Review...

November 6

2023 Annual Meeting

This year’s Friends of the Reedy River Annual Meeting took place on the evening of November 6 at the ReWa Water Discovery Lab and was open to all FoRR members. The annual meeting featured a keynote speaker, recognized award recipients, elected 2024 Board of Directors officers and new board members, and reflected upon FoRR’s 30th anniversary accomplishments. 

Read the full press release for FoRR’s 2023 Annual Meeting here.

November 7

Riparian Buffers Amendment Passed Second Reading

The Greenville County amendment to strengthen riparian buffers regulations passed its second reading at the November 7 County Council meeting. Thank you to all who attended and wore blue to support riparian buffers or called your councilmembers ahead of time.  

The amendment passed second reading with a vote of 9-3. The public hearing for this amendment will likely happen concurrently with the third reading.

The amendment will require a 50’ buffer on all classes of streams and Waters of the State in the County and updates the minimum lot size to 1.5 ac. for new subdivisions of 10 or more houses on septic. The amendment as passed on 11/7 includes updated items to reflect County staff recommendations to increase the minimum buffer from 50’ to 100’ on Waters of the State features with a drainage area of 50 ac. or more. A “sunset clause” was also added to the amendment which states that the amendment will expire in two years unless it is readopted by Council.

Call your council member to thank them for supporting this amendment thus far and encourage them to support strengthening county-wide riparian buffer requirements again at third reading. Please stay tuned for more information on the text amendment’s public hearing and third reading.

Board Member Highlight

Elisabeth Schatke

Upcoming Treasurer

Elisabeth Schatke is the Development Director at Upstate Warrior Solution, a nonprofit that serves local veterans and their families. She graduated from Furman University in 2017 with a B.S. in Sustainability Science and Urban Studies with a minor in Poverty Studies. After obtaining her undergraduate degree, Elisabeth served as an AmeriCorps VISTA through United Way of Greenville County. She is currently pursuing an M.S. in Nonprofit Administration from Louisiana State University. Elisabeth is an active member of the Rotary Club of Greenville and fosters with Greenville County Animal Care. She is passionate about environmental conservation and enjoys gardening and taking her dog, Daisy, on hikes.

Q: How did you get involved with FoRR?

A: Several years ago, I came across a FoRR river clean-up at the Swamp Rabbit Cafe and decided to sign up for the newsletter after seeing the great work being done. After that, I began attending clean-ups and invasive species removals. I loved the group's energy and quickly became invested in FoRR's mission. I was surprised and honored to be invited to join the board last year, and am looking forward to serving next year as the treasurer.

Q: What is your favorite native plant?

A: My current favorite native plant is the American chestnut tree. I hadn't known much about this species until recently when I came across a patch of them at a farm in Georgia and researched them more afterwards. Before the chestnut blight in the early 1900's killed an estimated 4 billion of the trees, the American chestnut once made up as many as one in four trees in eastern U.S. forests. The trees were an important source of food for native wildlife, and their leaves provided key nutrients for aquatic macroinvertebrates in rivers. Efforts are now being made to develop genetically diverse American chestnut hybrids that are blight resistant in order to restore the trees back to the landscape. I'm currently storing some of the chestnuts I found on the farm so I can try some "chestnuts roasting on an open fire" at Christmas, and I am planning on germinating a few to plant as saplings next year!

Q: Do you have a vacation coming up that you are really looking forward to?

A: I have an upcoming trip to Iceland planned for February 2024. While this is one of the coldest months to visit Iceland, it does have an increased chance that I'll get to see the Northern Lights during my week there.  My itinerary for this week-long trip includes seeing many other natural wonders, including glaciers, geysers, lava fields, sea stacks, hot springs, and volcanoes. Iceland is also a world leader in sustainability practices; I'm hoping to learn more about the hydropower and geothermal energy that enables the country to meet 90% of its energy needs with renewable energy.

Sponsor Spotlight

As we head into the busy holiday shopping season, please consider supporting some of our amazing community partners! Mast General Store, Dapper Ink’s “Landmark Project”, Orvis Greenville, and Publix Supermarkets. And don’t forget to check out Miracle at Southernside Brewing Co. for exclusive holiday cocktails served in a festive setting!

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