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Johnson Creek Days returns Sept. 20-22, featuring two Gresham events

by: CONTRIBUTED PHOTO: JOHNSON CREEK WATERSHED COUNCIL - A science talk at 4th Street Brewing will offer a virtual flyover of Johnson Creek Watershed projects and explain how scientists take them from concepts to shovel ready.

Invest. Restore. Inspire.

These are the goals of the Johnson Creek Watershed Council, a grassroots community group that promotes stewardship of the watershed — a narrow ribbon of green and blue spanning from the headwaters near Boring to where it meets the Willamette River in Milwaukie, 26 miles west.

An event bringing together residents throughout the watershed for everything from riding to a bike-centric food cart to perusing edible weeds is returning for the fourth year.

Johnson Creek Days will run Sept. 20-22 throughout the watershed, with two events planned in the Gresham area, a science talk and edible week walk.

“This is about celebrating Johnson Creek in different ways and highlighting recreation opportunities surrounding it,” said Amy Lodholz, volunteer and outreach coordinator for the Johnson Creek Watershed Council of Milwaukie.

Added Nancy Robrecht, a volunteer, “We want to build ownership of the watershed and offer education — to let people know what some of the problems and solutions are.”

Home to native fish and wildlife, Johnson Creek faces environmental challenges similar to other urban watersheds, including pollution, high water temperatures, bank erosion, sedimentation and frequent flooding.

Council staff members, volunteers and event chairwoman Nicole Alexander say there was a time decades ago when some were ready to give up on the creek for these reasons.

Regardless of where participants live, the goal is for them to gain a greater awareness of and appreciation for the watershed closest to them.

“Now it’s a beacon of hope,” Lodholz said of Johnson Creek. “We’re encouraging people to come back and appreciate it for what it is — to be a part of the community afterward.”


Science Talk: A Geographic Perspective on Restoring Johnson Creek, 6-8 p.m. Friday, Sept. 20, at 4th Street Brewing Co., 77 N.E. Fourth St., Gresham. Johnson Creek Watershed Council Restoration Coordinator Rob Jenkinson will lead a “virtual flyover” of the Johnson Creek Watershed, featuring several of the 120 restoration projects implemented during the past decade. The council has mapped and detailed these projects online as part of a “restoration project census” and is now developing a 2015-25 restoration action plan. Participants will learn how scientists take projects from concept to “shovel read.”

Edible Weed Walk, 1-3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 22, at Pleasant Valley Elementary School, 17625 S.E. Foster Road, Portland. Many weeds are used for agricultural and medicinal purposes. Herbalist Randi Embree will enlighten participants about the world of weeds.

Johnson Creek Days also will include the Fun Run, 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 21, at Woodstock Pace Setter; Children’s Discovery Carnival, 1-4 p.m. Saturday Sept. 21, in Lents Park; and Bicycle Bonanza, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 22, at the JCWC Office.

All events are free. To register for an event, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 503-652-7477. For more information on Johnson Creek Days, visit jcwc.org.

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