Highlights from EcoExpress and Stormwater blogs

As part of our mission, GreenTreks Network provides two main programs to provide people with multimedia resources to take action towards a more sustainable lifestyle. StormwaterPA provides video case studies and multimedia resources for the benefit of homeowners, municipalities, developers, landscapers, and clean water advocates. EcoExpress makes available GreenTreks’ extensive catalog of environmental documentaries for use by educators and students. Each of EcoExpress’ videos are correlated to state academic standards and feature related lesson plan materials.

The unifying aspect of both EcoExpress and StormwaterPA is that both initiatives provide engaging content focused on our local environment. Here are some recent highlights from both programs’ blogs.


Leaf Litter and Its Role in Storm Water Management
By Anita Brook Dupree
“High winds and stormy weather seem like a terrible thing to most of us, but these winds help shed leaves from deciduous trees. These leaves have to be shed. This is a story about the good things that all those leaves do for the environment (especially in wooded areas, forests, parks and even your backyard).”
Read Full Blog on EcoExpress.org’s Main Page.

No Child Left Indoors: Writing for the Common Core
By Anita Brook Dupree
“The Common Core ELA standards require the fostering of three writing capacities: writing to explain, writing to persuade and writing to convey real or imagined experience. A simple walk around the schoolyard can be the experience needed to get your students’ writing jump started.”
Read Full Blog.



Report Back from the Schuylkill Action Network Annual Meeting
By Meghan Filoromo
The Schuylkill Action Network Annual Meeting on 11/16 was quite inspiring! SAN consists of over 300 members who are working together to promote and protect the Schuylkill River! See some of my notes, and find out how you can get involved.
Read Full Blog.

What Happens to Superfund Sites after a Superstorm?
By Meghan Filoromo
“This morning when I was about to head out the door, I caught an interesting (and alarming) story on Morning Edition on NPR.

What happens to Superfund sites after a Superstorm? A few weeks after Hurricane Sandy, many are worried about the toxic chemicals from nearby Superfund sites.”
Read Full Blog.

The Street Art of Stormwater Stencils
By Meghan Filoromo
“Far too frequently, people use storm drains as mini illegal dumping grounds. Stormwater drain marking projects are an amazing (and beautiful!) way to draw attention to these oft-neglected parts of the developed landscape.”
Read Full Blog.

GreenTreks Gives Thanks

ThanksgivingWith Thanksgiving just a few days away, we are all reflecting on what we are thankful for. I think I can speak for all of us when I say that we are thankful to all of our supporters who allow us to share these important environmental stories and resources.

We have a lot to be thankful for!



Here is what the GreenTreks team feels grateful for:

Barry Lewis, Executive Director:
Barry Lewis“Being Thankful is a daily ritual for me, because I know how lucky I am. An incredible partner in life, amazing friends, good health, a love of adventure. A job that makes a difference, endless opportunities, great co-workers, colleagues who care. Access to clean water, nutritious food, fresh air, a place to call home. Dark chocolate, red wine, coffee, blueberries. And so much more…”


Anita Brook Dupree, Director of Operations:
Anita Brook Dupree, Director of Operations“It changes every day. I try to list three things I’m thankful for each day to stay happy and positive. Of course I am thankful for all the usual things, my family, my health, the good fortune of not being in the path of Hurricane Sandy…but I have a few specifics too. I am thankful for my education. it has afforded me infinite experiences that have made my life fuller. I am thankful for the vibrance of the city…film festivals, plays, restaurants, diversity. And I am thankful the president was reelected.”

Meghan Filoromo, Project Coordinator
“I’m thankful for my loving and supportive family, friends, and community. I’m grateful to be working for an organization that does such important educational work around environmental topics that I’m passionate about. And I’m always thankful for having a whole holiday dedicated to spending the day cooking fun recipes with locally-grown ingredients!”



David Hecht, Volunteer
“There are many things to be thankful for during this holiday season. I am fortunate to have a wonderful family. My wife Karen and I have been happily together for 36 years. I am very proud of my wonderful daughters Allison and Brittany. I have a great mother and mother in law who always support Karen, myself and our family. I am also thankful to my great friends, immediate family and co-workers both in GSK and GreenTreks.”

Reimagining the Fairmount Water Works

Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center Design Charette

Last Friday, I was invited to participate in a sneak peek of the results of the a Design Charette at the Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center. I don’t know about the rest of you, but prior to this event, I sure didn’t know what a charette entailed. It’s a method of organizing ideas from experts of diverse backgrounds into something that is both constructive and creative. It’s a chance for artists, scientists, storytellers, educators, and others to allow their imaginations to run free. They can imagine the future possibilities and potential of the space.

The new design ideas are very exciting. Since the Schuylkill River literally runs through the FWWIC, they explored how to draw more attention to this waterway. A television played brief clips of the shimmering, ethereal light of the sun reflecting off of the Schuylkill and onto surfaces within the FWWIC. There was a station to play with the materials of the river. There were a ton of innovative ideas that I could go on about. But you should check them out for yourself!

This Thursday, November 15, visit the Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center (640 Water Works Drive, Philadelphia, PA) from 5:30pm to 7:30pm. The results of the design charette will be on display. Get inspired, and share your own ideas!

Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center Design Charette
Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center Design Charette

And don’t forget to check out FWWIC’s Pollutionopolis installation while you’re there!
It’s one of my favorite parts of the Interpretive Center.

Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center's Pollutionopolis