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Rain Barrels and Rain Gardens: Nine Mile Run Watershed Association Looks Ahead

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Nine Mile Run

This Saturday night, the Nine Mile Run Watershed Association (NMRWA) will celebrate another year of progress at their annual fundraiser.

In lower Frick Park, near the confluence of the Fern Hollow and Nine Mile Run streams, “A Midsummer Night’s Storm” will include food and drink from Point Brugge CafĂ© and Make Your Mark Artspace & Coffeehouse. Rick Sebak, the Mon River Ramblers, J. Malls and Hi Top Wrangler will be on hand for the festivities.

The goal will be to raise funds for the association’s environmental stewardship programs, including the Rain Barrel Initiative and Rain Garden Pilot Project.

One of the environmental challenges in the Pittsburgh area is that rain storms cause runoff that brings chemicals and pollutants from our streets and sewers down into the rivers. The Association has been battling that by introducing rain barrels and teaching homeowners to develop rain gardens to keep rainfall on their own property.

“We now have over 1300 rain barrels just in our watershed alone, which is probably one of the highest densities for a rain barrel program in the country,” says Lisa Brown, director of operations and outreach at NMRWA. “Within the watershed, we install and we maintain them. And we continually keep in contact with the rain barrel owners,” to create an ongoing relationship of outreach and teaching.

The Rain Garden project is “sort of a separate project because many, many people don’t necessarily want to use rain barrels. They are interested in something that is, I guess, more aesthetically appealing,” Brown says. “So we teach them to disconnect downspouts and create a rain garden, as part of a suite of options for homeowners.”

Pop City Media
Writer: Melissa Rayworth
Source: Lisa Brown, NMRWA
Images courtesy of NMRWA

Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation

100 West Station Square Drive, Suite 450

Pittsburgh, PA 15219

Phone: 412-471-5808  |  Fax: 412-471-1633